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Adrienne Montgomerie
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Just last month, I noticed a "polo bear" on a late-stage proof, after it had been approved by at least 4 sets of eyes, including my own. And yes, I'm sure it wasn't a new twist on an old sport; but that's a worthy query. Flubs seem to be more common when I've been line-editing the same material for months. It becomes so familiar that I can't see it clearly anymore. Repeated elements, especially complex or detailed ones such as a person's name, page footers, and URLs, start to "fuzz over." I couldn't possibly enumerate all of the things that someone on the team caught in the nick of time.
When I learned that there are other, correct ways to edit a single piece (not just my way), I felt a great sense of professional maturity. There are style guides and style sheets, to be sure, but editing is largely an art. There are many correct versions. The advice we give authors about taking their edits professionally goes double for editors. Carol's advice in this post is grand. And I 100% agree that it is very aggravating when inexperienced laymen are given more credit for their (editorial) opinion than is given to a seasoned professional. I'm somewhat relieved that even the best of us experience this second-guessing.
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Jul 26, 2012