Working with a Developmental Editor - podcast

Before working with or hiring a developmental editor, watch this interview to learn what to expect. Senior editor Beena Kamlani describes what it's like working with a developmental editor. While the editor may lead the process initially, it is a team effort between the editor and author. It's a delicate relationship. The editor cannot force the author to change something, but must convince them of the large scale changes that will strengthen the book. It takes an author with an open mind to create the most successful book. Kamlani has been in the publishing industry for many years. She is a senior editor with Viking Penguin and also teaches a course called “Self-editing for Writers” at Hunter College in New York City.
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  • I think that, from an author's point of view, that developmental editors must also be aware of the following: First tell the author what is good about his/her book before starting with suggestions of what can change. The author will then be more open to these suggestions. Then tell the author not to respond immediately, but to first reflect on the suggestions. Authors who are committed to their idea of the book, as you rightfully say, may not be open to other ideas and may try and defend their ideas. Conclude your report with something positive. Some authors are very sensitive people and any 'negative' feedback may be detrimental to them.
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