What is(are) your area(s) of focus, and why did you select it (them)?
To date, I’ve primarily worked on nonfiction, mainly because those were the jobs I was getting. I do a little academic editing as well. I’d like to expand into fiction, so I recently took Copyediting Fiction 101 through the PEN Institute. Like every other PEN class I’ve taken, it was excellent! I also recently realized that I really don’t like substantive editing, so I’m narrowing my business focus to copyediting and proofreading.
What does a typical workday look like for you?
My goal is to work twenty hours a week, and most of that happens in the morning. I’ve noticed that once I hit that twenty-hour mark, it feels like everything else in my life starts spiraling out of control. Even though I’m no longer homeschooling, I still have a high schooler and a young adult at home who I want to be available for.
How do you manage your time?
Because I’m a morning person, that’s when I do most of my editing. I try to reserve afternoons for more mundane tasks and household stuff. My brain is mush by about 4:00 p.m., so I don’t try to work any later than that. And other than checking my email on Saturday mornings, I don’t work on weekends.
What is your favorite thing about being an editor?
I love helping new authors hack away the underbrush, so to speak, so their unique writing voice becomes clearer and more powerful.
What is your biggest challenge in being an editor, and how do you work through this?
Marketing is a huge challenge for me. But I believe it is a skill that I can learn, and so I’m working on it! Louise Harnby’s materials on marketing for editors have been a huge help.
What are you currently working on?
Right now, I’m wrapping up a book on how to be a great dad (even if you didn’t have one). It’s well-written and full of excellent biblical counsel. Next up, I’ll be copyediting a novel. I’m excited to have the chance to put my new fiction editing skills to work!
What advice do you have for someone who is just starting their career as an editor?
Get connected with a professional organization (like the PEN) ASAP. You don’t know what you don’t know, but the training and support offered by such an organization will help you find out!
Where can people find you on social media?
Robin is passionate about helping independent authors strengthen and amplify their original writing voice by removing obstacles such as grammar and punctuation problems, lack of clarity, and weak structure. She is committed to helping authors publish their work with the highest possible quality. When she’s not at her desk, she can often be found on a hiking trail or the local ballroom dance floor.
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