Is It Time for New Glasses?

Yes, those are my stylish, new glasses. They afford me a new perspective.I’ve written about perspective previously, but it’s usually been in relation to seeing oneself correctly – to have the right amount of confidence or to act in a manner worthy of one’s business and calling. Perspective, though, has a wide variety of applications. In this instance, the application is to the writing life.

Some writers also are editors. Some aren’t. The writers who live in both worlds learn to use different perspectives. When they work in the writing world, they function according to the writing perspective. When they are in editor mode, they change their perspective.

The writer is, in some ways, uncontrolled chaos or unbridled creativity. Those things are necessary. They’re healthy. It doesn’t do to stop mid-creation and to wonder whether a word is the right word or to debate using a semicolon instead of a comma. Such things belong to the editor’s realm. To stop mid-creation almost always means a stalemate. Very little can be written if one constantly is doubting the choices one is making. It also doesn’t do to start editing only to pursue tangents. The job of the editor is to identify gaps in the writing and to streamline the writing that exists in order to make it more powerful.

Of course, the two roles overlap. They aren’t nice and neat. They slip into one another, often without a person noticing. Nothing is wrong with that; it simply means that a person has absorbed both the writer perspective and the editor one into his or her life. Nothing is wrong with seeking another person’s perspective, either. It often is crucial to the work, even if the writer also is an editor.

Comments

  1. SteveMarch says:

    So true, Erin!  I used to do a little editorial review work on the side for a textbook publisher, and while I don’t know that it changed my writing process substantially, it definitely had impact on my proof-reading of my own work.  As you say, the perspective is different.  Under the category of most interesting review/proof-reading tip I remember was this one: “Read your piece backwards!”  It’s a pain in the butt, and I don’t always have time for it, but it changes your perspective on the content SO dramatically that you catch a lot of stuff!

    •  @SteveMarch I’m a fan of reading my work aloud. It catches a lot of simple errors. Do you use that method? I haven’t tried reading a piece backwards. I may have to try that once I get into some of my longer writing projects.

      • SteveMarch says:

        Yep, I have used reading aloud and it is helpful.  Another tip is to print it for proofing.  I’m sure there is a deep psychological reason for this that I’m unaware of, but I’ve heard it from others so it’s not just my idea – for some reason it’s just easier to gloss over stuff on a screen.  And besides, printing it off is the only way you get to break out the red pen!!!

        •  @SteveMarch I’m a firm believer in killing trees (Sorry, trees.) and spilling ink. 🙂

        • SteveMarch says:

           @Erin F. Ha ha!  Yes, I’ve always told my “greener” counterparts that we must do our part to help the economy by keeping the lumber industry strong!

  2. Every writers have their own perspective, but to be in their chosen field they should always come up with several creative ideas that will anew the essence of being a writer, one that would inspire the reader.
     
    Regards,
    Vincent, design stylish of http://www.topfashionshades.com/sunglasses-styles/

  3. rhonancaldwell says:

    Every writers have their own perspective, but to be in their chosen field they should always come up with several creative ideas that will anew the essence of being a writer, one that would inspire the reader.
     
    Regards,
    Vincent, design stylish of http://www.topfashionshades.com/sunglasses-styles/

Trackbacks

  1. […] I’m the same way with other things, mostly my creative writing and Write Right. I’m often too close to those things. I can’t see them correctly. My inability to see them then produces a lack of confidence followed by a hesitation – I hesitate to claim the titles “writer,” “poet,” “artist,” “entrepreneur.” It’s only when I step away from my creative writing or Write Right that I can see what I have accomplished. I regain focus. […]