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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To The Teacher Who Was So Much More

Thank you for everything
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I think it's fair to say that most people remember at least one teacher who had a lasting impact on them. I have been incredibly lucky to have several teachers who I will never forget, but one individual takes the cake. So here's to you: thank you for all you have done.

Thank you for teaching me lessons not just in the textbook.

Although you taught a great lecture, class was never just limited to the contents of the course. Debates and somewhat heated conversations would arise between classmates over politics and course material, and you always encouraged open discussion. You embraced the idea of always having an opinion, and always making it be heard, because why waste your voice? You taught me to fight for things I believed in, and to hold my ground in an argument. You taught me to always think of others before doing and speaking. You showed me the power of kindness. Thank you for all the important lessons that may not have been included in the curriculum.

Thank you for believing in me.

Especially in my senior year, you believed in me when other teachers didn't. You showed me just what I could accomplish with a positive and strong attitude. Your unwavering support kept me going, especially when I melted into a puddle of tears weekly in your office. You listened to my stupid complaints, understood my overwhelming stress-induced breakdowns, and told me it was going to be okay. Thank you for always being there for me.

Thank you for inspiring me.

You are the epitome of a role model. Not only are you intelligent and respected, but you have a heart of gold and emit beautiful light where ever you go. You showed me that service to others should not be looked at as a chore, but something to enjoy and find yourself in. And I have found myself in giving back to people, thanks to your spark. Thank you for showing me, and so many students, just how incredible one person can be.

Thank you for changing my life.

Without you, I truly would not be where I am today. As cliche as it sounds, you had such a remarkable impact on me and my outlook on life. Just about a year has passed since my graduation, and I'm grateful to still keep in touch. I hope you understand the impact you have made on me, and on so many other students. You are amazing, and I thank you for all you have done.

Cover Image Credit: Amy Aroune

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The Ups and Downs of Being a Double Major

Its more complicated than I thought it would be.

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Before starting university, I was in love with the idea of graduating with a double major. What an opportunity, I thought, to be able to do two degrees in four years. Why would anyone not graduate with a double major?

Although I still believe in all of these things, I would say that my relationship with my double majors is over its honeymoon phase. As I write this, there is exactly one week before I have to pick the classes for the second semester of my sophomore year, and I am freaking out. Possibly due to me changing one of my intended majors at the end of my freshman year, or simply due to the heavy amount of credits and pre-requisites that need to be completed for two majors, I think that enrollment day is much more stressful for double majors.

Doing a double major in four years takes a lot of organization and thinking ahead, and these things are especially hard for a teenager starting college. Something that is necessary for planning ahead, is knowing what you want. Even though this sounds simple in theory, it is hard to imagine that a seventeen or eighteen-year-old coming into college is completely sure in which direction they want to take their career. I thought I was sure, and planned ahead and organized myself, but after my first year, I completely changed my mind. Teenagers and young adults probably change their minds so much because their personalities and interests are still changing and evolving, compared to adult minds, which although still experience some change and development, this happens at a much more slower rate.

The transition from adolescence to adulthood that happens around the age in which most people start university makes this process all the more complicated. There is a crazy difference in the amount of advising I had during high school compared to how much advice I get in college, as high school students are treated more like children that need guidance as opposed to college students being treated as independent adults. Although I think this independence is something positive, there is no denying that it comes with an abrupt change that takes some getting used to and adaptation. But with a double major, there isn't much time to adapt.

In addition to this, part of the experience of studying in a liberal arts college or university is being able to explore various areas of interest to you. I have found that with a double major, I have little space in my schedule for other classes that aren't fulfilling general requirements for the core curriculum (most of which are also requirements for my majors) or aren't major requirements. Although I get to explore two different areas in great depth as majors, I can't help but feel like I am missing out by not taking many classes in other departments.

Even though I have just written 500 words on the downsides of double majoring, I still stand with my decision to graduate with a double major. I believe each one of my majors opens up different doors for my professional future and this way I won't have to decide so early on in what area I want to work in or to stop pursuing some of my interests in great depth.

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