Editor. What comes to mind when you hear that term? Maybe you think of a curmudgeonly rule monger who quotes grammar rules and silently (or not so silently) judges your use of the serial comma or singular they. Perhaps you have flashbacks of getting back that graded English paper. You know, the one that your English teacher had reduced to thick red scribbles and crossings out.
While I do have a knack for good grammar and wield a red pen (both literally and figuratively), my philosophy is not to rap you, my clients, over the knuckles with grammar rule books. Instead, I believe in partnering with you, hunkering down in the trenches with you as you craft your work to reflect the vision in your head.
In The Copyeditor’s Handbook, Amy Einsohn explains that a copyeditor’s main concern is to achieve clear communication by addressing “4 Cs”: correctness, clarity, coherence, and consistency. I accomplish this by having a solid grasp of grammar and mechanics as well a respect for house style rules. Additionally, I keep your readers in mind. I’m the first audience your work meets, so any issues I run across are most likely issues your audience will have.
Then there’s you—the mastermind behind the words on the page. This is your work, not mine. Yes, the finished product should comply with language rules and be clear to your readers. But it should also maintain the true essence of your writing style. That’s why I won’t dive in and make broad, sweeping changes without consulting you. Instead, I’ll work closely with you to mold and polish your work until it’s one that you’re proud to put your name on.