On being an editor

It’s a good job, being an editor. Every day is different and every day is the same.

Most days I am editing copy, getting articles sent for review, commissioning authors, proof-reading, sorting out the plan for the next issues, checking headlines, pictures, captions and pictures credits. I attend meetings, deal with a mound of emails, make phone calls, and browse the web to keep up to date with the profession and the competition.

My job is to take responsibility for delivering journals that provide interesting, informative, accurate and up-to-date articles for our readers: journals that reflect their self-interests, while challenging them to be even better at what they do.

Some of the articles we receive need very little work, others require major rewrites by the author before they are massaged (and occasionally bludgeoned) into shape by our editorial team. Most authors are grateful about being published, others maybe not so much.

Most love the added value we give in making their prose sparkle, and the way we present their work in a professional format in a shiny magazine and on a readily accessible electronic database. Others are upset if we change a single word.

I think keeping authors and readers happy is the way to ensure the health and vitality of the journals. It’s a good job, but it‘s not always easy.

About the author

Colin Parish is editor of Learning Disability Practice and Mental Health Practice

Follow Colin on Twitter: @editorLDPandMHP