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The Artful Edit: On the Practice of Editing Yourself


The Artful Edit: On the Practice of Editing Yourself Cover

ISBN13: 9780393332179
ISBN10: 0393332179
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Publisher Comments:

explores the many-faceted and often misunderstood--or simply overlooked--art of editing. The book brims with examples, quotes, and case studies, including an illuminating discussion of Max Perkins's editorial collaboration with F. Scott Fitzgerald on . Susan Bell, a veteran book editor, also offers strategic tips and exercises for self-editing and a series of remarkable interviews, taking us into the studios of successful authors such as Michael Ondaatje and Ann Patchett to learn from their various approaches to revision. Much more than a manual, inspires readers to think about both the discipline and the creativity of editing and how it can enhance their work. In the computer age of lightning-quick composition, this book reminds readers that editing is not simply a spell-check. A vigorous investigation into the history and meaning of the edit, this book, like , is a must-have companion for every writer.


"Bell's prose is elegant and wonderfully readable in this artful guide."--

About the Author

Susan Bell has edited fiction and nonfiction professionally, including at Random House and Conjunctions magazine, for almost twenty years. She lives in New York City and teaches at The New School and Tin House Writers Workshop.

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Pixel, September 13, 2011 (view all comments by Pixel)
A valuable resource for the writer who wants to learn to edit her own work. Bell goes through techniques for creating distance from your manuscript so that you can see it with fresh eyes and explains what to look for when editing, including checklists and exercises. She explores the role of the editor in creating art by interviewing non-print artists to find out how editing has improved their work and closes with a discussion of some famous and influential editors and the positive and negative effects they had on the authors they worked with. The chapters on how to edit benefit from examples from early drafts of The Great Gatsby and excerpts from the correspondence between F. Scott Fitzgerald and his editor, Max Perkins. Bell doesn't hammer on this message, but clearly, since not every writer gets weeks of Max Perkins's time, it's vital that writers learn to be their own editors as much as possible.
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Product Details

Bell, Susan
W. W. Norton & Company
Editing & Proofreading
Writing Skills
Publication Date:
Grade Level:
8 x 5 in

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Reference » Editing
Reference » Writing » General

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Product details 240 pages W. W. Norton & Company - English 9780393332179 Reviews:
"Synopsis" by , "Bell's prose is elegant and wonderfully readable in this artful guide."--
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