It's because my client Marian Schembari just published an article, "Why I Hired an Editor to Help Me Polish My Personal Essay," that cuts to the heart of why I love my job.
In it, she talks about the process of writing, editing, and pitching a personal essay (hers was ultimately snapped up by xoJane) over six months. While all writing is personal in some sense, this piece--an essay about grappling with and recovering from an emotionally abusive relationship--was exceptionally so. She wrestled with getting it just right. How could she share unflattering details without coming across as unsympathetic? How could she tell her story, which involves abuse, without it turning into a hit piece about her abuser? How could she show how far her thinking has come without throwing her teenage self under the bus? She knew she needed a fresh, objective set of eyes, but finding an editor who could streamline and strengthen her work without undermining her voice was a challenge.
As she put it,
I’d never experienced anything like Kaye’s edits. It was my story, but better. They were my words, but tighter. I found the magical unicorn: An editor who understood my style while bringing her own talents to the table.
The rest of her essay interviews other editors, talks about editorial communication styles, and lays out what you should look for in an editor. You can read it here.