When people discover I’m a freelance editor at networking events or through casual conversation, they occasionally ask this question: “Why does anyone need an editor when they can just use spellcheck?”
Over time, computers – desktops, notebooks, tablets, smartphones – outlive their usefulness. Some become slow with accumulated software updates/upgrades. Others become glitchy. Or the battery life wanes. Or the computer simply stops working entirely. Though my 2015 laptop was a lovely combination of slow and glitchy with low battery life, its writing and editing software worked well … so I ignored the annoyances (and programmed Microsoft Word to autosave and create file backup copies). Until one day when I couldn’t…
Writing at mid-morning, I am focused. The only sound is the computer keys as I type, and my awareness of even that noise fades as words appear on the screen. Sitting up straight – not hunched – helps to maintain concentration while fingers fly over the keys (thanks to eleventh grade typing back in the 1980s). Otherwise, I am still, save for flexing my mind. But one can only be stationary for so long before concentration and creative productivity wanes; the body requires periodic flexing too!…
Every December I take stock of the accumulated clutter my basement. Not exciting, but oh so necessary. Similarly, now a good moment to review small business or freelancing endeavors – including the written portion. In the New Year do you plan to stay put or mix things up with regards to your existing copy?
In August I wrote about “#EditorsFiguringOut … A Social Media Marketing Schedule.” Here is a continuation of that topic on more specific level, with a review of Angela Heman’s Twitter Marketing Unlocked. Since Twitter is my primary business social platform (followed by LinkedIn) – and as I was already trying to expand my social media presence – Hemans’ new book was a timely and welcome find…
Do freelance editors truly need to do social media marketing? YES – resoundingly so. Even if most of the business is local, those locals need to see the editor is comfortable online as well as off. Such is the digital world we now inhabit. Plus, a well-thought-out, targeted social media calendar can lead to greater online peer / client connections, referrals and (paying) jobs.
In a creative writing class many years ago, a college professor looked at us – a bunch of 19 and 20-year-olds struggling to put words on paper – and said something to the effect of: “Writing is not difficult. Just look within and let the words spring forth.”
As if writing was as effortless as tulips emerging from the ground each spring. In reality, that latter process is not easy. Not one bit. Perennial bulbs such as tulips require enormous energy, and often care, to successfully bloom again and again each year….
The first day of March began with clouds and ended with rain.
The second day of March began with rain and ended with
snow and lots of horizontally-blowing wind.
The third day of March began with clouds and ended with sunshine.
This much is undeniable, because those three days are already history. But what would the remainder of March’s first week bring? How about the second, third or fourth? At the time of this writing, questions bursting with uncertainty.
Uncertainty is disquieting. Uncertainty is paralyzing. It’s much easier to put the thoughts of what-might-happen aside … along with so much else….
I geek out about many things.
The need for an apostrophe before the last “s” in a word (singular possessive: “the cat’s kittens”) or after (plural possessive: “the cats’ kittens”). A perfect cup of hot tea. Any episode of Star Trek TOS (The Original Series, for you neophytes). Terrific historical fiction and non-fiction. Almost anything science-related and explainable in lay-person terms … including this year’s nationwide craze over the first total solar eclipse to traverse the continental United States since 1979!
I toyed with totality for a whole year. All (excuse the pun) the stars aligned: the eclipse took place on third week in August, our usual time for family summer vacations; my son’s camp ended the previous Friday; and the eclipse was going over the East Coast!
Planning the excursion was similar to the writing and editing process for any article or blog….
Think back to a high school or college writing assignment. Term paper, book report … anything, really. Did you get dinged for typos? (Shorthand for typographical errors, in case you were wondering.) Does a particularly egregious error come to mind?
Allow me to get this conversation going, with an embarrassingly cringe-worthy example out of my own not-so-recent past….