Editing: A challenge for any editorBy Bruce T. Anderson, VP FOR BULLETIN EDITORS
Editing either your work or someone else who has submitted their article for you to include in your chapter bulletin is a challenge. There are many reasons that our editing falls apart at times. We don't always read what we write. We see the words we wrote but they aren't the same as if we read them. Our eyes glide over the page and overlook extra or omitted words or inaccuracies. Of course there is an answer to this problem - proofreading carefully and critically. Almost everything I write, I give to someone else to look over for any mistakes. If this is not possible, set your writing aside for a few days and then go back and re-read to find any errors.
Many of us think that we don't have any problems in editing. We allow problems in others but we see ourselves as not having any problems. The only way to correct this problem is to simply accept the fact that we do have some problems in editing.
Many editors don't want to insult their readers by writing articles that are above their heads. Even if this were true, we need to show some consideration for those who are not the intellectual readers that we think they are. Write to express, not to impress.
Editors don't think clearly before they start to write. We speak more clearly than we write. It is easier to give a speech on a subject than to write a speech on that same subject. Writing seems to tie up our thinking. The result is either wasted time or writing that is too vague, too general, too awkward, or too wordy. Try saying aloud what you have put down on paper, record it and play it back and see if it still gives you the same message.
Perhaps the biggest reason for errors in editing is just that we are too lazy to review what we have written or what others have written. We look over articles and assume that they are written well and that they say what the writer wanted. The solution to this problem is to critically look over all articles several times and make the proper corrections.