Well reader, I can tell you this. There's a good chance that once I get started talking about anything I have an opinion about, I will probably go off on many tangents. I'll try to always pull it back together, but just be forewarned: I have LOTS of thoughts. Just for future reference.
I was most definitely the book worm, nerdy child growing up. If I wasn't doing schoolwork or chores (okay, so even when I was suppose to be doing both of those things), my nose was in a book. To this day I can remember the stories that I loved the most at ages 5, 8, 10, 12... I remember my dad not believing I had really read a whole novel in a day so he would ask me to tell him about what I had just read. I would get so caught up explaining all the details of the book because I felt like the entire story was just so fabulous that I didn't want to leave anything out that he would have to stop me so he could go on about his day. Stories are the way I remember things best. Reading a book is equivalent to watching a movie, in my mind. In fact, it's even better because you're able to analyze every expression, every emotion and thought, every scenario and possibility... Oh, I just can't say enough about how fantastic books are and how much I love them. Sadly, I don't get a chance to read very much nowadays with a husband in his last semester of grad school, two kids under two, and my own full-time course-load to finish my undergrad. However, when I pick up an old favorite like Jane Eyre, Harry Potter, Great Expectations, or even my toddler's Goodnight Moon, I feel my mind absorbing the text as if it was starving for nourishment.
Even though I may not read novels as much as I use to, I still try to get in as much reading as I can in a day through research. I love to look up random questions that pop into my head to learn how something works or why it works. My husband always looks at me funny when I spout off the most random bits of knowledge, but I love it (and secretly he does, too). There's just so much to learn in this world! My degree is in Technical Writing, but I'm seriously considering eventually going to school for degrees in nursing, music, psychology, and marine biology. My interests are all over the place, and I feel like I'm never satisfied with what I know. This isn't to say I'm extremely intelligent, as I know there are people out there who learn quicker and better than I do, but I still have the active mind and desire to satisfy my curiosity.
So connecting this all back to editing... Because of my passion for reading throughout my childhood, I have an above average understanding of the English language. When you read as much as I do/did, you can't help but pick up on the rhythm and reason of a language. There's just an "ear" that you develop to go along with your eye that tells you what does and doesn't sound right. I've had to work harder than most to understand the logistics as to why something is actually wrong, since people don't believe me when I say, "because it's just wrong!" But I'm confidant in my editing ability. It's one of the few natural talents I admit to.
Writing ability has kind of been a natural consequence of reading and understanding literature. I can crank out 2000 words with the best of them, and I've always gotten high praise for my writing ability. However, I don't feel like writing is my angle in life. I can be creative, but I'm MUCH better at helping someone who's really creative improve their work, whether it be through designing, writing, brainstorming... I absolutely love taking what other people come up with and polishing it off. It's a weird passion to other people, but I truly do find joy in editing.
I remember one day in high school I had an awful morning. I came into my first period class fighting back tears and was very short with everyone, including my teacher. Luckily, my first period class was my high school's newspaper, and I had been designated as THE copy editor for every article since I had shown my ability. It was a small class of about 10 kids, so it was a pretty intimate setting. This was the second year I had been on the paper, meaning it was the second year I had been with this teacher. So, he asked me what was wrong and I just couldn't go into details with him. Instead, I asked him for somebody's article to edit so I could cool off. About two minutes into editing this person's writing (I wish I could remember what it was, but it was pretty bad, which was just what I needed) I felt this huge bubble of happiness push all of the anger away. I remember thinking at that moment, "I really love editing. This is what I want to do. I'm oddly happy when I do this, and I love it!" That was my junior year of high school, and now I'm about to graduate with a degree that's going to allow me to do what I discovered I loved 6 years ago.
So that's my schpeel on editing. It's what I think of it as well as what I can do with it.
I'm full of opinions and ideas, so this blog really won't have a theme. I promise I won't just be writing about editing, because that would be boring! Not to mention I would run out of things to write about after MAYBE two posts. And that's pushing it. I'll keep the topics pretty mellow, though I will definitely still make them interesting! Or else there'd be no point, really. I'm just not going to jump into politics or anything like that on here.
Interesting tidbit for the day: A study was done where they asked students if, when they graduated, they would look for a job based on offered salary or based on interest. A few years down the road, they found that the ones who had planned to and had taken a job based on money ended up making less money than those who had accepted lower paying jobs that were what they wanted to do. The conclusion to this study was that choosing a career that you love will motivate you and allow you to achieve success more quickly than those who search for jobs based solely on monetary gain. So do what you love! And that will be the topic of my next post. It may not be what you think, though!