Step away from the curlers and make-up, put down the sledge hammer, and think about this for a second. How many times have you heard, “Why hire a professional when I can do it myself?” How many times have the words passed your own lips, “That’s too much money to pay someone else, I’ll do it and save bucks”? Are you willing to admit that you have scrolled through the pages of Pinterest, and considered making the five-tier cake for your three-year-old daughter’s upcoming soiree as you sit diligently at the sewing machine crafting her Beauty and the Beast replicate ball gown? You have to work hard to make up for the baby picture thing.
What about that time that you attempted to find a solution to curling your hair without using curling products, but thought headbands could do it?
Or better, that time that your husband said he could build a new deck?
Can we all agree that doing our own tattoo is at least a big no-no?
I believe that I have made my point. Most of us have passed around a funny photo mocking a messed up project or a typo in a awkward place, and that is exactly why I think we need to have a heart to heart discussion. Lean in. Closer. Just because you can do it yourself, doesn’t mean you should.
My point is this. The internet has busted down some barriers that have been in place for hundreds of years. This is a good thing. More and more of you are being heard, sharing your stories, and inspiring others to do the same. Many of you are great orators and some are amazing writers. When a Youtuber, comedian, performer, or speaker prepares to make their work public, there is generally a lot of rehearsal and editing that goes into that final product.
The same used to be said of articles and books, but sadly many are adopting a philosophy that editors are inconsequential. After all, there’s Grammarly, and spell check; we can be our own editor, right? Sadly, no. You are a biased reader to your own work. You know what you mean to say, but often those words are not what you put on the page. Having your mother or brother read your work doesn’t count either; they like you, and are going to tell you that whatever you wrote is great. They don’t want you to be sad or frustrated. Besides, editors are much more than punctuation and grammar gurus. Editors help make your work masterful by improving your content and giving you outside perspective to make your work better. An editor is your advocate, coach, and overall best friend in the world. They get in the trenches with you and invest their might, mind, and strength to help you do your best work.
I guess the bottom line is this. Writing is a craft; one that has been worked on and revolutionized throughout thousands of years of human existence. Treat it as the art that it really is; treat your work with respect, and make it the best it can be. Get yourself an editor; it might just save you from having an embarrassing fail blasted all over the web. I must also credit my wonderful and beautiful Jeanne, who edits all my work; editors need editors too.