RE: Self-editing

Subject: RE: Self-editing
From: "Cardimon, Craig" <ccardimon -at- M-S-G -dot- com>
To: 'William Sherman' <bsherman77 -at- embarqmail -dot- com>, "'techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com'" <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com>
Date: Wed, 5 Nov 2014 12:24:41 +0000

Editing is something that happens by accident if there is time.

Schedules are generally too tight to allow for any editing.

Anyone who might be assigned to edit are really being borrowed from their regular jobs, which is kind of a no-no.

No one I meet has had any real editing training at all. "Who needs that? We have spell-check now."

I do the best I can in the extremely limited time I have.

-----Original Message-----
From: techwr-l-bounces+ccardimon=m-s-g -dot- com -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com [mailto:techwr-l-bounces+ccardimon=m-s-g -dot- com -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com] On Behalf Of William Sherman
Sent: Tuesday, November 04, 2014 8:11 PM
To: techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com
Subject: Re: Self-editing

Don't I wish.

This job used to have seven writers and a supervisor. One was really a database number cruncher who took parts and ECNs and put all the numbers into a program we could access and also produced product bulletins. One converted drawings on one system to work on the other, including tagging the part number callouts so they were live links. These went into the parts database and into the manuals. One concentrated on parts manuals, three on writing operators, maintenance, and service manuals, and one filled in wherever he was needed. We don't know what the supervisor did all day, other than play with databases.

The one converting drawings wanted more work writing, and it turned out he was an excellent editor, so we started using him to edit as much as possible, as we really needed it. The pace left a lot of things wrong and he was a blessing for the work.

Then we were hit with layoffs and it became three of us. One does parts manuals, the supervisor, and I do the operator, maintenance, and service manuals on my own. The supervisor has since found another job and left.
There is an old story about alligators and swamps that is appropriate.

I am trying to edit all the legacy work and my new material and I am finding LOTS of problems in the legacy material from the others and not so much in mine. I've looked at mine so often, unless it is bright red in 36 pt font, I won't see it.



Most writing jobs were self-editing. If they went too long, the editing became terrible. A week long project it wasn't bad, but a couple of months had it to the point most of us could find nothing. we tried peer editing as much as possible, but schedules didn't allow as much as we needed.


One job about 10 years ago had dedicated editors in one department. It was good and bad. They picked up a lot of errors and that was good. They would often rewrite and then it didn't mean the same as the language of the audience (software) as they tried to get it into regular English. So there was occasionally issues, but overall, it helped a lot.

Most jobs before that were frequently small to very small writing groups and did not have editors. You had to edit your own, and again, if the project ran too long, the editing went downhill.


----- Original Message -----
From: "Richard Hamilton" <dick -at- rlhamilton -dot- net>
To: <techwr-l -at- lists -dot- techwr-l -dot- com>
Sent: Saturday, November 01, 2014 3:57 PM
Subject: Self-editing


> I'm writing an article about editing, and I'm curious about what the folks
> on this list think about the state of editing in the corporate world
> today.
>
> I'm interested in any thoughts you have, but in particular, I have two
> questions:
>
> 1) Is your work edited by a dedicated editor?
>
> 2) If not, what strategies do you use to either peer-edit or self-edit
> your work?
>
> Best regards,
> Richard Hamilton
> -------
> XML Press
> XML for Technical Communicators
> http://xmlpress.net
> hamilton -at- xmlpress -dot- net


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Follow-Ups:

References:
Self-editing: From: Richard Hamilton
Re: Self-editing: From: William Sherman

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