Wednesday, May 16, 2007

Whatever It Takes

I cannot believe it’s the third Wednesday of the month already. I’m behind on everything including this post. Sorry folks, I haven’t finished reading “How To Write Killer Fiction.” So, you’ll have to wait for my next blog entry to find out what Carolyn Wheat has to say about writing the suspense story.

Why am I so behind? It’s the old adage of over scheduling. I started out this month with a clean slate. Then the old super human syndrome took over and said yes to everything anyone wanted. Ahhh, but the joys of spring are in the air so all is well. I’m clearing my slate and moving on.

This morning I read a couple of blog entries about writer’s confidence. Most would agree that writers need a certain amount of confidence in order to continue to strive toward publication. But, too much confidence is like adding too much starch to your ironing. You don't want to be known as so stiff no one can work with you. There is no doubt that Editors and agents are looking for writers who have excellent writing abilities. They also look to work with writers who understand that editing is part of the process and it will improve their writing. Flexibility is the key here. We all fall in love with the things we write, but we need to temper that love with the logical thinking. If an editor or agent wants some changes made, chances are, they know the market better than we do. Before throwing a fit, think about those changes for a bit. Take a walk, and get some air.

I’ve been zeroing in and listening to what published authors are saying. Many say they rewrite, rewrite, and rewrite until their manuscript sparkles. Then they submit it knowing full well that the editor or agent will still ask for changes and most of the time those changes will make the manuscript better.

How about it? Are you willing to allow a knowledgeable editor help turn your writing into something incredible?


Cheryl said...

Having worked with two great editors for my articles, I can tell you how helpful it is to have one.

My most recent editor, Cheryl Wright of Writer2Writer, caught something in the last article I submitted that allowed me to save face. I was writing about procrastination, and some of the articles I read claimed that perfectionists usually turn in less than perfect work (perfectionism often leads to procrastination). So, I mentioned something similiar in my article and Cheryl asked me where I got it from. I explained, and we decided the article would be better without it. After all, I don't like backlash any more than any other writer, and making some unsubstantiated claim would certainly mean backlash.

Most times, I take my editor's suggestions. They make my articles stronger and clearer. And I figure, my flexibility might just make me a regular contributor for markets who don't have the time and patience to deal with writers who will hassle over even the slighest changes.

Great post, Lori.

Jean said...

Great post.

Yeap, editors can be a big help if the writer will let them. Not only does the editor know the publication, but they have the impartial view of the piece of writing that allows them to have a better grasp on it than the one who wrote it.