I’ve asked editor Stacy D. Holmes to visit today and share some little known knowledge with us today. I love what she has to say! Welcome, Stacy.
One word that can cause chills to run down the spine of a writer. The thought of the “all powerful editor” holding your precious manuscript in their hands to shred to pieces or, hopefully, see a spark of life, has led to many sleepless nights for those awaiting their fate in the publishing industry.
Does this sound like you?
Well, I’ll let you in on a secret that might give you just a little more sleep tonight. We are not “all powerful” (I still can’t fly or make the dirty dishes disappear with a snap of my fingers), and it is definitely not our goal to shred your dreams. We are not faceless monsters, or even remotely inhuman for that matter—in fact, we are all too human, only proven if you could see how we struggle with having to tell an author that their manuscript is not ready for publication, that they aren’t quite as far along in their dream as they hoped.
Instead of picturing the top floor of a brutishly tall office building, clean, crisp skirts and suits behind goliath desks, outboxes piled high with manuscripts riddled with big red slashes, picture your favourite teacher from school, or the coach who made a difference in the way you played and enjoyed your favourite sport.
At least, that is the way I hope my authors look at me. Not as some be all and end all of their manuscript, but as a coach who stands beside them, works with them, shows them where they can improve and encourages them to make their story the very best it can be. And, like with any sport, practice furthers your development and effort brings accomplishment.
Whether you are submitting to a publisher or using an independent editor, think of them as a mentor, someone waiting for you to submit, ready to assist you, excited to help you achieve your dreams.
Changing the way you think about editors can help get you a bit more sleep at night, because there is honestly no monster on the other end of the SEND button. Let’s be honest, if not for writers, there would be no need for editors. YOU are that important to us.
Now, that’s not to say you should be disrespectful or too casual in your correspondence to editors. As with a teacher or coach, there comes a certain respectability with the position, but most editors should also earn your respect by their actions and guidance whether through an encouraging rejection letter or during the editing process.
From this Mentor: Remember, there are often bumps in the road to your dreams. Don’t let fear of the unknown be one of them. Embrace the unknown and conquer the fear by asking questions and finding the answers, because answers can light up a whole new path you never even knew was there.
Biography: Stacy D. Holmes
15 years in the publishing industry have taught me many things—the most important being that dreams may not come easy, but they do come true.
My many hats include freelance editor, senior editor for The Wild Rose Press Inc. since 2007, published author in both long and short romantic fiction, administrative assistant and newsletter coordinator—together with wife and mother.
Feel free to visit my website at www.stacydholmes.com, and join me on my blog at www.stacydholmes.blogspot.com Tuesdays for tips, tales and thoughts on the publishing industry and Thursdays for Q&A—no question is too little, too silly or should be too embarrassing to ask—knowledge is the key that opens many doors. So, go ahead and ask me: QandA@stacydholmes.com.
I SO agree with you, Stacy. I’ve said so myself and am glad other editors will come out and enforce this. It’s so important that writers know where they stand and who we (editors) really are.
If you’ve read any of TWRP’s Honky Tonk Heart series- Those Violet Eyes, Sing to Me Cowboy, and so many more- why not let Stacy know what a great job she’s done bringing those wonderful stories to us? Yes, she’s that editor!
Stacy has invited you to visit her blog and ask questions and I truly hope you will do that, but for today you can ask her anything right here! Come up to the mic and ask your questions. What’s on your mind?
Thank you for coming to the Ranch today in the spur of a moment, Stacy.
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