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Editor Interviews

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Read all the editors' answers to Duotrope's interview question: How much do you edit an accepted piece prior to publication? Learn more.

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Here is a small sampling from our recent Editor Interviews. We have interviewed over 1,550 editors.

Q: How much do you edit an accepted piece prior to publication?

A: Not much. We hardly touch poetry--only obvious errors. Essays, however, might get a few suggestions. We won't accept a piece if we think it has obvious flaws.

A: We will have an occasional edit suggestion, and because its his/her poem, its always up to the author to approve.

Christine Jones, editor-in-chief, founder of poems2go, 14 April 2018

A: We don't tend to edit poetry very much. More poets work with editors or do peer swaps before sending in work, I think. Prose tends to at least receive copy editing. If we think a piece could be made stronger, we'll let you know. We only ever want to publish the best version of your work.

Sarah Clark, Managing Editor of Anomaly, 07 April 2018

A: When we receive a submission, we remove any personal info in the document such as the writer's name and address. We do no other edits beyond this. When we send feedback, if the piece was not accepted for publication, we hope that the writer will choose to honor our feedback and submit their revised work.

A: When necessary, we suggest edits and confer with the writer. We want them to be proud of and happy with their work. And sometimes a dynamic piece that isn’t working yet goes back to the author with our feedback and an offer to rewrite.

A: We will sometimes suggest revisions but always ask the author's approval.

A: I don't edit or change their work except where obvious misspellings occur. I format it the way they send it, that part takes a lot of work, as it is all done manually. But changes to their work is never made beyond obvious oversights.

A: Each book goes through three phases: developmental, substantive/line, and copy editing. They are given full attention by our editorial staff, and we work closely with authors to make sure the edits remain true to the author's vision as much as possible. The only portion of the editing authors are not included in is the copy editing because that is the final polish before typesetting and is focused on crunchy bits like whether or not the quotation marks are facing the right way and scrutinizing commas.

A: It depends. We will take work the way it is submitted, but we will also suggest substantive edits, too. During layout, we try to be diligent proofreaders and copy editors--diligent but delicate.

A: This really depends on the submission. There is no formula, as every work is created differently.

Miah Jeffra, Editor-in-Chief of Foglifter, 20 March 2018

A: I almost never suggest edits to poems (maybe one out of one hundred poems received). When I do, the suggestions are usually for grammatical errors. I email the poet with editorial suggestions, and if the poet responds positively, the poem will be published. If not, I give the poem a pass.

A: See above, but again, this really depends on the state of the submitted draft.

Carissa Halston, Editor-in-Chief of apt, 19 March 2018