I learned something the other day that I’d never realized before.
Before we get into this, watch this short clip from the Simpsons.
Anyway, what I learned was that what we consider editing is not really editing. It’s really two separate processes: revision, and then editing.
Technically, when we cut things and move things about to improve content, we are revising. And when we check grammar, spelling, and punctuation, we are editing.
Now, this is admittedly nothing more than semantics. “Editing” has been expanded over the years to include most everything past the writing part of the process: revision, proofreading, and even formatting can be considered editing by publishing standards.
But I admit that learning this gave me a bit of a start. How was it that I, a professional editor of many years, didn’t technically know this distinction? How many other editors are also unaware of it?
It just goes to show that you can learn something new at any time. I know, at times, it can be easy to say that you know what you’re doing, that you’ve got nothing left to learn, and sometimes it can feel that way, when you see the same information over and over, but it’s always good to keep an open mind.
After all, who knows what will be the next piece of information to rock your world?
Ever learned anything that made you pause? (Writing or otherwise?)
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