Fellow writers, I get it –– shelling out money to edit something you’ve written for free isn’t your idea of a good time. It took me years to talk myself into investing in a professional round of editing, and it was only when I was getting desperate for help that I finally gave in.
“Becoming Light” (Now known as “The Dreadful Demise Of Miss Emma Collins”) was in a massive rut at the time. I knew there was something structurally wrong with it, but I couldn’t pinpoint exactly what it was, much less how to fix it.
Cue my awesome editor. She figured out right away what the problem was: my story was basically two novels. With her help, I restructured my entire manuscript and noticed something miraculous: it flowed better, it wasn’t so clunky, and it made sense.
I wouldn’t have known to change it without her. Despite all the writing books I read (dozens, people. Dozens) and workshops I attended, I just didn’t have the eyes for it that she did. Not to say that as a writer, I’m incapable of self-eding a WIP and making it publishable. But this was also my first manuscript and with that noble status came many, many issues that needed professional help. Hell, I needed another form of professional help after dealing with it for so many years.
Anyway, “The Dreadful Demise of Emma Collins” is all pretty and polished and ready to go out to the agents, and it’s all thanks to an awesome editor and the guidance she gave this relatively new writer.
What have your experiences been with professional editors?