Wednesday, May 26, 2010
Editing and Proofing
We are the writers of words.
Sometimes they're beautiful and perfect. Other times they're horribly wrong. And quite often, they are either bad choices or misspelled. Or both. Yikes!
As writers, it's always a challenge to proof and edit our own creations. A fresh pair of eyes can usually, sometimes almost instantly, spot things that we've missed, even after we've read it for the hundredth time. We get involved in the creative process, and we type away at a million miles an hour. We know what we're saying. Our perfect words make perfect sense. To us. Unfortunately, there are times when the reader just doesn't understand what we mean.
Those are the times when the assistance of an editor/proofreader can be invaluable. Before sending our "baby" out into the cruel world, we need to be certain she's ready. Agents expect nothing less. And it's not only our manuscript that needs to be perfect. Don't forget about that pesky query letter and synopsis.
I've been giving this some thought. There are great resources on the internet including Absolute Write, Miss Snark's First Victim, and Query Shark, just to name a few. These sites are frequented by writers with varying degrees of experience and knowledge they generously and freely impart. But their time is limited, so they're probably not going to be spending a great deal of it helping to improve our work. At the same time, there are professional editing and proofreading services floating around out there in the ether of the web. Which begs the question: Can the market stand the addition of another professional editing and proofreading service? Because that's what I'm considering, and I'd like your input.
So, here are my questions for you: (1) Have you ever used an editing or proofreading service? (2) Would you consider taking advantage of such a resource, provided the cost was affordable. (3) What would entice you to use such a service? (4) Do you have the knowledge, time, or interest in case the workload requires additional help?
Please don't think I'm posting this in an attempt to push such a service offering on the loyal readers of this blog. That's not my intent at all. It's simply to get a feel for what other writers think about using such a service. Based on the comments, provided its a large enough sample, it should provide either a yes or a no on whether it's a feasible undertaking with any merit for future consideration. I would love to read your input, and feel free to write as much or as little as you wish. I'm in the research stage at the moment.
(Gosh, I hope there are no tpykos in this post.)