Do you need a Writer or an Editor?

Teaching you the difference between a writer and editor with three scenarios. Both are similar but not the same.

Many people can’t recognize the difference between a writer and an editor. After all, a writer and editor can be found in the same person. How do you know which person you need? 

Let’s play a game. I’ll give you a few scenarios based on my experience. You guess who is needed. Then I’ll tell you the best answer and the differences between a writer and an editor. 

Scenario #1

You own a successful restaurant. After expanding outside of your town, you decide to create social media posts for advertising. On the profile, you fill out contact information and the visiting hours. You have graphics prepared and concepts to go with them, but you are unsure of the next step. You also don’t have time to update the profile since you manage all other parts of your business. Do you need a writer or an editor?

If you guessed a writer, you are correct. A writer will utilize your post topics and gather their ideas to sell your product. They know how to write to engage an audience and how to use your profile statistics to drive sales. Suddenly, your profile receives more clicks than ever, and you can continue to develop all aspects of your growing business without losing any sleep.

Scenario #2

After your social media profiles take off, your next move is to build a website. Knowing your business better than anyone, you write pages on the history, locations, and menu. Well, you tried to. Some of the pages are complete, and others are halfway finished. You keep getting sidetracked by the inconsistencies in your writing and wonder if you are properly informing your reader. But you know your business better than anyone! You know you have all the information inside you to write pages for your website.

You need an editor--more specifically, a developmental editor. As an editor, I won’t write for you. You are capable of your own ideas. What I can do is check out what you’ve already written to help shape the direction of your writing. I’ll even pick out the commonalities and create a template. No longer do you need to worry about the direction of your writing. Just fill out the template, and it’s there. 

Scenario #3

Now your information is organized in a way that is uniform and relevant. You let your friend read it. They notice the work you’ve done, but your pages are hard to comprehend. However, if they read the pages out loud, they make a little more sense.

That’s right. You need an editor—this time a content editor. Content editors manage your style, flow, and syntax. By the time you receive your edited pages, your documents might look completely different. They aren’t! Your ideas remain the same. As a content editor, I still don’t contribute to your ideas. I adapt the language to best suit the written word. If the writing isn’t uniform in style, I’ll edit the documents to be formal or informal--not both. I’ll also rearrange your syntax to make them as clear as possible. If your documents are wordy, I’ll make them concise.

Scenario #4

Your business is booming. Your team is hard at work, but you notice that those hand-written procedures aren’t cutting it. You know you want everyone to be on the same page, and you have a few ideas, but you don’t know how to put them together.

You need a writer—this time a content writer. A content writer takes your ideas and puts them into a strong, readable format. The example above simply needs standard operating procedures (SOPs). I’ll work with you to gather your ideas, examples, pieces of paper, and other information to put together SOPs that you would review before sharing with your team.

A writer creates and connects ideas for the sake of communication. An editor is typically less passionate than the writer, which works in their favor. Their job is to prepare for publication through modification. Both roles rely on each other, and I’m available for both roles. 

Still not sure if you need a writer or an editor? Let’s connect to chat!

Categories: editing, writing