Have you ever considered pursuing a career as an Editor? This interview takes you through the ups and downs you can expect, what it takes to land the job, what you can expect to earn and more. This is a true career story as told to DiversityJobs and is one of many interviews with writers and publishers. I am a writer/editor and have worked in this capacity for more than twenty years. As a writer, I write mostly nonfiction. I have written seven commercially published books, and have had many articles published in a variety of newspapers and magazines. I also write devotionals for students involved in a local sports ministry, as well as write web copy for clients of a local ad agency. Right now, I have two books in the works. As an editor, I edit manuscripts for both new and well-established authors. Sometimes I work for the author; other times, I work for the publisher on a contract basis. As you know, no two jobs are ever alike! As far as editing goes, just three words say it all: Clean it up! I check every word, sentence, paragraph, and chapter for things like accuracy, organization, correct spelling, and proper word usage. I try to eliminate redundancies and overuse of certain words and phrases. I make sure nothing is going to be confusing for the reader, at the same time making sure I preserve the author's intended message, style, and tone. I also make sure the style and formatting follow the publisher's guidelines in order to keep everything consistent. Editing involves a lot of back-and-forth with the author, typesetter, and publisher, and sometimes you have to be quite the diplomat in order to keep everyone pleased with the progress, focused on the goal, and “on the same page." On a scale of 1 to 10, I would rate my job a 9! It would easily be a 10 if you could remove the deadlines and eliminate occasional computer problems. This is definitely my calling! I have a report card from second grade--the teacher had written in the comments on the back that she "expected to see Angie's writing in a magazine one day"! Clearly, I have loved words and writing from day one. That I would major in English/writing was really a no-brainer. But when I landed my first "real" writing job after college writing for a newspaper, I was on cloud nine, just thinking about the fact that I was going to get paid to write things for people. I started out writing about business promotions and livestock reports for the business section in Little Rock, Arkansas--not exactly glamorous reporting, but you would have thought it was for the front page of the New York Times, I was so excited. One "unique" thing that has taken place during my career as a writer is that after my daughter came along, I decided to try to amp up my income because of the added expenses of a new baby. I glanced through the want ads of the local paper in the VERY small town we live in just outside of Little Rock to see if there might be some typing I could take in or something. But I saw an ad that said "writer's assistant needed." Turns out a well-published Christian author lives in my community, and he had been diagnosed with a degenerative retinal disease that was destroying his vision. He had reached the point that he could no longer see the computer screen, so needed someone to transcribe/edit the books he was writing. I sent him my resume and he hired me right away. He became a dear friend and mentor, and was the one who first suggested I try my hand at writing a book. He does not need me to transcribe anything anymore because of an amazing computer he has now that "reads" everything back to him, but I still edit everything he writes--which by now is well over twenty books and probably thousands of articles. One major challenge I face--well, I guess it's more of a frustration than a challenge--is that no matter what an excellent job I do, it's the mistakes I make that the clients and readers will notice. I can produce 99 error-free pages, transforming clumsy phrasing and eliminating redundancies, correcting blunders, fact-checking obscure references, and polishing the prose to perfection. The client/readers may never know how much time/effort I put into those 99 pages. But let me miss a typo on the 100th page--that's the one thing EVERYONE will notice and call me on! I try to just take a deep breath and move on. Because of the things I mentioned above, and because deadlines are essential in the world of publishing, it can be a very stressful job, at times. But through the years I've managed to get better at managing the stress--budgeting my time helps, taking breaks helps, setting realistic deadlines helps, etc. But the stress that I have to handle is a very small price to pay for the unbelievable freedom and flexibility this job has given me to take care of my "life" responsibilities of being a wife, mom, daughter, friend, volunteer, etc. Salary fluctuates so widely, depending on what books are out there and selling, and how many editing projects I take on, that I really cannot provide a consistent figure. I have logged enough experience that I can make sure that my fees make the work well worth my time. I plan my workload around family vacations, I give myself plenty of days off here and there in between projects, and if needed, I can always bring some of my work with me. I enjoy both writing and editing, so if I'm sitting at the beach "working" on a manuscript, it really does not usually feel like work to me. I strongly recommend getting a degree in English/writing--I use the mechanical skills, research skills, writing skills I learned in college every single day that I am working. Since I am freelance, I do not have a clue what qualifications the publishers are looking for in the editors they want to hire in-house. I would encourage anyone to go for it, if they feel editing is their calling! Books are not going away, they are just changing form. And as long as people are reading them--whether by flipping pages or scrolling down their Kindle screen--we will always need both writers and editors. In a way, more people are writing than ever before--just think how many blogs are out there. If I were just starting out, I would make sure I learned the ins and outs of electronic publishing. I would love to be doing the very same thing in five years that I am doing today. Every project is different and every client is different, so it never gets old to me. Editor career image from Shutterstock
June 06, 2012
Getting through to the job interview stage in the hiring process means the employer believes you have the right experience and skills for the job on paper. But now comes the real deal-breaker: whether you can communicate those skills effectively in person and come off as the right fit for the company's workplace culture.
There are typical red flags employers watch for in job interviews. Any one red flag can reduce your chances of getting a job offer, so here's what you need to avoid in your next job interview...
1. Poor Communication
This includes everything from talking too little, talking too much, or simply having poor nonverbal behavior like a lack of eye contact or making the situation uncomfortable with poor body language. When it comes to questions and answers, a job candidate who can't provide effective responses to questions that are necessary to assess their experience and skills is always a problem.
Be prepared to address every point you have on your resume. And when an employer presents a follow-up question like "Tell me more about..." they are trying to dig deeper either because they're curious, or you provided an insufficient response.
An inability to communicate well in a job interview will leave the employer questioning whether you do have the experience and skills you say you have on paper.
2. Question Of Permanency
When an employer puts out a job offer, it's going to be to someone they believe is committed to the job—not to someone who's simply looking to fill in an employment gap until a more fitting job comes along. Any reasonable job seeker wouldn't present such a front, but sometimes casual conversation can lead you to say things that are better off unsaid.
Avoid talking about challenges in your job search or how you were looking for a job in fashion marketing, but somehow you're now applying for this job in healthcare marketing. It brings to question if you're really interested in the job the employer has to offer.
Also, avoid talking about any long-distance relationships and try not to mention that your spouse and kids remain in another state. The employer will question if your personal situation may impact your job loyalty down the road if a relocation package is not going to be a part of the offer. And if they ask where you want to be in three years, answer with a position that corresponds with their growth opportunities.
3. Bad Talk
The purpose of the interview is to demonstrate why you're a great candidate for the job and effectively convey what you have to offer. It's not about letting your frustrations out about a boss you don't like or people you don't like working with. Any bad-mouthing simply sends a negative message about your character. It'll also make the employer question if you can manage workplace relationships professionally.
Often, bad-mouthing occurs when employers ask questions like, "Why are you leaving your current job?" Stay focused on answering with a positive response that relates back to the goal of improving yourself and utilizing what you're capable of offering.
4. Not Dressing The Part
Yes, it's wrong to judge a book by its cover. But in a job interview, this is what happens. If you're not dressed the part to look like you suit the job, it's going to be hard for the employer to see that, too.
It might also make the employer think that if you can't even manage to present a well-groomed appearance for a job interview that you'll be a slacker when on the job—and that's not going to work, especially if this is a position where you may have interface with customers or business partners that require a professional appearance.
5. It's All About The Money
Salary is a factor in determining whether the job offer is ultimately right for you, but bringing it up too early in the interview process comes off as though you're only in it for the money. And when you're the one to bring it up, it puts you at a disadvantage. You create a situation where you need to reveal your desired salary before the employer offers insight to what they're considering, which may end up being much lower or much higher from what the employer has budgeted.
The point is to first make the most impressive mark you can. If you're the one they want, they'll bring up the topic of salary and you'll have an idea of what they're offering, which you can then further negotiate so it meets your expectations.
Employers take into account many factors during the job interview. It's not just about the experience and skills you put on paper. Now, you can avoid all the typical red flags to keep yourself in the running.
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This article was originally published at an earlier date.
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For years now, I have seen hustle-culture being glorified, and it frustrates me. The idea of earning respect by overworking yourself isn't healthy. It just isn't. As a small business owner, I fully understand the word hustle. I grind daily. But as human beings, we have limits, so I suggest that we must be intentional with how we hustle.
I like to think about it in running terms. Hustle culture would have you believe that you can sprint forever. But that isn't possible. At some point, your legs are simply going to give out and hurl you face-first into the ground. Intentional hustle, on the other hand, is like doing a 100-yard dash a few times. You have a goal, you meet it, and then you have a bit of time to rest and reset. The important thing here: it's sustainable.
If you are working too much, not only are you not spending enough time with friends and family, but you are also robbing yourself of opportunities to take on projects that will benefit your career in the long run. Burnout is real and so is your body's need for sleep and self-care.
Sleep is a magical thing. A study done in 2018 by the American Academy of Sleep Medicine found those who reported getting 5 to 6 hours experienced 19 percent more productivity loss, and those who got less than 5 hours of sleep experienced 29 percent more productivity loss when compared with those who regularly got 7 to 8 hours of sleep.
To see the full results of the study click here.
Discover Your Flow
You'll notice that there are different levels of stress and flow in your work and life. It's not about finding a perfect balance between the two, but rather finding the sweet spot for you. You need to understand what makes you flourish and what drains you, so you can plan your days and projects and accordingly.
Planning well and taking notice of what you enjoy will allow you to steer your free time and career towards projects and learnings that light you up. Hustle on things that make you happy. It is harder to burn out doing things that you truly enjoy.
When you work too hard, you miss out on the nuances of the world that matter the most to you. You can see a beautiful sunset and not even notice it if you're racing to get done with a project at work. Conversely, when you stop working so hard, you have time to enjoy life's little pleasures, recharge, and be present for the people in your life.
There are so many awe-inspiring things and people out in the world, but you have to look up from your screen to see it all. As a creative, I know without a doubt that my work gets stronger when I take the time to meander and explore the world around me.
Being intentional with how you choose to hustle is the key. A strong work ethic is incredibly valuable, but the idea of ambition as a lifestyle, not so much.
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