CAREER DEVELOPMENT / SEP. 01, 2014
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10 Ways to Endear Yourself to Your Editor (and Boost Your Freelance Career Prospects)

Your editor is often the overlooked party in the careers of freelancers. We see them as the irritants who moan about where this word goes and where that comma should be. Yes, they can be annoying, but you can gain a lot from creating this relationship. In this article, we’re going to go through some of the ways you can endear yourself to your editor and boost your freelancing career prospects.

1. Keep them Updated

Keep them updated on what you’re doing. This can make sure you’re on the right track and you aren’t potentially creating a conflict of interest. Remember, your editor will have a set of people they will or won’t have anything to do with. Keep them in the loop to show you care about what they think.

2. Add Value

Add value to yourself as a writer and as a client by providing any supplemental information. If you have something the editor may need to consider, send them something to supplement their work. Don’t wait for them to find it and then ask questions.

3. Edit Yourself

Further make your editor’s job easier by reading your work one last time. Remove all those redundant phrases, repeated expressions, and grammar mistakes. By turning in the cleanest piece of work you possibly can, you make the editor’s job easier.

4. Be Willing to Defer

So you’ve got a nasty message from a client?

Let the editor see the message. Defer to their authority and ask for their opinion. Let their authority take over and have them explain themselves. Don’t try to take on everything yourself.

5. Learn from Your Mistakes

Make progress as a writer by really taking on-board what your editor has said to you. Don’t make the same mistakes over and over or they’ll feel like they’re wasting their breath. Write down the most critical points for next time, and remember to actually incorporate them.

6. Know Your Editor’s Schedule

 Find out what your editor will be doing in the next few months. If you find they’re working on something you know something about, tell them. It could well save them lots of time trying to find suitable candidates to take on their next project.

7. Refer a Friend

Not able to complete the assignment for your editor? No problem, defer to another writer who will know the topic. You’ll gain more in karma through helping someone else out than you will trying to struggle on with something you know next to nothing about.

8. Encroaching on the Word Count

Try to stay away from encroaching upon the word count. You were asked to submit something that was 500 words. If this is the case, never go over 550 words. Use the 10% rule on all assignments. If you can’t stop it, tell your editor that you need more words. Don’t just throw them something that goes way over the word count. It only makes their life difficult.

9. Hanging Editors

If your editor sends you a message, get back to them as quickly as you can. Nothing infuriates and editor more than a writer who leaves them hanging. They’re on deadlines themselves and they can’t afford to wait around for you to reply.

10. Fact Checking

It’s your duty as the writer to check any facts you include. All editors understand that they have to perform some fact checking to confirm certain aspects of an article. What they shouldn’t have to do is check the whole thing. This all ties into not giving editors extra work. Make sure you check everything twice before submitting to your editor.

Make the most of these tips to ensure you have a mutually beneficial relationship with your editor and take your freelance career prospects to the next level!

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