When I was a kid, I thought an editor was someone who went through a manuscript and checked for misplaced semicolons and random typos. A lot of people still think that.
A lot of other people think an editor is a gatekeeper: someone with the power to make you an author, or not. Someone who decides.
A lot of people think an editor is a taste-maker.
A lot of people think an editor is extraneous - who needs to hire an editor or sign with a publisher in this age of spell-check and instant e-publishing?
But I would argue that editor is essential. Because an editor does more than find good manuscripts and correct typos. An editor is more than a gatekeeper, more than a taste-maker. An editor is more than any of your writing friends could ever be.
Because a good editor can read your manuscript, get to its heart, and ask you the questions that will force you to dig deeper into the soul of your manuscript and lay bare the essence of your story. Good editors can see the big picture and know what to say to make you see the places where the canvas is showing through because you didn't use enough paint.
Good editors are like gold.
What is your most memorable editorial experience?
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