Thursday, February 4, 2010

Editing is Writing, Too

It's a rather gray and stormy but pleasant day. I'm sitting at the window of my aerie; editing/critiquing the first 50 pages of an area writer's memoir; enjoying the journey; taking an occasional sip of brew; and glancing out at the rain. It doesn't get much better than this.

I low-balled my price because, right now, I just need to earn as much cash as I can. I usually charge $3-6 per double-spaced page for light edit and one page critique - quoted $2 on this one. I could get more in Atlanta and even more in New York, but this is Birmingham, Alabama - a very different market.

Editing is a kind of writing, too. It is easier to look at another's words and know how it can be better. It is sometimes slow-going, because as with my own work, I read certain passages aloud to hear their cadence. They have to sound right. After all we're telling a story and if it cannot sing to us when read aloud, it will never resonate on the page. When I'm through, I'll go back to editing my own words with a fresh eye, and a little more objective hand.

The author is a little stiff, but he does have a story to tell. I'm enjoying the read and hope that with my objective help, he will be encouraged to finish the manuscript and might even see publication.

© Perle Champion

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