Writing with an editor

I was just published for the first time; it was also the first time I worked with a professional editor to get an article in tip top shape. The entire experience was fantastic and I learned a lot about writing, word choice, and how to shape a piece.

The article came out of a very rough draft that was done last fall. I just started writing about the process I took to create a style guide when starting my job. It’s a topic I love thinking about, I did a talk on it last fall, and it felt right to expand it into an article or at least a blog post for this site. That little draft got pushed, pulled, prodded, thought about, revised, read by several people, and finally edited by a brilliant editor to become the article it is today.

I will admit, working with an editor was hard at times. She pushed me to think about things in a new way; to get out of my own head so that I could explain things in a way someone who isn’t as familiar with these concepts would understand them. Technical topics are hard to write about, but I feel so lucky that I worked with someone who was patient and helped me see the holes that needed to be filled in and where I may have prattled on a bit too much. With every round of revisions, I learned more than I can say and I am so thankful for the opportunity. I encourage folks who have ideas to go for it, A List Apart is always looking for new voices and I can verify that they are a lovely bunch.

Having worked on an app for writers, and therefore interacting more with people who write, has made me appreciative of how hard it is. But it’s also motivated me to write more; even the small blog posts that go up here, it is fun to think through things with words. There is nothing like finishing a piece, feeling good about it, and then letting it see the light of day. Sometimes, hard is so worth it, and writing is one of those times.