Editing is Perhaps the Most Important Tool Any Author Should Use- Guest Post From Author Susan Day

Being a writer is certainly hard work, and getting published is a daunting task as difficult as climbing any mountain. One issue writers face is the huge amount of competition. There are literally thousands of books published a day, and writers need to stand out to be noticed.

One of the keys to getting published and having your work appreciated is having it edited properly. This is easier said than done.

Editors often go through your work and pick it to pieces; that’s their job. It can be hurtful when your ideas and even your writing style is put under such scrutiny. However tough it feels, why writers need to have their work edited.

Why do Writers Need Help?

It is important that all writers learn to ask for help and act upon it at every step of the process. Our manuscripts and books are products of a great deal of energy and thought. They are our creations and are oh so special, and they mean the world to us.

The problem is that writing is a solitary occupation where we authors spend most of our time drawing ideas deep from a well of creativity. We do this on our own, hunched over keyboards while consuming vast amounts of coffee or tea. We aren’t used to someone looking over our shoulders and critiquing what we do.

Nonetheless, the truth is no writer produces the most perfect book from the first go. Writing is a skill that needs to be honed and shaped, regardless of how talented you are.

Readers want to get lost in your story, not have to stop and self-correct as they read.

Who should writers ask advice from?

You need someone who doesn’t have a vested interest in your feelings to teach you how to become a better writer. As well, you need that someone to tell you the truth without malice or prejudice. And, for that reason you should ask for help from people you trust. By this, I don’t mean people who are going to protect your feelings like your parents; people who are supposed to love everything you do.

Wisely Accepting Criticism

One of the best things I have done was to listen to others’ ideas on how I could improve.

After eight years of being a published author I still send a manuscript to just about anyone who is willing to critique it. That way it will be seen by a wide variety of different people. These range from experts who have made a career out of proof reading and editing, to other authors, to grandparents who are in my niche market.

Whoever is reading my manuscript gets told the same thing. I beg them to look for spelling mistakes, grammatical errors, lulls in the plot or things that just don’t make sense. I’m not looking for a pat on the back.

What I need to know is how to make my book great before it hits the shelf. After all, there is nothing worse than receiving an email that lists all your errors. I would rather know what I need to do to improve it before it was published rather than afterwards.

Those writers who ask for help and listen to criticisms, are those who are going to make their dreams of becoming a published author a reality sooner rather than later. Their work will be accepted and respected, and they’ll soon become a favorite, much loved author.

About Susan Day

SUSAN DAY AUTHORSusan Day is a passionate author, blogger, and grandmother. She wants to empower all parents and grandparents to build meaningful relationships with their grandchildren. Her first non-fiction book was written to explore changes in grand-parenting, and teaches the reader how to create their own Grand-parenting Philosophy. Discover the Top 10 Things Happy Grandparents Never Regret Doing here.



  1. Thanks for sharing the article! I absolutely agree. I used to think I could write and edit my own works…and then I started getting feedback from beta readers. They’d note particular grammar errors, and I could still read the sentence with the error and still miss it, even after they’d isolated the spot.

    By the way, you might be interested in our Writers Club. We network with publishing professionals to help authors find the services they need, and free editing is one of our member perks. https://ryanlanz.com/writers-club/

    • You’re very welcome and thank you for dropping by! And I will certainly check out your Writer’s Club 🙂

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