I love editors.
One of the most useful, but at times the most challenging part of writing a book is the editing process. My books go through 3 different stages of editing, with different people looking at 1st the broader story, then the finer details. This can cover anything from a character or a scene that doesn`t quite work, to tiny points about whether dates match up, or individual words need replacing.
Editors offer advice, make suggestions and ask a whole lot of questions. They usually leave it up to me to make the final decision, but ensure everything has been thought through, so it all ties in together and the story is as good as I can make it.
So I`m very grateful for my editors – I love having an open minded, unbiased and fresh pair of eyes to offer feedback. And it`s great to know someone will catch my mistakes before they reach the readers. But, on the other hand – it isn`t always pleasant having other people read the book I`ve worked so hard on and pick up on every single mistake, or weak spot.
And this isn`t just true when it comes to writing…
Most of us don`t find criticism fun. Having your flaws and errors pointed out is rarely enjoyable, or easy.
It takes courage to ask someone – how did I do? What could I do better? Did I mess up? Am I handling this right? Do you think this is a good plan? Tell me, what do you really think about my new haircut?
Especially if you ask the right person, who will give an honest answer.
It can be hard not to get defensive, or make excuses, or let it crush us.
But at the same time, done well, by the right person, it can be so useful. I`ve found the best editors are those who take the time to point out the good, as well as what could be better.
Who help the story stay true to the author.
Unlike a bad editor, who will damage a story, rather than improve it.
Could you do with a life-editor from time to time? Someone who you can ask honest questions about how you`re doing, and they will answer you truthfully, with kindness and respect? Perhaps that`s one way to help our life-story become the best it can be.