August 2016: Working Editor's Toolkit Panel

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WEToolkitOn Wednesday 31 August 2016, Editors Victoria and RMIT hosted a special panel event, the Working Editor’s Toolkit. Designed for emerging editors, students and editors interested in changing streams, the panel brought together three specialists for a conversation on the work of editors across disciplines.

With Jackey Coyle moderating the chat, Kate Goldsworthy, Editor with Affirm Press, Tim Fisher, Editorial Director with Broadsheet Media, and John Ryan, Director of Sitegeist, discussed their approaches to editing for publishing, digital media, online and corporate clients. The conversation ranged from the skills required to work across platforms, the best way to network and how to gain experience as an emerging editor to the importance of understanding the client brief and the brilliance of brevity. Memorably, John Ryan declared there should be a bounty on superfluous words!

As always, CQ provided a warm welcome and delicious buffet dinner to over 110 guests. Tertiary institutions across Melbourne were invited and well-represented. Students and staff attended from RMIT, Melbourne, Swinburne, Deakin and Victoria universities, Box Hill TAFE and Melbourne Polytechnic, along with members and guests of Editors Victoria. It was a wonderful night of networking and knowledge sharing.

The evening was sponsored by Editors Victoria and organised by students from RMIT’s Associate Degree in Professional Writing and Editing. Given the success and excellent feedback, we hope this will be an annual event.

Finally, we leave you with a tip from each of our panellists.

Editing is intensive. Make the most of your time with the Pomodoro Technique: Focus absolutely for 25 minutes; take a two- to five-minute break; start again; repeat three times. After two hours, take a half-hour break, nap or walk. You’ll do more, better, in less time!
Jackey Coyle, President, Editors Victoria

Digital editing: Understand what you want readers to actually do (buy, understand, share, respond, laugh, comment) before you start editing. Include this in your brief if possible.
John Ryan, Content Strategist, Sitegeist

With the exception perhaps of your parents, nobody is obliged to read what you write. So if you want to be read, write for your reader, not for yourself. Everyone’s time is precious and hard to earn. If you’re going to take it from them, make it count.
Tim Fisher, Editorial Director, Broadsheet

The most important thing, for me, is to remember that no book will ever be perfect. I've had to let my perfectionism go, as much as I can, after sending so many books to print. As an editor, you aim for perfection and always do your very best, but you have to know that you can't get everything right 100% of the time.
Kate Goldsworthy, Editor, Affirm Press

Sally Holdsworth