In continuation of our “Meet the Staff” series, one of our talented content editors, Wendy Strain, visited the blog today. She answered some great questions to help readers get to know her better.
Eden: Hi Wendy, tell us a little about yourself.
Wendy: I am a recent college graduate, having finally earned my Master’s degree (surprisingly in English) after raising three wonderful children. We live on a beach and I spend my days writing, either for myself or for clients, or playing in the waves.
Eden: You were a newspaper editor for many years. How does that experience contribute to your performance as a content editor?
Wendy: One of the things I learned at the newspaper was how to grab a reader’s attention from the first words of the story. I think that talent is as needed in writing books as it is in publishing a successful newspaper. Once the reader’s attention is engaged, it’s also important to keep it engaged while still telling the full story. At the same time I was learning some of these valuable storytelling truths, I was also learning how to work with other writers, helping them to improve their articles without taking over the story. Voice isn’t as important in newspaper articles as it is in novels, but integrity of the text plays a huge role and for me, that includes staying true to the author’s vision.
Eden: After your work with college composition classes, what is your philosophy of editing?
Wendy: Freshman students come into college full of doubt about their own writing abilities, even when they’re clearly very talented. Whether I am grading a student’s paper or editing an author’s manuscript, one of my top priorities is preserving the creator’s intent. My job is not to rewrite a text, but is instead to show authors areas that could use more polish, gaps in the story structure, suggest ways to keep character development consistent and above all, to provide their work with all the professional touches that will make them proud to show their finished, published novel to the world.
Eden: What drives you in your work?
Wendy: I’m passionately dedicated to the belief that it is through words that we make our dreams happen and I love to see just what can be created when we allow ourselves to play with ideas and share them with each other. I believe everyone has a story to tell and it is my desire to help them tell it.
Eden: Is there a particular piece of writing you’re especially proud of?
Wendy: There are several articles I’ve written that I am proud of particularly because of the impact they had on the community. One example is an article I wrote on our print day when I learned a local charity was about to close its doors. No one had been contributing to it during an economic downturn and they didn’t have the money to pay the bills due the following week. This organization focused on providing the basic needs for families with children and was in a situation where they couldn’t keep their own roof over their heads. The story I ‘stopped the presses’ for resulted in a flood of donations that enabled the center to stay open and started a grassroots effort to create a fund for its continued maintenance.
Eden: Do you have any writing goals of your own?
Wendy: I do. I have a few different series in mind that I would like to explore and a few more single novel ideas. Most of them are in the fantasy genre with some crossover into romance and historical fiction. I also have several more academic interests I’d like to pursue - after a significant break.
Eden: Thanks for stopping by the blog today. Is there anything you’d like readers to know before you go?
Wendy: I’m excited about the opportunities that digital technologies have given us and about the future of Entranced Publishing. We already have such a great team working together with no fears of giving each other honest feedback. Now I’m really looking forward to getting to know our writers and readers.
Fantastic answers! It was so great to have Wendy stop by the blog to share with us. I can’t wait to introduce more of our wonderful team.
Wendy Strain is a Content Editor for Entranced Publishing
Eden Plantz is Marketing Director and Managing Editor for Entranced Publishing