Jodie: Derinda....are you eating?? Did you just pull that meat pie out of you pocket?
Derinda: Yes and it is not a meat pie...it's a hamburger Jodie....LOL
Jodie: But you had it in your pocket ewwwwwww
Derinda: I didn't want to eat it during our interview with a famous Editor, so I brought a snack. Where was I going to keep it hidden?
Jodie: Well, at least wipe the mayo off your mouth, gosh! Derinda, do you think she edited our questions?
Derinda: Of course she did, I've never seen our questions look so great and proper hahahahaha
Derinda: Come on in Melissa!
Jodie: Can I offer you a drink?
Melissa: No, thank you...
Derinda: Thank you Melissa for joining us, could you tell us a little about yourself?
Melissa: I am the mother of two children, owner/editor of There for You Editing Services, and Vice President of Anchor Group Publishing. I was also recently inducted into the National Association of Professional Women.
Jodie: What or whoooo ummmm...
Melissa stands up....
Derinda: Ummm Melissa we weren't finish, are you leaving?
Melissa: Oh no, I am just plugging in my scentsy, now what was your question Jodie?
Jodie: uummm oh yes, What or who inspired you to become an Editor?
Melissa: I have always loved to read, from as far back as I could remember, but I can't write to save my life. I briefly tried to be a photojournalist, but when you can't write it's slightly harder! I can't say one particular thing inspired me to become an editor, but I can truly say I love it.
Derinda: Do you feel having an Editor is value to an Author? If so why?
Melissa: I feel like having an editor is very valuable to an author, not only because we know what to look for, but also because it's a fresh set of eyes. Most people don't fix their own car or cure themselves of disease, so why not use an editor who is trained to look for certain problems, offer advice, or help to make your work shine?
Derinda: Recently I ask through a post on YATR, if anyone had any questions for you. Would you mind responding to their questions?
Melissa: I would love too, but first can you tell me something?
Melissa: Do you like my new hair cut?
Jodie: *Sqeeeek* I love it....so freakin cute
Derinda: I adore the color!!!
Derinda: Ok so here we go
Lisa Morgan, the Author of Maggie Henning and the Realm Series would like to know: What's the most common error you have come across?
Melissa: The most common error I have come across is the correct usage of punctuation/capitalization in character speak. For example, most people will commonly write: "Please don't leave me." He begged. The correct version is actually: "Please don't leave me," he begged.
Christina Silcox PA for R.K Ryals asks: How do you feel when you have an editing "nightmare" on your hands? I know that's what you are being paid to do, but do you ever worry that you will upset the author by changing too much?
Melissa: I worry all the time I will upset the author, even when it's a "clean" manuscript. The author has poured their blood, sweat, and tears into the MS, so you never know how they'll accept the corrected version. I try to forewarn them, and explain it really does happen to almost everyone.
Jodie: psssst Derinda, do you think she will share some of that fruit she is cooking over there in that cooker thingy?
Derinda: *snickers* Jodie, that is not a cooker. It's a scentsy burner to make your house smell good.
Jodie: WOW its smells so good I could eat it!
Zed Whisper Writer/Blogger/Reader: What strange thing have you learnt that's in common with most writers?
Melissa: No matter how many time a writer reads, and rereads, their MS, they will miss something. This is not their fault, but simply the fact that the brain will make you see what's not there to make it easier. For example, small segue way words, such as it, was, there, his, the brain will fill in for you.
Teebs Malik: What's the best way to edit yourself?
Melissa: The best way to edit yourself is to (a) step away from your work for a few days, then revisit it (b) print out the MS and reread (c) know your common errors, such as there vs their, and write the correct version on a piece of paper, and leave it by your computer to remind yourself as you write (d) use beta readers, someone with a strong opinion, not just a friend who will rave about how good it was.
Katherine Pegg Eccleston an aspiring Editor: What advice would you give someone who wants to start working as an editor?
Melissa: Train with a current editor, beta read frequently, take as many online courses as you can, invest in the Chicago Manual Style of Editing book to refer to.
Jessi Badrick: How does one balance dialogue and description?
Melissa: That is a little more difficult, as everyone has a different style of writing. You should never have too much of either, so as you edit yourself try to "separate" yourself, paying strict attention to your dialogue vs. description.
Derinda: Can you list some of the Authors in which you have edited?
Melissa: Elizabeth Marx, Stacey Rourke, Dawn Gray, Amy Richie, Lucian Barnes, Elise Marion. I edited close to 100 books in 2012. On the There for You facebook page there are covers for most of the books on display.
Jodie: What is one thing most, you would love for the world to know about you?
Melissa: I really enjoy making a book "shine" and be the best it can be. I am ecstatic when I have a repeat client, or if an author contacts me to rave about a good review they received, which stated how well edited the book was.
Jodie and Derinda: (bobbles our heads in awe!!) Thank you so much for joining us today Melissa. You are one inspiring person to us.
Melissa: Thank you very much for having me. If anyone would like to get in touch with me, you can find me at the these links.
There For you Editing
There For you Melissa