Getting Into the Editing Mindset

When I learned that today’s class was primarily focused on editing and proofreading, I automatically got into the mindset of my best friend Morissa Young. This may seem odd, but Morissa is an English major and tutor, grammar nazi (as she likes to be called), and my personal editor. Whenever I have an important paper to write, I have her give it a final look for grammar errors, odd phrasing, or areas that don’t make sense. When I had the chance to look over Ginu’s alien article, I channeled my inner Morissa to give her the best feedback possible for the assignment. I found that the article’s biggest weakness was the lack of personality. It reiterated what she learned in her interview and stated it. Once I recieved my article, I realized I too had just stated the things I wrote down from my interview with Anna. By editing my classmate’s article, I had a better understanding of how I should improve my own.

I started my editing process by rereading my entire article to pinpoint the problem areas. Carley edited my article and did a great job finding the spots that were boring and wordy, so I changed those areas right away by adding more action rather than stating what happened. For example, when explaining Anna’s greatest life lesson, I previously wrote: “Over this past summer, she worked at a place called Camp Grovefest where she was pushed out of her comfort zone everyday.” I couldn’t believe how wordy and long that sentence was so I changed it saying “She learned this lesson last summer working at a place called Camp Grovefest.” I also took out the boring, unnecessary information about Anna’s jobs. I previously wrote every detail about her jobs like the exact person she babysat or nannied for. It wasn’t until I reread it that I noticed no one cares about that information and it needed to be cut. One of the biggest changes I made to the piece was to add more personality. As I stated earlier, my original piece just restated what Anna told me in a boring way. When editing, I tried to add in more of Anna’s personality and express her feelings through the actions taking place. In the original paragraph, when Anna was talking about her experience at Camp Grovefest, I stated the things she did like rock climbing, but I never connected it to her lesson. In the revised article, I wrote, “At camp, she was pushed her out of her comfort zone everyday by doing activites like zip-lining, white water rafting, and rock climbing.” This sentence directly connects with her life lesson and shows action.

By paying attention to the areas in my writing that I was bored, confused, or annoyed, I significantly improved this article. I learned that getting a fresh set of eyes on your work, as well as rereading your own work can help you to pinpoint the weaknesses in your writing. Overall, this was a great learning experiene and I was glad to have the chance to rework my old article.

Below is the newest version of my article:

https://medium.com/@annahhorst/intergalactic-interview-with-anna-8224119c1528#.wk79tb3au

I took a picture of a random bike in central mall and found this awesome filter and I’m in love with this picture!

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