Of late, I’ve been dipping my feet a little into the Editing end of things.
Yes. Editing with a capital E. Heh.
I’m mostly a writer, but given how I’ve been working in an editorial environment for a good few years, I believe I have gleaned enough relevant wisdom to take on some small editing projects.
So I have mustered some courage and had a go at the smattering of editing roles that have landed in my lap in recent times. Can’t 100% say that I’ve always handled them well, but I do think that I gave each of them my best shot.
What I’m here to talk about, actually, is a terribly upsetting predicament that unfortunately seems to be a recurring theme in my editorial dealings.
You might wonder what exactly I’m going on and on about, my dear Reader.
Well, it’s simply this: So many people out there seem to be unwilling to pay a decent fee for editing services. Well, writing services too. Probably just any form of editorial services, I guess.
Now, I know I need to tread a bit carefully here as I discuss this topic.
Generally, I don’t like to talk about my paid writing gigs because I don’t think it’s particularly professional to quote experiences I have with clients (or potential ones). However, I’d like to say a little bit of something here because I think it’s a point worth bringing up.
With no mention of specific names or incidents… dear Reader, please tell me…
How is it you can spend thousands on a single inanimate object (like a smartphone, for example) and yet stinge so much on remunerating your (quite literally) poor writer/editor?
A smartphone costs thousands because so much effort went into sourcing and assembling all those tiny electronic components that, when put together, can work magic and mysteriously connect you to the rest of the universe as found on the World Wide Web.
Well, now. Let’s take a moment to consider this, shall we?
Just as much effort goes into sorting out your words from your sentences, rearranging your sentences into intelligible paragraphs, and building your paragraphs into a compelling story.
In fact, I think it’s highly probable that there are so many more words in your manuscript that require processing than the number of parts that you find in your average digital device.
But it’s alright, I suppose. Go invest your resources into those items that quickly depreciate over time.
Words written have the potential to be immortalised. To earn you a far reaching good reputation that might result in the wise things you said being quoted for generations to come.
Oh, but you don’t care, do you, my dear Reader? Forgive my sarcasm. Perhaps it’s just a temporary bad season for me.
Well, anyway, in case you might have been wondering about the title of this post…
Here’s the dilemma: Should fees that I’ve quoted for above mentioned editing tasks be lowered for the sake of accommodating the (somewhat unreasonable) demands of potential clients? Or should I let dead ends run their course since it’s good to do your work with dignity and to be paid what you’re worth?
Let me know what you think. Although I can wager a guess already as it is.