Notes from An Alien

~ Explorations In Reading, Writing & Publishing ~

Tag Archives: Alan Rinzler

What Are Editors Good For?

I’ve written here before about editors

And, many writers have some interesting relationships with them.

But, first, it’ll be good to decide what kind of editor we’re talking about.

Here are a couple links that describe various types of editors:




I gave you three because different people have different ideas about not only what kind of editors there are but also what the different editors are supposed to do

I sincerely hope a few readers of this post who are writers and have experience with editors will weigh in on this topic in the Comments.

For those who have no experience, reading the info at those links may give you enough to make a comment or two but I have another idea.

A video with Joel Friedlander interviewing a Developmental Editor, Alan Rinzler. who’s quite well-known in the United States.

By the way, whether or not you’ve had experience with an editor, please don’t believe everything Mr. Rinzler says.

Just like I’ve warned readers about “Rules” for writers, I must warn about “Musts” with editors.

Watch the video, perhaps check the links, think about it, and I’ll meet you in the Comments :-)

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Does Every Writer Need An Editor?

There’s been much to-do about the roaring stream of poorly edited books produced by “self-published” authors.

And, even though there can be valid reasons for not following the “rules” when writing, typos and fractured sentences will appear in any writer’s manuscript.

Can they find these mistakes themselves?

I do suppose there are a precious few who could

For the rest of us, there are editors.

While writing my novel, Notes from An Alien, I went to the Owner of Book Island, Selina Greene (former publisher), and let her know how poor I was and my concern about not being able to afford an editor.

She told me to contact my local universities and solicit the English Grad students.

After three phone calls and as many emails, I had found my editor and she only wanted an acknowledgement of her efforts in the book :-)

In a previous post, Should Writers Fear Editors?, I shared some of the common misperceptions of editors from an article by Alan Rinzler.

And, for those not challenged by near-abject poverty, I recently found some wonderful editorial information.

Eva van Emden is a full-time freelance editor with, of all things, her own editing blog :-)

And, though her full site is, justifiably, focused on offering a writer her own services, she provides much more, like these clear points of the purpose of an editor:

  • suggest improvements to strengthen the flow of your story or argument,
  • identify places where the phrasing is unclear and suggest an alternative,
  • catch embarrassing typos and spelling mistakes,
  • edit spelling, capitalization, hyphenation, punctuation, and layout to be consistent within the document and to conform to the appropriate style.

There’s also a page of Editing Resources that includes the following topics:

Help with hiring a freelance editor
Editors’ organizations
Style guides and editing references
Writing resources
Editing Fiction
Book news
Free software

You might also want to visit her page describing the various types of editing :-)
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Should Writers Fear Editors?

Some writers rely on editors to raise the value of their work; some seem to cast the editor as the nemesis to free expression.

I’m heading into the writing of two new books with much anticipatory joy because I’ll have two editors for each book

Alan Rinzler is a seasoned consulting editor; and, you can even view a list of some of the authors Mr. Rinzler has worked with.

Alan, in his article, Fear of Editors, delves into the Realities of the Author/Editor relationship by clearing up the following, common Perceptions:

“I’ll lose control of my own creation.”

“I’ll be intimidated, and won’t be able to resist making changes that I think are wrong.  I worry that the book will lose my voice.”

“I can’t tell if an editor is any good or not since there’s no rating system, license, or industry standard.”

“Agents won’t take on my book if I’ve worked with a private editor.”

“If I do get an agent or publisher, I won’t be able to produce another book as good as the first one without help.”

“An editor will produce a new manuscript and I won’t be able to restore the original if that’s what I decide to do.”

“I’m already in a writer’s critique group and don’t need any other help.”

“I won’t be able to have a close working relationship with an editor since I haven’t found one who lives nearby.”

“Developmental editing is expensive. Is it really worth the investment?”

Then, after his rectifications of those misperceptions, he gives a link to another article, Choosing a freelance editor: What you need to know.

Have you worked with a developmental editor?

Do you have author friends who have?

Did you/they have a good, bad, or mixed experience?
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Book Bloggers ~ Just for The Love of It :-)

Book Bloggers do it all for love.

Building an Author Platform? Check out our last post (just scroll down a bit) but also check out the people called Book Bloggers.

Alan Rinzler of The Book Deal had this to say about Book Bloggers:

“Book bloggers love to read books and to recommend them to their own followers. There are scores of avid bloggers in every genre, out there reviewing thousands of books and interviewing hundreds of authors every year. They do this for pleasure, and are a very diverse crowd: some are book people in their day jobs, some are stay-at-home moms and dads, some are students.”

In fact, BookExpo America, in May, will be followed by the Book Blogger Convention.

There’s also a custom Google search tool to help you find Book Bloggers.

As Rinzler summed up in his post:

“Marketing yourself to book bloggers is not for everyone. It takes time and energy you might prefer to spend writing, or cultivating other gardens. But it’s definitely one of the most powerful new ways to get your work in the hands of readers available today.”

In my run-up to publication in May, I’ve contacted about 60 of these wonderful folks. I’ll more than likely be contacting a lot more of them :-)

Have you talked to a friendly Book Blogger lately?
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