Behind every multi-award-winning author is a much-appreciated editor. This post is especially for my writer/poet friends who may be looking for an editor.Well here’s mine–Krista Hill!
Name: Krista Hill
1. How long have you provided your editorial service? I have been in publishing for over a decade and started L Talbott Editorial in 2015.
2. What do you find to be the most challenging as an editor? The most rewarding? Being an editor in the present-day, Kindle self-publishing world is more like being a writing teacher. (Forget the fact that authors expect you to be their agent and marketer as well, sometimes). In the past, if an author had a contract with a traditional publisher, the editors involved already knew they had someone with talent. These days, if you edit privately, you get everybody. That’s a challenge. Some people are born writers, others find their talent gradually—and others…well…you have to be able to set reasonable expectations for them. This last category is largely populated by people who never read, but want to write. I’m especially astonished by people who want to write a novel but they’ve never read any fiction—ever! I mean, that’s like saying “I want to be a ballerina, but I’ve never seen a ballet.” How would you know? I don’t mince words with these would-be scribes: if you don’t read, you can’t write. Period. They will tell me, “Oh, well, I don’t want to ‘copy’ anyone else’s work.” Bull. Look at the back cover of Cormac McCarthy’s Blood Meridian: the Pulitzer-prize winning author is sitting in his den that is surrounded by built-in shelves crammed with books. No doubt he’s read every one. As for the rest of my clients, they are usually talented people who need to be nurtured and learn the true craft of writing as they apply their own style. I try to let them stretch their legs without trying to over-do it. Like Yoda, when he first meets Luke Skywalker and talks him off his “hotshot” cloud. You can have the “force” when it comes to writing, but you have to learn control.
The most rewarding thing is a writer sending me a copy of their first book and another manuscript shortly after. Mission accomplished. (Those mentions on Acknowledgments pages don’t hurt, either).
3. Do you have a favorite genre to edit? I love editing historical fiction, as I write it. I’m also an historian and a genealogist. I had a fabulous time delving into Peni Jo Renner’s works: one of my favorite eras to study in American Colonial history.
4. You’re also a writer yourself. What have you written or what are you currently working on? To date, I have published one children’s book with a co-author. I have a novel that, after spending much time on a ghostwriting project the past year, I hope to complete this fall.
5. What’s your best advice for writers suffering writers’ block? Write, write, my pretties! Then, see me: I’ll send your commas back to Oxford and expose your expository before you flash the world, to your Amazon 2-star chagrin.