How to Offer Your Authors Positive Feedback
Recognizing and affirming your clients’ strengths is one of the best ways to create a collaborative partnership, encourage their learning and boost their confidence. This comes in especially handy if you work with ESL authors, job seekers, new authors or anyone who is entering a new genre or role. Trusting their text or important document […]
Emergency Linguistics: The Translation of Public Health Information in Emergency Situations
Every act of communication is an act of translation. Gregory Rabassa, translator of Spanish and Portuguese fiction The translation of public health information is critical in emergency situations, particularly in a country like Canada that welcomes thousands of immigrants every year whose mother tongue is not English or French. A new discipline has been proposed, […]
Oh, for those pre-pandemic days when “zoom” was just another word. For me, it mostly conjured up the “zoom-zoom” of that catchy Mazda ad. Once in a while, it was a video platform I used for teaching webinars or meeting authors about book projects. Now it’s a fatigue. In the COVID-19 world, media outlets from […]
The Editor’s Letter
The editor’s letter — the first substantive communication you have with a client — is the most important task in any editorial project. It provides the opportunity to give your assessment, raise questions and establish a relationship. If this exchange is successful, the myriad other tasks should follow seamlessly. In this scenario, you’ve been hired […]
The Performance of a Text
If someone says, “How about some music,” and you say, “Sure — Beethoven’s Fifth?” do you think they’ll be happy if you just hand them a printed copy of the score? A musical score is intended to be performed, and you don’t have a performance without musicians, a conductor, and the stage and lighting crew. […]
But Is It Art?
Is writing art? And if it is, what is editing? If we say writing is “artful,” or “artistic” or “an art,” we mean that we appreciate it aesthetically and admire it for the skill it evinces. But if we say not “writing is an art” but “writing is art” — or “this text is a […]
Alone at the Intersection of Editing and Engineering
This post is part of a new series of case studies by and for in-house editors. The focus of this series is on the personal experiences and various roles of in-house editors. A post will appear on the Editors’ Weekly every other month. If you’re interested in writing a post for this series, please email the Member Services Committee. […]
Yeet Citationality: Yippie-ki-yay!
The voting is in, and the American Dialect Society’s Slang Word of the Year is… yeet. Yeet is not so well known to oldsters, but it is in vogue among the youth. Its popularity demonstrates a central fact of how vocabulary spreads. It also leads us to Bugs Bunny, Clark Gable and Judith Butler. People […]
Winning in the Freelance Game
Being a freelancer is hard. When clients don’t have work for you, you cease to exist for them even though your livelihood depends on them or on people like them. You need to be a team player, but often you will be dropped from the team abruptly when a project ends. This demands resilience. Here […]
Learning Baby Talk
As editors, we rely more than most on our communication skills. Whether we’re conversing with clients, sharing knowledge within the editing community or sculpting a client’s words to help them shine their brightest, our communication skills impact the success of our work and relationships. Nearly all the time, we use these skills in tandem with […]
The Inner Editor: Please Allow Me To … Interrupt You
On Facebook recently, a colleague reported being the victim of a phone hijacking. You might recognize the feeling. A potential client calls to ask about editing services and then spends the better part of an hour telling her story with barely a breath between sentences, leaving you with no room to speak. There it is. […]
The Perils of Not Knowing
One of the downsides of freelance editing is that you’re not there (wherever “there” may be) to explain your thinking on occasions when it might be appropriate to do so. Furthermore, you’re probably unaware that such occasions have even arisen. When I had in-house jobs, I learned a lot from bosses and colleagues. In my […]
May I Help You?
“Hello, Ms. Client? I’m Sue Archer from Customer Relations, and I’m calling to follow up with you about your complaint.” I’ve performed a number of difficult jobs in my life, but by far the most challenging one was a call centre role where I dealt solely with complaints. Every day it was my job to […]
How Skype Helped Support a Family Editing Tradition
Upon retirement from their teaching careers at the University of Saskatchewan, my late mother, Sonia Morris, and her sister, Roma Franko, embarked on a labour of love: translating Ukrainian literature into English. For many years they shared desk space in one another’s homes in Saskatoon. Roma focused on translating, and Sonia on editing. I provided […]
What Do Editors Need To Know Now?
The volatile state of the publishing industry today—and, by extension, the editing profession—can sometimes feel pretty daunting. Digital disruptions to the book, magazine, and newspaper segments of the industry in particular are like an ongoing series of earthquake tremors beneath what previously felt like steady ground. Technological innovations have brought new forms of reading and […]