Editor Debtor

An idea slowly came across my mind today.

The origin of the idea came from my last story submission, in which I went ahead and shot Lord Lucan a small amount of money for his help in editing the beast. You see, when favors become habitual, it’s time to stop calling them favors and start paying for it. While I don’t mind a few freebie edits between friends, continued use of that aid should be compensated.

After I submitted my story, I began to consider the possibility of perhaps paying for Lucan’s editor certifications. I cannot claim to fully understand the system but I am aware of some of the fees.

And I began to think, “You know. There’s an opportunity here.”

Editing is not an easy task, especially for the author of the work itself. Nothing eats away at our self esteem quite like catching every mistake, every poorly constructed sentence and every moment where we sit up and ask, “What the hell was I thinking?”

That is why I feel it pays to have another party handle editing. While I cannot claim that a friend is impartial, he is certainly more impartial than the author himself (him/her, you know what I mean.)

So I’ve quietly began contemplating setting up a certification fund, the money generated would pay for the certifications to transform hobby editors into professional ones. I cannot foresee vast sums for edited works. But a few dollars here, a pound or two there for each piece can accumulate over time. The editor could keep track of works he’s edited so he can claim partial credit for proofreading, letting them build up a portfolio of work and contacts.

I’ve been scratching my chin, thinking about the work that would have to be done:
1) Research into the guilds and associations, which differ base on Britain and the US. Many of my writing friends are from the UK. (Paypal handles currency conversions, so that is not an issue.)
2) How would the divying of funds work? Should each junior editor get their own account or should it be pooled?
3) How would we handle failures of editors to finish editing on time? Many of my friends and I have started to work under deadlines and limited submission windows. Time’s a factor.

Other questions are undoubtedly going to arise. Leave a comment if you’ve a thought, please.

Go For! …Silver…

Bad news, it's all I got. Good news, silver is a weakness of werewolves and germs. Take that, Gold Ticketers!

Bad news, it's all I got. Good news, silver is a weakness of werewolves and germs. Take that, Gold Ticketers!

It has been an interesting weekend.

Let’s start with Friday. I was very prepared to purchase a Gold Ticket for the Black Library Weekender. I set an alarm for 8 pm GMT and left the Shoutbox open so the guys could talk about it. I set up a long distance plan for a day with Verizon and made sure that my finances were in order.

And everything still went wrong.

About 3 pm EST, a recruiter called. The phone interview went well, but I wasn’t paying attention to other things. For starters, 3 pm EST is 8 pm GMT; I got bad information from a website.

Of course, the guys were yelling about this on the Shoutbox. But I was on the phone, pacing about and not paying a moment of attention. When I was finished, it was too late. The Gold Tickets had sold out. I had missed my chance.

I settled for a Silver Ticket. Yeah, it’s not what I wanted. But it might be a good thing in the end. I’ve never been to the UK or Europe. The spare $295, the price difference of the two ticket grades, can be blown on staying for another couple of days to see London. Perhaps I can even start my vacation in Germany and make my way towards London before going to Nottingham, and leaving on Sunday night.

Hell, another day and night in Europe would be great. I already set aside some time and money to see at least London, but settling for the Silver can really be more of a blessing than a curse. There’s so much more I can do. So much more to see. One opportunity might be lost, but it just creates another.

There’s plenty to do. I have to get my passport. I have to figure out exactly where I’m going, and the best time to buy plane tickets. If I intend to go to Germany, I should strengthen my German skills. I have to figure out the money conversion, research travel arrangements and lodging reservations.

In other news, the idea for what maybe my first novel has popped up in my head. I’ve jotted down some ideas and know some of the themes I want to use. But there’s plenty of research to be done first. I also have to finish my short stories and prepare for the next Black Library submission window.

Interviews on Tuesday and Wednesday, by the way. Ahhh, where does the time go…