“The Copy Editor’s Lament”

I found a video called “The Copy Editor’s Lament” on YouTube today. It’s aimed at the newspaper industry (fiction copyeditors don’t go about killing adjectives :-)), but the lyrics are pretty amusing. Freelancers can’t be laid off, obviously, but publishers are finding ways to cut back on copyediting costs regardless. I read a wonderful post in support of copyeditors–and lamenting their current scarcity–on medical writer Debra Gordon’s blog today, too. I particularly liked this bit:

I always know the client I’m working with is a true professional when she has a copy editor standing by for my copy. The ones that scare me are the ones who expect me to copyedit my own writing. I’m a writer, I tell them, not a copy editor. The two are about as similar as a five-star restaurant and a fast-food drive through window. I can edit the copy for hours. . . but that’s not copyediting.

With that in mind, here’s the video I mentioned:

The poor copyeditor should have spelled “support” correctly, though. ;-)

2 thoughts on ““The Copy Editor’s Lament””

  1. While a copyeditor certainly has the advantage of a different point of view and honed skills, if a writer’s own editing ability is equivalent to fast food when compared with a copyeditor’s, that’s a manuscript I never want to read. Ever.

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