Some people look down at their draft and ask themselves “Do I need an editor?’.
You may notice e I just used the double quote ” in the USA style and then the single ‘ UK style on the same sentence. That answers the question.
We all need an editor.
For a writer the most important thing you can do is make sure your work is properly edited. We all need an editor. No exceptions.
When looking back over my own work my brain fills in the gaps and the page reads exactly the way it’s supposed to. That helps prove that my brain is still working, even when my grasp of English isn’t. You know that silly meme ‘if you can read this…’
Not all editors are created equal, so you need to find someone who not only knows their craft but gels well with your voice as a writer. You also need to work out at which points you need the Concept Editor (primarily creative and craft stuff such as overall structure, consistency, holes in the plot, pacing) and when you need the Line Editor (primarily technical and craft stuff like grammar, typos, and correct word usage).
You need a good editor because…
- Spellcheck lies.
- ‘Teh’ is not a word
- That word, I do not think it means what you think it does.
- Pacing, rhythm isn’t just a dancer.
- Plot holes, the reader can’t know what you don’t tell them and rarely likes it when you break your own rules.
- Editors have little-bitty baby editors to feed.
- You need more red ink and strange hieroglyphics on your manuscript.
Most importantly you need an editor to make sure your book gets to the reader with no errors that will distract them from your writing. Grammar, typos, potholes, these may seem trivial next to the glowing genius of your Opus Magnum, but may readers will simply give up if there are too many flaws jolting them out of the story.