It’s never perfect the first time

As an editor, I would love to think that any text I have scoured will be perfect when I give it back to the author. Yet we all know that nothing is ever quite as perfect as we want it to be.  No matter how many times I review a text, I will always find something to fix.

How did I miss “Spend some time everyday reading this chapter”? Clearly, it should read, “Spend some time every day . . .”

I know that choose and chose are not the same, but I can so easily skip the missing “o.”

I wonder if our ability to miss the same thing twelve times has anything to do with this theory: raeding bteewen the lteters.

Sometimes, I even re-edit my own edits, deciding that they really did sound better before I got to them.

How many times do you review a work before you finally let it go? Do you ever have editor’s remorse (the feeling that you just set a work free that still had too many errors)?


2 thoughts on “It’s never perfect the first time

  1. I think that the ability to edit and perfect is one reason I love writing so much. When I work with students and their writing, I always encourage them to see editing as a huge part of the writing process, rather than some sort of finishing stage; “First get it written, then get it right.” Accordingly, I often feel that familiar dread–even in sending off an email without having read it through several times to make sure the nuanced exclamation points and emoticons perfectly express what I’m trying to communicate. I’m sure balance between “good enough” and “perfect” is best (and all we’ll ever really be able to achieve, I suppose), and I think learning to let go of perfection when it becomes an obstacle is probably (definitely) something I need to work on. Yet, that idea that something CAN be perfect is still exciting somehow. 🙂

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