Every writer needs a good editor and the starting point for me was the Writer’s Workshop (http://www.writersworkshop.co.uk/index.asp). For the early drafts of my first book, I had two different editors that basically told me to rewrite it all; advice that I was slightly reluctant to take although I can now see that they were right. By draft five, I decided to ask for a female editor and Harry Bingham of WW suggested Debi Alper (http://debialper.blogspot.com/). Now Debi is a published author, but more than that she has editorial skills that are close to supernatural. Not only that, she actually did a copy-edit on my first novel more as an act of charity, for which I am eternally grateful because it resulted in a book which, if not publishable by the mainstream, pleased me and encouraged me to keep writing….and so it goes on to Book 6 (Flight Into Darkness – more later) which is where we are now.
We finally met at York last year (http://writing-community.writersworkshop.co.uk/forum/top/105) and she was exactly as I had imagined her to be; smart, sassy and the sort of woman that takes no prisoners, the kind you would like to get drunk with just for the fun of it.
So, there you have it. A good editor is like a good teacher who can take a rubbish writer and point them in the right direction, not just by editing but by being a friend and giving the best advice that is a necessary adjunct to the mechanics of writing. Debi has an instinct for that and has an eye that it so incisive it’s scary! Many thanks, Debi. I promise always to be faithful to you.