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on editing

Just had to share another pleasure. I’ve just read the article in the Saturday “Globe” entitled “Where have all the editors gone?” The article points out that fewer publishing houses are employing editors. Gone are the days of an editor like Maxwell Perkins making such a huge difference to writers like Hemingway and F. Scott Fitzgerald. Often, now, writers themselves have to pay an editor to help get their manuscripts in order, before submitting them.

This is bad news for me as a writer. This is good news for me as an editor.

For once – is it possible? – some of my skills may actually be deployed at the right time and the right place. I entered writing as a profession just as making a living as a writer was becoming even more difficult and less lucrative than it already was. And worse all the time, with the unknowns of the Internet, magazines and newspapers flailing and publishers closing, small publishers particularly, the kinds interested in and patient with new writers.
BUT … now that I am editing as well as teaching, I can see actually almost making a living in this business. “The biggest-growing sector in Canadian publishing,” says literary agent Anne McDermid, “is the freelance editor.”
C’est moi! Yes, more a teacher and coach than someone dealing only with what’s on the page, but still – for once in my life, I’m in a biggest-growing sector. Bring me your tired prose, your huddled adverbs, your tangled beginnings and floppy endings and wordy middles, and I shall edit them.
And on the proceeds, I shall go to Paris and eat cheese.



2 Responses to “on editing”

  1. Estee Klar says:

    All right. I'll help with a fraction of the funds if you have glass of wine for me and bring me some macaroons from L'Audre.

  2. Beth says:

    Mmm, Laduree macaroons, light as a puff of cloud. There's a funny story about Laduree macaroons in the blog, during last year's visit to Paris. I'd be happy to toast you with wine and macaroons, Estee.

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About Beth

I began keeping a journal at the age of nine. Nearly fifty years later, I started this online journal, sharing reflections, reviews, updates, and the occasional secret.

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