It all started when my grandfather, best-selling author E.B. Garside, sat me down near his desk at the newspaper he managed and had me pick out spelling errors - I was fourteen years old. By the time I was in college, I made money typing other students' papers and dissertations after first correcting the written copy - I charged $1.00 per page. I had my own by-line in my college newspaper, as well as in a small newspaper in the small Mississippi town we lived in at the time.
I have worked as a copy editor for a graphic design house, been a letter writer for more than one boss, and even wrote a training manual for a company I was employed with for over a decade.
When arthritis in my neck made it impossible to work as an accounting clerk any longer, I took some time off and re-evaluated. A friend made the decision for me got me an interview for a Language Arts teaching position at a local middle school. For the next five years I taught 7th and 8th graders how to write and edited countless essays, paragraphs, and research papers. Unfortunately, arthritis reared its ugly head and I had to give that up as well.
Eighteen months later, my computer died and I bought my very first Kindle - a 7" Kindle Fire and my world changed. I discovered indie authors and joined my first street team. I wrote a scathing review of a book because it was so poorly edited. The author sent me a message and we discussed the details. At the end of the conversation, she asked how much I would charge to help her. I was flummoxed. I'd been marking up books as a beta reader and never once considered ever digging in and really editing a book.
Sixty three books later, my business and reputation are growing. I'm proud of my work, but will continue to expand my knowledge of the industry.
"Editing should be, especially in the case of old writers, a counseling rather than a collaborating task. The tendency of the writer-editor to collaborate is natural, but he should say to himself, 'How can I help this writer to say it better in his own style?' and avoid 'How can I show him how I would write it, if it were my piece?'"~ James Thurber