Finding the Right Editor for YOU
So, you’ve decided to hire a freelance editor.
Whether you’re self-publishing or just want someone to help clean up your manuscript before you submit it to a publishing house or a potential agent; whether you’re writing fiction or nonfiction; or whether you have a blog, an article, or a full-length book, an editor can be a valuable partner in improving your writing and reaching your goals.
But there are so many editors to choose from. How do you pick the right one?
Finding the right editor is about more than just evaluating their technical skills, which is difficult enough. Here are a few suggestions for what to look for and ask about when deciding if an editor is right for you.
Should I Use Humor in My Writing?
When you think of humor in writing, do you immediately think of comedians like Tina Fey? Or maybe satirists like Mark Twain or Terry Pratchett? Or maybe Erma Bombeck or Janet Evanovich?
All of these writers are masters of their craft, and the literary and entertainment world would be a much darker place without them. But humor doesn’t have to take center stage to exist in your writing.
From sci-fi/fantasy to Westerns, from romance to horror, even nonfiction, humor can enhance any genre or subject.
Sit & Set
Back in June, I wrote a blog post about lay and lie and their correct usage under standard grammar rules. But those aren’t the only set of words that creates headaches for many writers.
Sit and set get mixed up nearly as often. The problem is that in many American spoken dialects, people use set almost exclusively, probably due to accent.
But in written English they are still considered distinct words with distinct usages and meanings.
A while back, I shared a blog post about how to create an exclusion dictionary in Microsoft Word to tell the program to flag certain words as misspelled even though they aren’t. And in that post, I also mentioned custom dictionaries.
Word comes with a fairly comprehensive default dictionary already installed. That default dictionary is set and can’t be altered by the average user.
But what if you use an uncommon word or name in your writing? If you use it fairly often, dealing with all of those squiggly red lines and Word’s constant insistence that it’s wrong can get real annoying real fast.
Fortunately, Word also has custom dictionary options. The custom dictionary acts as a supplement for you to manually input words you don’t want flagged.
There are two main ways to add to your custom dictionary, and both are fairly easy.
*Note—these instructions are for newer versions of Word. If you use a version from 2003 or before, WordTips provides instructions specific to the older programs.
Rebecca has a passion for helping you fill the world with great literature and making sure said literature doesn't get passed over for the lack of a little editing.