THE EDITOR’S EYE is not a book about editing. It’s a book about hiring an editor. It’s good to know some basics before hiring an editor, such as how to find a good one or what the different kinds of editors are. However, a full-length (188 pages) book about this topic is too much. THE EDITOR’S EYE could have been half this length and still more than covered its topic.
For example, Ennis includes a long anecdote about teaching in the Dominican Republic where internet was spotty. She then talks about her clients in Washington, Idaho, and New Hampshire. All this to finally state that manuscripts are edited electronically and distance doesn’t matter. The whole book reads like this, with the reader forced to wade through too much extraneous information to find the point.
When Ennis does get to the point, she has great ideas and advice. She discusses the different levels of editing (developmental, content, copyediting, and proofreading). It’s crucial to know the difference between each kind and what’s needed at each stage of the editing process. Ennis also teaches writers how to find and hire the best editor for them. Once an editor is hired, Ennis has good advice about how to work with the editor by listening to her suggestions without being intimidated.
Outside feedback is crucial for any author and the best place to get that feedback is from an insightful editor. Knowing how to work with that editor is even more important. Ennis has a wealth of knowledge about this topic and is eager to tell you every last bit of it. Sadly, this book about editing could have used an editor itself.
rating: 3 stars
pie slices: 8 slices craft
This book is best for: intermediate writers
I recommend this book or Self-Editing for Fiction Writers by Renni Browne and Dave King