Editing Goes Global 2015: Conference Highlights

an_octopus_drinking_tea_by_pseudooctopus-d4rnemeOkay, so things have been a bit crazy for yours truly lately. I had hoped to have this post up last week, but I couldn’t find a way to add any more hours to my days. Nor could I get my body to grow six more arms on command. Anyway, I’m here now, excited to tell you all about Editing Goes Global. Continue reading

Nervous, Excited and Enthusiastic

happy_monster_by_pseudooctopus-d4rnfylAs some of you may have heard, the first international editors’ conference, Editing Goes Global, will be taking place in Toronto from June 12-14. Some of you may also know that I will be speaking at the conference. I will be co-presenting a session called “Introduction to Networking: It’s Not as Scary as You Think” with fellow blogger and EAC member, Sue Archer. (If you haven’t already, you should really check out Sue’s blog, Doorway Between Worlds.) Continue reading

Editors’ Conference 2014: Review and Recap

Toronto sunset skyline with CN Tower

Have you ever felt completely exhausted and totally energized at the same time? I just returned from the 2014 Editors’ Association of Canada conference in Toronto and that is exactly how I feel. For a bunch of introverts and bookworms, we sure know how to throw a party!

This year, many of the conference sessions talked about the changing face of publishing and the editor’s role in that. I attended eight different sessions—and would have attended more if I’d figured out how to be in two places at once! Over two jam-packed days, I learned about coding EPUBS, the nitty gritty of the self-publishing world, social media tools for writers and editors, the evolving role of blogs in publishing, and much more. I’m looking forward to applying some of my new knowledge in the weeks to come—including converting my Grammar Ghoul Guide to e-book format.

In addition to all the sessions, we were treated to two fabulous keynote speakers. The first was Douglas Gibson, a seasoned editor and publisher who eventually became a writer as well. He talked about his most recent book, Stories About Storytellers, in which he shares stories about the incredible writers he worked with over his long career, including Robertson Davies, Margaret Atwood, Alistair MacLeod,W.O. Mitchell, and Alice Munro, who won the Nobel Prize for Literature last year.

The second speaker was Terry Fallis, who is an inspiration to me and ought to be an inspiration to any writer who chooses to self-publish. He talked about how his self-published debut novel, Best Laid Plans, ended up winning the Stephen Leacock Medal for Humour in 2008. His story not only demonstrates that good writing can come in any package, but it also shows us that the underdog can come out on top, just as long as that underdog is determined, confident, and talented. If you like humour with a political bent, you should check out his books.

Along with all the information that is now stuffed into my brain, I also got to meet and reconnect with a wonderful bunch of editors from across the country. This includes fellow editor and blogger, the lovely and talented Sue Archer of Doorway Between Worlds, who I first met here in the blogosphere. What a treat it was to meet you in person, Sue!

While I was sad to say goodbye to all my friends, I left Toronto feeling excited about the work I do and the evolving publishing world that I belong to. I can’t wait until next year’s conference, which is also evolving. Next year, we will have the honour of hosting editing colleagues from all over the world. So, if you’re an editor who enjoys learning, networking, and hanging out with some fantastic people—we would love to see you in Toronto next year!

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Image credit: Elenathewise @ PhotoXpress.com

Editor in Her Element

Flag of Nova Scotia

As some of you may know, when I’m not participating in creative writing challenges, I support myself as a professional writer and editor. Well, this past weekend I attended the Editors’ Association of Canada’s annual conference, held this year at the Lord Nelson hotel in the lovely city of Halifax, Nova Scotia. In fact, I am hanging out in Halifax for a few more days. And as I am without my all my reference books, I thought I would offer an overview of the conference in lieu of my more traditional Monday grammar post.

The first thing I have to say is that Haligonians are some of the nicest people you will ever meet. Actually, scratch that. Nova Scotians in general are fabulous people. If you ever get a chance to visit this province, you won’t be disappointed. The restaurants and brew pubs alone make it worth the trip!

Okay, so let’s talk about the conference. There was such a diverse selection of sessions to attend that sometimes I had to flip a coin to decide where I was going next. I attended a panel on the use of social media in the publishing industry, a workshop on writing regional dialogue (featuring the charming and talented Lesley Crewe), a session on making the most of meetings (which was way more interesting than it sounds — no really!), a session on building a good working relationship between an editor and a memoirist, a panel on the perils and rewards of being a regional publisher, and a feisty panel on political writing. I learned something from each session that I plan on carrying with me into all my future work, both professional and recreational. My only complaint was wishing some of the sessions could have gone longer.

In between the sessions on Sunday, one of our members, James Harbeck, conducted “word tastings,” in which he had us sample some different words and then discussed similarities and differences, echoes (words that the word in question makes you think of), etymology, collocations (words that “go” with the word in question), and more. If you’re like me and that sort of thing makes you so excited people look at you funny, you should check out James’ blog Sesquiotica. (In fact, I think his most recent post talks about the origins of Haligonian.)

On top of all that, we had two wonderful keynote speakers. The first was Robert MacNeil, who you may know from the MacNeil/Lehrer Report, or from one of his novels. He is something of a Canadian icon and he also happens to be a fantastic speaker. The second speaker was Donna Morrissey, a Canadian author with a wicked stage presence and a great deal of depth. I am eagerly looking forward to reading her latest book The Deception of Livvy Higgs.

But finally, and most importantly, the highlight of the weekend was by far all the wonderful people I got to meet. If you don’t know any editors, you might be surprised to find out how much fun they are to hang out with. I’m proud to find myself in such great company — and I am already looking forward to next year’s conference.

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Image credit: Lulla / Photoxpress.com