Saturday, January 10, 2015

For the Love of Editing

Writing is certainly a passion of mine, but I also adore the editorial process. 
Off-Site Copy Editing | Navigating Hectivity by Micki Bare
The background noise of a fast food
restaurant helps me concentrate on
writing and editing. The coffee helps, too.

For six years, one of my duties with an advertising firm was copyediting. Reading for the purpose of correcting and improving a document was both challenging and interesting. Although, in advertising, copy editors must stick to grammar basics, including a occasional gentle suggestion for sentence reconstruction. Re-writes are taboo unless a copy writer asks for help. And that made sense to me, because the copy writers were in on the concepting meetings and knew what they were trying to convey. Copy editors simply made sure the subject and verb were in agreement in the copy deck--not an easy task when you have unruly parts of speech--North Carolina was spelled correctly in the television ad, and the phone number appeared accurately in the print ad.
Bleeding Pen | Navigating Hectivity by Micki Bare
I use the back of the page to write
notes, expand on ideas, and draft
entirely new paragraphs. 

But when I am editing my own work, I have the opportunity to rewrite, expand upon, or delete whatever necessary to improve my work. Like a potter working in clay, I mold and shape the written word until my glob of wet goo prose evolves into a shiny, smooth, unique work of art. Sometimes this involves hacking off a lump that does not work or wadding the whole thing into a ball and starting over. 

Currently, I am elbow deep in the wet goo of a book I am eager to complete. I am working diligently to create a glowing masterpiece out of a rough manuscript. One that will move readers and fill me with a humble, surreal pride. 
Finalizing a Manuscript | Navigating Hectivity by Micki Bare
After I mark up the entire manuscript,
I will head back to the computer and
update the digital version. Then one
more round of proofreading
before I am done.

When I write, I become engrossed in translating ideas and experiences into a written story. When I edit, I am swallowed whole by the process of tweaking and reworking the story so that it can reach its full potential. Either way, I am in my element, working my passion, and living my dream.

That is why, in the end, there is a piece of my soul in every column, blog, and book that bears my byline. 

Micki Bare, mother of three, wife, daughter & writer is the author of Thurston T. Turtle children's books. 
Email: mickibare (at)
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Copyright 2015 Michele Bare