Immersion Editing vs. Surface Editing

I’m thrilled to report that the Going Deeper class on February 24 was a smashing success. By immersing ourselves in immersion editing, we uncovered what the mantra of “going deeper” really means. For starters, “going deeper” begs the question, “Deeper than . . . what?”

The short answer is, immersion editing goes deeper than surface editing.

For the long answer, let’s imagine we’re on an ocean excursion to check out a coral reef forty feet below the surface.

When the boat comes to a stop above the reef, many people roll up their pant cuffs, dangle their legs over the edge, and dip their toes into the water.

dipping toes in water

Maybe they look down every now and then, squinting and trying to peer through the blindly bright sun bouncing off the surface. Honestly, they can’t see a thing. They have no clue whether a reef is even down there. They might as well be back on land.

Meanwhile, a few other people eagerly don scuba gear and flip into the water. They are properly trained and properly equipped to dive deep and explore the reef up close and in-depth. They see firsthand that it’s teeming with exotic marine life. When they eventually reemerge, they’re bursting with incredible details about being in this amazing underwater world. Just from the way they talk and the expressions on their faces, you can tell it was a meaningful, transformative experience.

As the scuba divers rave on and on, you can’t help but look over at those who never left the boat. The whole point of this excursion was to explore the reef. So why didn’t they dive in too? Do they not know how to scuba dive? Or do they know how to scuba dive, yet they choose not to? If so . . . why not? It’s hard not to draw some bleak conclusions about their motives.

Now let’s translate this little allegory into reality. As I’m sure you’ve already figured out, the coral reef represents a manuscript that needs editing. But what you might not realize is that it also represents the author behind the manuscript, the person who wants a positive connection with the editor, one built on trust.

The people with their toes in the water are surface editors. They barely engage themselves with manuscripts. They typically do the bare minimum—if that. They exert little to no energy on connecting with authors. I’ve seen surface editing’s effects on manuscripts and authors. It’s heartbreaking. And maddening.

As for the scuba divers, they are immersion editors. Immersion editing is my special approach because I know authors and manuscripts deserve much more.

Yep, you guessed it: immersion editing is about going deeper. I know that truly great editing can only be achieved if I immerse myself in the manuscript, truly understand it and its message. I also immerse myself in a relationship with the author because I know the entire edit is built on rapport and trust.

If you’re an author, what do you want for your manuscript? (And let’s be frank: for your time and money?) Which type of editor do you want to work with: someone who’s ready and able to dive down deep to discover the wonders below, or someone who barely breaks the surface and hardly gets wet? If immersion editing sounds like a fit for you, let’s chat about your project and your goals.

If you’re an editor, what do you want for your career? Do you want to just sit there with your toes skimming the surface, never knowing the amazing underwater world below? Or do you want to take the plunge and go deeper? If immersion editing sounds like a fit for you too, stay tuned, as I have more classes planned for the spring and summer. My goal is to train and equip more editors to dive in and go deeper.

Now, who’s ready to check out that reef?

Immersion Editing Class: February 24

So, are you ready to take the plunge? I’m proud to announce my next class—Going Deeper: An Immersion in Immersion Editing. In this one-day intensive, I’ll share the secrets of the immersion editing approach.

Going Deeper class title

Editors, come unlock your power to take your career and craft to real depths. Authors, don’t feel left out. This is a great chance to explore the other side of the editing experience and learn how to deepen your own critique skills.

Come join us too if you’re a project manager or designer or if you work with writers in virtually any way. Whatever your experience, this class will inspire and challenge you to go deeper. It’s a fun time, if I do say so myself.

We won’t talk about serial commas and who versus whom. Rather, we’ll discuss how immersion editing is like scuba diving and what it has in common with servant leadership, emotional intelligence, and even “whispering.”

If you are indeed ready to take the plunge—and I hope you are—then check out the Eventbrite listing for Going Deeper: An Immersion in Immersion Editing. Seats are limited, so sign up today.

I hope to see you there!

Welcome to Immersion Editing

Hello and welcome! Today I proudly launch out into the wild blue yonder of the internet.

Light through water

This momentous occasion has been a long time coming. I’ve never had a website before. Truth be told, outside of a simple LinkedIn page, I’ve had zero online presence until this moment. I know, I know—it’s 2018. It’s ridiculous that it’s taken me this long. (If you’ve seen my phone, though, you understand.)

So, however overdue this may be, I’m eager to share my website with you now. More importantly, I’m eager to share my vision of immersion editing.

We’ll explore immersion editing in blog posts to come, so stay tuned. In a nutshell, though, I can sum it up with the mantra-slash-tagline: Let’s go deeper.

You see, most editors skim the surface, dipping their toes into their work. For them, it’s about commas and typos and barely knowing their authors’ names. They’re in and out, and authors are left to slog through manuscripts full of track changes on their own.

But truly great editing can only be accomplished if you go deeper. Me, I immerse myself in the manuscript and in a relationship with the author. I dive down to reach a deeper understanding that helps both the manuscript and the author reach full potential. My goal is to make every editing project meaningful—meaningful edits, meaningful guidance, meaningful connection, meaningful results. This is the editing all authors and all books deserve.

If you’re one of my authors, you know firsthand what immersion editing is all about. You and your books are the proof in the pudding. The amazing, humbling testimonials speak louder than I ever could about this approach.

If you’re a new author lucky enough to have found your way to my site, I hope it piques your interest. Please drop me a line if you’d like to learn more about me, immersion editing, and how I can help you.

If you’re an editor yourself, I’d love to connect with you too. I offer classes on immersion editing and other topics, and I hope you can join me sometime. (Keep an eye on the blog posts for updates about the next class starting soon.)

So yes, is finally here at long last. All good things are worth waiting for, right? And no matter how long it took me to get online, I can’t express how excited I am to share this moment with you. Welcome to the immersion experience.

Let’s go deeper.