Editing Is Inherently Subjective. Deal With It.

By | June 23, 2013

A recent exchange on a closed discussion group prompts the observation: Editing is, by definition, subjective.

Although it’s certainly true that some things are right or wrong — e.g., basic grammar or usage points, or conformance to a particular style manual — most stuff is actually a judgment call. Even, in many cases, peripheral usage points, when the writer and the editor are on opposite ends of the permissiveness spectrum.

Good editors reduce the violence to the writer’s natural style, allowing a competent writer’s voice to shine. (Incompetent writers are a different matter.)

Good writers recognize that the editor’s pen doesn’t write in black or white, but shades of grey, and cuts the editor a degree of slack.

Be Sociable, Share!

    • WrongAgain

      Good editors recognize that the writer’s pen doesn’t write in black or white, but shades of grey, and cuts the writer a degree of slack.