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Subject:RE: Pilot Editing Study? From:Melissa Nelson <melmis36 -at- hotmail -dot- com> To:techwr-l List <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com>, Ali Ferguson <aliferg -at- gmail -dot- com> Date:Fri, 4 Apr 2008 09:26:20 -0400
I agree with everything Geoff says. The biggest thing I have learned in my editor role is to not assume I know what the writer is trying to say, then correcting it on what I THINK he/she wants to say. Discussing what you are editing with the author before hand is a big help! I used to get things in my email that just said "Edit this!" and when I first started I would, and I would get a cranky author who insisted he meant something that to me made no sense!
Also be gentle in corrections. I remember doing editing for the Sales Manager at a former job and he would pitch a fit if I said he spelled some incorrectly...but was really cool if I corrected a "typo". It used to crack me up...in other words, the guy was a great speller and a lousy typist! :)
I guess what I am trying to say is that in editing people skills are very important. I do not think that was stressed enough to me in my technical editing course. Good luck! :)
> From: ghart -at- videotron -dot- ca> Subject: Pilot Editing Study?> Date: Fri, 4 Apr 2008 08:44:17 -0400> To: techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com; aliferg -at- gmail -dot- com> > Ali Ferguson wondered: <<I am currently doing a pilot study for my > Technical Editing Class. I am interested in knowing what practicing > technical editors believe are the most important skills/qualities > necessary for becoming a successful technical editor. For this > question, please just provide a brief response about what you think > are the most important skills a technical editor must possess. From > the answers to this open-ended question, I will then identify the > variables for successful editing and develop a more fine-tuned survey.>>> > Obviously, and non-negotiably, you need to learn how to edit: that > means the grammatical underpinnings and strong (re)writing skills, > but more importantly the mental tools that let you empathize with > both the author and the reader, since both have needs that must be > met, often requiring compromise. This suggests a less-familiar set of > essential skills, namely communication skills: to be truly effective, > editing must become a dialogue with the author and a collaboration, > not a monologue or a dictation.> > Another widely unrecognized skill that most writers would benefit > from: knowing the difference between what you know and what you think > you know. Writers who are being edited have the editor to save them > from foolish statements, but we editors rarely have anyone other than > the author to catch our errors. Thus, we need to learn more humility > than many of us innately possess. (Fortunately, I make enough > mistakes to be frequently reminded of my fallibility. Being married > also helps. <g>)> > Tool skills are important, as modern editing may be even more time- > pressured than traditional editing, and these skills are increasingly > moving online (see below for my book, for instance). But the really > important skills are a good grasp of language and an ability to share > that skill with the author to help the author communicate successfully.> > > ----------------------------------------------------> -- Geoff Hart> ghart -at- videotron -dot- ca / geoffhart -at- mac -dot- com> www.geoff-hart.com> --------------------------------------------------> ***Now available*** _Effective onscreen editing_> (http://www.geoff-hart.com/home/onscreen-book.htm)> > Print version: http://stores.lulu.com/store.php?fStoreID=1505747> > ^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^^> > Create HTML or Microsoft Word content and convert to Help file formats or > printed documentation. Features include support for Windows Vista & 2007 > Microsoft Office, team authoring, plus more.> http://www.DocToHelp.com/TechwrlList> > True single source, conditional content, PDF export, modular help.> Help & Manual is the most powerful authoring tool for technical> documentation. Boost your productivity! http://www.helpandmanual.com> > ---> You are currently subscribed to TECHWR-L as melmis36 -at- hotmail -dot- com -dot- > > To unsubscribe send a blank email to > techwr-l-unsubscribe -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com> or visit http://lists.techwr-l.com/mailman/options/techwr-l/melmis36%40hotmail.com> > > To subscribe, send a blank email to techwr-l-join -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com> > Send administrative questions to admin -at- techwr-l -dot- com -dot- Visit> http://www.techwr-l.com/ for more resources and info.>
Create HTML or Microsoft Word content and convert to Help file formats or
printed documentation. Features include support for Windows Vista & 2007
Microsoft Office, team authoring, plus more. http://www.DocToHelp.com/TechwrlList
True single source, conditional content, PDF export, modular help.
Help & Manual is the most powerful authoring tool for technical
documentation. Boost your productivity! http://www.helpandmanual.com
You are currently subscribed to TECHWR-L as archive -at- web -dot- techwr-l -dot- com -dot-