Why I Want To Be An Editor

Why I Want To Be An Editor

Words are beautiful.
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"Writing without revising is the literary equivalent of waltzing gaily out of the house in your underwear." Patricia Fuller

Editing is an important job.

I won’t bore you with my childhood dreams, as editing wasn't what inspired me then. It molds me, encourages me, and chooses me now. I loved language and writing when I was younger, but I never thought that I’d edit others’ words. Their words are everywhere and I eat them up. Food is made up of letters. Speech is spoken words and thinking is writing without paper. Communication is the key to numerous roadblocks. It allows us to learn, to relate, and to express. Words are in songs, in texts, in phone calls, and in books. Words are everywhere. I decided to embrace them, but not always as they came.

I got to college and the wonderful world of writing centers opened up to me. I could get money for helping with writing without a degree? Yes, I could. This is only a glimpse of what it’s going to be like in the professional world, right? Fine-tuning grammar, re-organizing papers, and writing in any form is perfection. I fell in love with the editing process and the people involved, especially when giant whiteboards were used. Writing is as messy as clay work, as time-consuming as punching numbers, and as tedious as budgeting. I wouldn’t have it any other way. Writing has so many avenues to explore and editing was just the path that chose me.

Editors make writing legible and ready for publication. While there are other departments that scrutinize almost-finished products, editors can talk with the authors, and they’re supposed to. They can talk writing for a living and they get to read manuscripts/articles/blogs/poems/any other type of prose imaginable. They even instruction manuals, but I’m not about that technical writing life.

I heard music in writers’ voices when I heard them gasp with the realization that there is an easier way to say: “a problem that simply cannot be overcome.” In fact, I began to think that nothing was insurmountable. I went to conferences for writing centers and talked enthusiastically for hours about how many new topics you learn when editing a senior thesis or a maid of honor speech. I learned about strange diseases, psychological studies that explain mob mentality, and how TV shows relate to social media. I’ve had interesting conversations with co-workers about how mentally draining our sessions can be and how frustrating others are who aren’t as invested in writing or talking as we are. As editors, we poke holes in everything. We analyze, we learn, we experience. We see other cultures. We absorb emotions. We have this wonderful opportunity to examine things, to name things, to create things, and to help things. We make language fit to others’ needs and that’s a beautiful gift.

Why do I want to be an editor, you ask?

It's because it just makes sense.

Cover Image Credit: Kristine Thornley

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A Typical Week In College As Told By The Grinch

You're a foul one, Mr. Grinch...
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When your alarm goes off for your first class of the week and you want no part of it.

No. No. NO. NO. NO. NOPE. NO WAY.


When you realize you have 3 exams, a quiz, a project and a meeting in the next 2 days and you get a liiiittle grumpy.

If this hasn't been you at least once since September, you're lying to yourself.


Planning out your day after class.

Priorities, am I right?


When the stress starts to get to you.

Because food is always there for you, ya know?


How your brain feels by mid-week.

College hurts.


When you've been trying to pretend that you don't have emotions in order for you to not have a psychotic meltdown but it happens anyway.

I'm just gonna leave this here.


When your roommate watches you cry and roll around on the floor like a toddler and asks if you wanna go get food.

Because Wings Over is the ultimate mood booster and soul-satisfaction.


When you're done with classes for the week and you think about the killer nap you're gonna take.


No better feeling.


When Friday finally arrives after a week of talking to no one besides your roommates and the questionable voices inside your head, and someone asks you what your plans are for the night.

Let's face it, going out is great, but so is sleeping.


After you've finally gotten out of bed and ready to go out, and you know you look hot as hell.

"Tell me how good my ass looks in this. Seriously."


But then you realize that you don't have shoes to match..

"Maybe I can go out barefoot...that's a thing, right?"


After you finally get your shit together, you call an Uber, and you and the squad show up to the party ready to make bad decisions.

Let's get weird.


When you find someone you haven't seen in forever at the same party as you and you get a little too excited.

"Oh my God, you're just like, the best. Have I ever told you that? Ugh, I LOVE YOOOOU!"


When you wake up the next morning and you and your roommate talk about all of the crazy shit that went down last night.

Hair and make up still on point, because you were way too lazy to deal with that.


And most importantly, when you've been an absolute bitch all week, but your friends still love you anyway <3

Love you humans, couldn't do it without ya!

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Education Is More Than What You Learn In The Classroom

You're so much more than your grades.

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We have a huge tendency in Western society to completely judge our self-worth based on our grades. As a sophomore in college, I can tell you that I definitely feel the pressure to maintain a perfect GPA and get As on every test. And while rationally, I know that one B wouldn't be the end of the world, I, like most college students, am conditioned to feel like I am inferior if my grades aren't in a certain percentile. Our learning is measured on a scale from 0-100%, which totally negates the majority of learning.

The most important things we learn aren't in the classroom.

That's right. For all our colleges' advertising and marketing slogans about how they are preparing students for the real world, they forget the most important part: we learn to be who we will become for the rest of our lives by making our own space and coming into our identity due to the world around us, not the tiny microcosm that is our classroom.

Invaluable experiences like travel, trying new things, "adulting," laughing and even reading books are much more educational than we would ever realize.

I've often complained that my high school and college don't offer classes on how to do your taxes, or do laundry or how to change a tire. But what I've realized is just because it isn't offered in the conventional atmosphere doesn't mean it isn't important to learn and doesn't mean I can't learn it on my own.

Teaching yourself is just as important as being taught.

Taking charge of your own education is something that advisors and parents often preach, but not necessarily in the way I mean. I'm not talking about getting yourself a tutor or going to supplemental help, I'm talking about learning the things you want to learn, regardless of whether you can take it in a classroom.

Like the main character in my absolute favorite movie, "Good Will Hunting," says, "You wasted $150,000 on an education you coulda got for $1.50 in late fees at the public library." While this is definitely an exaggeration and a college degree is by no means a waste of money, he does have a point. If you rely on professors and powerpoint presentations to provide your entire learning experience, you'll seriously miss out.

Studying every day isn't the way to learn.

So if it comes down to an extra hour of hitting the books or having those spontaneous life experiences and college adventures, always pick the adventure! In the end, you won't remember every single exam you took and what percentage you got, you'll remember the road trips, the nights you spent wheezing with laughter and the time spent making friends who will last a lifetime.

The stories you tell your kids and grandkids are more of an education than hours spent in a lecture hall. If you become the best and most educated person you can be of your own efforts, your grades will follow. And even more importantly, you'll realize that the little letters and numbers on a transcript don't mean much after all.

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