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Old 03-03-2018, 10:31 AM   #1
Steve Colle
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Editor: A Highly Misunderstood Position

I have Tourette syndrome. Through much of what I write and research about it, it's stated to be a "highly misunderstood condition"...which it is. In starting this thread, I realized that editing - especially editing in the comic industry - is just as misunderstood.

Creators, readers, and even publishers have difficulty figuring out what editors actually do, something that can - as an editor myself - be the biggest stress of the role. How do editors show their worth to the creative community and the end reader when their duties range from basic to detailed, creative to administrative, and everything in between?

Here's something I told a colleague recently:

“I would say the biggest problem with comic editing in particular is CREDIT. What I mean by this is I've seen credit given and have even received credit for anything ranging from proofreading to substantive editing to production management, but it all falls under the title of EDITOR.

Plotters create plot; Scripters write the script; Writers write the whole; Pencillers create the line work and Inkers ink it, unless you have someone doing Layouts and Finishes separately; and so on. They receive credit for their distinctive role. The titles identify themselves.

Editors are lumped into one title with so many duties that no one person can say "You do this." Even with the division of Editor-in-Chief, Executive Editor, Group Editor, Editor, Associate Editor, and Assistant Editor, no one publisher identifies the exact same duties under those roles, so if they can't clearly distinguish, how can creators or worse, the readers?"


Having spoken to a number of creators, such as Amy Chu, Ryan Ferrier, Ray Fawkes, and many others, all have shared that depending on which publisher you are working with, the editor may have a strong involvement in the creative process, may just proofread the material before print, or may simply hire creative teams and manage the schedule. I have had one creator state that their "editor", though credited, had no involvement whatsoever.

Besides the single title covering more than one clear part of the position, editing is the invisible art form, so how does anyone qualify their worth and influence when what they do isn’t seen by anyone other than those they actually work with? And speaking of this “invisible” nature of editing: it sure as hell gets noticed when there’s someone to blame, whether it’s poor spelling, missing or added words in text, inaccurate or unresearched information*, inconsistent aspects of the artwork (including colors), and too many others to mention.

*Editor's note: Writer Christopher Priest recently wrote a piece of dialogue in an issue of Deathstroke where a career admiral referred to Slade Wilson as “Colonel Slade”.

Here’s a statement from an editor colleague:

“Part of why I've been considering stepping down (for the better part of a year) is because I've had misunderstandings with not one but two of the larger, local indie publishing companies--both who basically assumed I was just proofreading when in fact I was gutting and rebuilding a story from the ground up. There's more to it, of course, but in both scenarios I felt I was treated poorly, and very unprofessionally. I was certainly an "add-on" and not necessary for their process.”


I personally had a discussion with Raffaele Ienco about how to credit what I did after I edited the dialogue, text, and balloon placement in issues 4 and 5 of his EPIC KILL series (published through Image). We agreed it wasn’t a full edit of the work as I wasn’t involved from the start, didn’t edit his script or visuals, and only came on for this particular role. We agreed that he would write “Special thanks to Steve Colle” under his own credit in those two issues. What angered me was a good friend of mine, Yannick Morin, was brought on for the exact same duties and was credited as “Editor”, even though he felt he didn’t have any influence in what he provided. To end this direction, I have no hard feelings towards Raff, as the problem lies in how to credit what is actually being done by the “editor”.

The following is an article by writer Chase Magnett entitled “Why No Eisner Award for Best Editor?” (May 9, 2017 on comicbook.com):

“The Eisner Award nominees for 2017 were announced last week and, oh boy, were there a lot of them.

The Eisners have expanded throughout their history and covered a lot of valuable ground in doing so. Comics are a diverse medium and it’s great that their most prominent award show offers audiences from all backgrounds a look at that diversity. They cover the wide array of artistic contributions as well as the many different formats and audiences comics focus on.

The Value of an Award

Before we consider why comics editors deserve their own award, it’s worth pondering why we have awards in the first place. Awards are human systems and therefore imperfect. They can’t really tell us what the best comic, film, or television show of a year is. Art is subjective and the metrics we use to determine what is best vary wildly even among critics and experts. That doesn’t make awards meaningless though.

When an awards ceremony carefully crafts a process to select nominees and winners, they can point to a very high level of quality. While there will always be disputes as to who or what really deserved an award, there’s a general consensus regarding the craft and skill among those nominated. In addition to entertainment and argument fodder, awards offer a starting point for audiences to discover the best of what a medium has to offer. The Eisners may not be perfect, but they help comics readers understand what’s happening in the medium each year: where they should catch up and what might be worth checking out.

The Value of an Editor

Some readers might question what the role of a comics editor is and how it can be recognized. That’s an excellent question and a difficult one because depending on the publisher and creators involved, editors can perform radically different jobs. That doesn’t make them unimportant or impossible to recognize though.

Just consider the role of a comics colorist. To someone new to the medium (or art in general), recognizing the difference between a set of very talented colorists might not come easily. Colorists offer a style, but to the untrained eye it can be difficult to connect that style to a specific eye. Yet it is there and the impact it has on the reading experiencing is incredible. Editors have an impact as well, and it also requires attention and experience to recognize.

It is typically easiest to spot an editor’s impact across their entire line of comics. What they do to influence a single title may be impossible, but when you look at half a dozen comics across a year, trends begin to emerge. Pushes for more diverse content, creators increasing the quality of their storytelling, and better contributions from all individuals involved can be seen in a single editor’s lineup.

That value varies based on where they work as well. At publishers like Marvel and DC Comics, editors act like shepherds, guiding established properties towards new horizons and possibilities. For creator-owned projects, an editor might be focused on keeping the enterprise on the rails without the restrictions of a more formalized structure. In either case, they’re incredibly important to the final product, and these are merely two possibilities in a long continuum of this single, significant role.

There’s a reason that Marvel Comics popularized its bullpen in its first few years of publishing superhero comics though. They recognized the important collaborative nature of comics and how leadership could have an incredible downstream effect. While artists like Jack Kirby and Steve Ditko were inventing the superheroes who would become the most popular heroes of today, editors like Stan Lee, Roy Thomas, and Jim Shooter would shape what was possible for those artists. They determined what would and would not be published and influenced the final product, for better or worse. Editors have been an integral part of American comics as long as superheroes have, and they deserve some recognition as well.

Who Deserves the First Eisner

So if awards do matter and editors deserve to be recognized for their creative work on comics, then who should be nominated for “Best Comics Editor”? It’s too late for 2017, but we have a few thoughts on who would have made excellent nominees. While these suggestions are far from comprehensive, they help to display the incredible work editors put into the medium and why they ought to be recognized.

Mark Doyle’s recent promotion to head both Vertigo and Young Animal is probably award enough, but his hard work transforming the Batman line into a standard for quality at DC Comics deserves something more. After taking over the brand, Doyle helped to usher in a series of critically acclaimed stories, innovative takes on classic characters, and successful new launches.

Sarah Gaydos’ work at IDW Publishing has made her a favorite name amongst journalists and creators in comics. She has worked tirelessly on a wide array of comics, treating both licensed comics and original creations with immense respect. There’s a consistent quality among everything with Gaydos name on it, and comics is lucky to have her.

Sebastian Girner is the editor to look at when you’re looking at Image Comics’ new revolution. He is associated with some of the most groundbreaking and fascinating titles to come from the publisher, including Southern Bastards and Deadly Class. As Image Comics pushes the boundaries of the mainstream forward, editors like Girner are key in supporting that continued success.

Spike Trotman is a true innovator as a comics editor. She has revolutionized how comics use crowdfunding and established her own publishing model for queer comics away from publishers who shied away from the content. Her success in supporting so many creators and offering a line of comics that are both immensely entertaining and necessary ought to be recognized as widely as possible.

These names are but a few that would need to be discussed by the Eisner nominating committee. Just considering these talented individuals is enough to make it obvious that editors deserve recognition for their contributions. Knowing what these folks put into the entertainment we love is why we hope they’ll be honored with their own category at the Eisner Awards very soon.”


I start this thread with two purposes:

1) To show that editing covers so many aspects of a necessary process that it is hard to define everything they do or focus on specific duties in the whirlwind of editorial tasks, and
2) To show how hard it is for editors to qualify themselves when what is assumed isn’t the actual.

Just like plotters, scripters, layout artists, finishers, and so many others have specific credited titles, this is something the comic industry should likewise extend to editors: for the sake of showing what each role entails and to make identifying an editor’s qualities easier for those who may hire them.

Thoughts?
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Old 03-03-2018, 01:36 PM   #2
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I don't have the requisite professional experience and exposure to comment on whether or not editors are undervalued, but on a purely logical note, if editing does cover "anything ranging from proofreading to substantive editing to production management", how would it be possible for a position like that to be quantified for evaluation as an award category? The only people who would be able to credibly speak of an editor's worth would be the creative team and the publisher, not the readers.

To use an example off-the-top-of-my-head, if I pick up a recent title like, say, The Defenders, I can concretely see (and assess) how good the writing and dialogue is, how good the art is, the coloring is, etc etc. But there's no way for me to tell how good the editing is - could be the editor just makes superficial changes, especially for creators as established as Bendis, Marquez and Ponsor. It could also be that the editor does a lot more; and maybe it was the editor who came up with the idea for that doubling-in-size panel layouts for the awesome Iron Fist vs. Elektra Natchios duel scene in issue #7, in which case the contribution is much more important to the style and content of the book. There's really no way for readers (and by extension, any Award Committee) to know this for sure.

Along the same vein, there is no Academy Award (or any other film award) for "Best Producer" - even though, just like comic book editors, many producers make very substantial contributions to the movies they work on. And just like editors, it is impossible for Audiences and Award Committees to know how good or how bad the producer is based on watching the movie, even though a producer's influence can be felt across the movies they work in, just like you said about comic book editors.

The only way to gauge how good the editor is would be to take the word of the creative/production teams, which does not seem like a good way to evaluate someone for an award.

I'm not, in any way, suggesting that editors don't do enough for the comics they oversee, my point is that it would be difficult for an award committee to assess this for every individual editor.
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Old 03-03-2018, 02:37 PM   #3
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From my P.O.V, the Editor for comics books is the MANAGER of the project. From beginning to end.
Which is not proofreading.
I don't know how the Editor for prose books works. But I don't know if these have similar functions.
We shouldn't forget that for comics they use fancy names or switching names for defining activities.
For movies and TV the name should be Executive Producer which is different of Producer's functions.

That not only happen for comics.
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Old 03-04-2018, 02:45 PM   #4
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I think the issue here is that the position of editor was conceived more as an administrative position than anything else, this means as with much administrative work the job description quickly becomes 'whatever needs doing' now a days at larger companies editors usually have assistant editors to do things like proof reading, but the job of the editor is still often quite varied perhaps in some ways even more so than in the old days. Big giant multinational corporation makes overarching decree that unknowingly requires massive reworking of a book with no extra pay, the editor has to make this happen and hopefully not piss off the creatives too much for something he/she had nothing to do with. That said the red flag for me comes when editorial departments decide that they are the driving creative force behind the books. This has happened widely a few times and it's always proven to be a bad thing. I think the best way for an editor to act is as a facilitator, make sure the creatives have what they need to make a great book, help wherever necessary but if the editor needs to rework everything from the ground up you really probably need a new creative team (laughs)
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Old 03-04-2018, 02:59 PM   #5
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Editing comics (and even editing prose and other written word material) is a two-sided coin:

One side has it as the invisible art form that is meant to highlight the project and, in turn, its contributors. An editor's work isn't supposed to be seen, but rather behind-the-scenes.

On the flip side, this lack of visibility makes it hard - save for those who notice trends in the work an editor has been involved with - to identify what they do and how well they do it.

When major publishers hire editors from other companies or forms of media, they see a track record of what they have accomplished, who they have worked with and the relationships they have developed, and so forth.

For example, if you have an eye for detail and the ability to convey it effectively to the creators involved that will enhance the end product, that's one skill that fits into one role.

If you have the ability to track and maintain a production schedule along with all of the associated pieces (ensuring each creative step is completed in its specified time frame to move onto the next, getting the files to the printer in time, etc.), that's another talent.

If you are strong at identifying which creative styles would benefit each other, thus contracting the appropriate talent to the project, that's something else.

Not every editor can do all of these tasks because not every editor has these (and other) particular skills. That's why they are put into the roles they are and how they are recognized for the skills they have and develop. Climbing the corporate editorial ladder is proof of this and is identified through title changes like Assistant Editor to Editor to Group Editor and higher.

But what if you have a company structure where an editor-is-an-editor-is-an-editor, but still have mandates for specific tasks vs. global responsibilities associated with the title? I was told that Dynamite Entertainment's editors work on project management and scheduling and thus, don't have the time to be involved in the creative needs of quality control. Reading Amy Chu's work through Dynamite and comparing it to her work published through DC, I can see an obvious difference in the quality of the end product.

What about Image Comics? They don't assign editors to the product they publish, instead allowing the creators to involve their own in their processes. What an editor does for each project in this non-structure can either exist across creative and administrative boundaries or be one or the other. Likewise, an editor focussed on creative aspects could be involved from concept through every step including final proofreading prior to print or they could be involved only with editing the script; only with visual story pacing, hooks, and flow; only with guiding text placement; only with a final proofread; etc. The same applies to the individual tasks vs. general duties of the administrative process of creation, which exists within the project itself and don't extend to what Image itself does.

What about those small press companies where "editor" means they do everything down to nothing, but still have the credit beside their name?

What about creators who look to hire editors but don't know exactly what skills they have or what they offer?

Editors are like baseball players: catching the mistakes, pitching the talents of the creators and the projects that come across their desks, running the bases to ensure the end product reaches home plate, hitting a home run to see your team at the top of the rankings, and much more.

That's why The Comic Book Editors have talent for every role, because not everyone can play every position. And just like The Editors, it helps to know what each editor actually does.

Today's rant.
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Old 03-04-2018, 03:02 PM   #6
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Quote:
Originally Posted by noahgrahamart View Post
I think the issue here is that the position of editor was conceived more as an administrative position than anything else, this means as with much administrative work the job description quickly becomes 'whatever needs doing' now a days at larger companies editors usually have assistant editors to do things like proof reading, but the job of the editor is still often quite varied perhaps in some ways even more so than in the old days. Big giant multinational corporation makes overarching decree that unknowingly requires massive reworking of a book with no extra pay, the editor has to make this happen and hopefully not piss off the creatives too much for something he/she had nothing to do with. That said the red flag for me comes when editorial departments decide that they are the driving creative force behind the books. This has happened widely a few times and it's always proven to be a bad thing. I think the best way for an editor to act is as a facilitator, make sure the creatives have what they need to make a great book, help wherever necessary but if the editor needs to rework everything from the ground up you really probably need a new creative team (laughs)
Here's a list of definitions of editorial roles from Editors Canada which, although general, covers much more than project management to help identify there's much more to it.

http://www.editors.ca/hire/definitions-editorial-skills
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Old 03-04-2018, 03:56 PM   #7
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When talking about editorial control, though, realize that larger companies with corporate and/or licenced properties aren’t purely editorial in their direction and control, though the creative friction and frustration exists on that first line, like having a supervisor giving direction that upper management determines. Sometimes the editor is simply the messenger of what the publisher, directors of marketing, sales, advertising, finance, etc., and the editor-in-chief agree upon. Where things get hairiest is when the editor doesn’t effectively convey a message or takes it upon themselves to determine direction, to the point of creators quitting due to “ creative differences”. Not everyone is good at their jobs, which includes administrators and even creators themselves (of which I am both from my POV).
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Old 03-05-2018, 02:14 PM   #8
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This post has a few directions to it that will hopefully explain editing in general and comic editing in particular a bit better...

I'd like to address a bit of a misconception about editing that has, unfortunately, shown how many have changed their perspectives and, subsequently, how publishers have changed their focus.

To begin, this comment from noahgrahamart is a great example of how editors seem to be viewed now:

"I think the issue here is that the position of editor was conceived more as an administrative position than anything else...".

I'd like to agree with you, but that isn't the case. This seems to be similar to Scribbly's POV, who sees it as "the Editor for comics books is the MANAGER of the project. From beginning to end. Which is not proofreading."

Editing has always been creatively based in its purpose, whether you do it yourself, hire someone to assist, or are having work published through a publishing house (in the case of comics, for example). BusinessDictionary.com defines editing as follows:

Arranging, revising, and preparing a written, audio, or video material for final production, usually by a party (called an editor) other than the creator of the material. The objectives of editing include (1) detection and removal of factual, grammatical, and typographical errors, (2) clarification of obscure passages, (3) elimination of parts not suitable for the targeted audience, and (4) proper sequencing to achieve a smooth, unbroken flow of narrative.

In any dictionary-style reference material you find on editing, you will notice it talks about management, supervision, and the like as a secondary duty. Likewise, I haven't found a reference book or material online on the how-to's of editing that focusses on the administrative aspects of the role.

To use an excerpt from Lee Nordling's book, COMICS CREATOR PREP (a great resource, by the way), he writes: In 2006, during a program at Comic-con International, a panel of editors unanimously agreed: a good editor helps creators fulfill a specific vision, whether it's the creator's, editor's, or publisher's vision. Notice administration and management aren't the primary directives.

However, here is a link to a fantastic article entitled "The Lost Art of Editing" which explains why the perspective of administration exists over creation in publishing and, obviously, in the eyes of those who have already posted in this thread: https://www.theguardian.com/books/20...oks-publishing.

Many veteran comic creators and editors, such as Jim Shooter and Martin Pasko, have shared their beliefs that editing has become less about quality and more about the almighty dollar. Where Martin Pasko learned from famed editors such as Dennis O'Neil and Julius Schwartz, today's crop of corporate editors are more in line with the trend that extends across the world of publishing. Fewer editors with more titles under their watch make for a reinforcement of the editor-as-manager belief.

The question remains: If so many editors are involved in the process at publishers such as Marvel and DC, why are so many mistakes and misdirections happening?

In Deathstroke (vol.4) #21, a career admiral refers to Slade Wilson as "Colonel Slade". (https://www.bleedingcool.com/2017/07...-expectations/ to see the page)

In Marvel's GENERATIONS: THE AMERICAS, Sam Wilson is asked (Page Two, Panel 2) "Would like me to repeat the question, sir?" by a government agent.

In X-MEN GOLD #2 (before Ardian Syaf was fired by Marvel), Nightcrawler is seen with his fist at the base of Kitty Pryde's back as if having punched her, and yet the next panel has him firmly positioned two characters away. (Note: Anti-semetic point aside - German Nightcrawler and Jewish Pryde - the displacement makes no sense visually, even for a teleporter who wasn't teleporting.)

From the article in the above The Lost Art of Editing:

It's not a new debate. In 2005, Blake Morrison wrote a long essay on the subject in which he noted that, despite the inherent fuzziness of the line between facilitating a writer's work, with the occasional firmness and wing-clipping that entails, and the kind of over-editing that can result in a loss of authenticity and spontaneity, editing was vital to the business of writing and publishing. "When a book appears," he concluded, "the author must take the credit. But if editing disappears, as it seems to be doing, there'll be no books worth taking the credit for."

Amen.
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Old 03-06-2018, 01:35 AM   #9
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I don't know. A guy hire me. He tell me what he want me to do. He correct me and ask for adjustments. He gives me a deadline to get the job done and he pays me for doing what I do ( my artwork) to his/her satisfaction.
I call and regard him/her as my Project MANAGER. You and the "Industry" may call him Editor.
Helping, facilitating creators work? Well, he/her is the project coordinator. I get his/hers suggestions as orders. Do otherwise and see what happens or not happens afterwards.
As being called for their next project. Do what he/her want and they will be pleased to call you for their next project.

I work for a TV show. A guy select and assemble the movie shots altering order and timing or erasing scenes or shots for getting the best effect. I call him an Editor.

I work for a TV show. Or a movie. A guy hire the talent. Directors and crew members. Get sure every area works well and coordinated. I call him/her Executive Producer.

On comics books production from its inception, fancy names are used for disguise and embellishing work functions. Making it more appealing to creative talent. Less bossy. IMHO.
Examples from other kind of business:
Fast food: Supervisor= Shift Leader (nicer, less bossy)
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Old 03-06-2018, 03:17 AM   #10
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From jobs search:

Editor, Young Reader
DC Entertainment 6 reviews -
What part will you play?

DC Comics seeks an Editor, Young Reader for the Editorial – DC Comics department. Manages a line of editorial product within the DC Universe imprint.
Develops and performs content and line edits for Young Adult and Middle Grade titles.
Manages the creative process from conception through publication. Ensures that schedules and budgets are met, and product quality meets or exceeds DC s editorial standards. Seeks ways to keep ongoing series fresh and exciting.
Builds and maintains an extensive list of author and agent contacts in the YA and Middle Grade space.
Identifies and develops new editorial products for the DC Universe in the YA and Middle Grade arena.
Writes tip sheets, cover copy, catalog copy, and other relevant material, and ensures that Sales and Marketing have the required materials in advance of due dates for partners and distributors.
Ensures that all content is developmentally and thematically appropriate for the intended audiences.
Supervises and develops junior staff members.

What do we require from you?
BA/BS degree in English, Journalism, Publishing, or Art preferred.
6+ years editorial experience.
Young Adult and/or Middle Grade book publishing experience strongly preferred.
Ability to manage a creative team and meet or exceed deadlines required.
Knowledge of art (ability to discuss composition, design, etc.) required.
Developmental editing experience required.
Copyediting and proofreading skills required.
Knowledge of and contacts in the publishing industry strongly preferred.
Membership in or knowledge of Young Adult and kids organizations such as Society of Children's Book Writers and Illustrators preferred.
Mac/PC proficiency required.
Must be able to travel up to 5%.
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Old 03-06-2018, 09:41 AM   #11
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Thanks for posting this, Scribbly. It actually proves a couple of points:

In a corporate structure like DC, "editor" as a title unto itself (not assistant or associate) does entail the management and supervision of the team, process, and schedule of the product. It also shows how the term can be used to express that title at one end of the spectrum.

When I was Senior Editor for Comixtribe (for which Steven Forbes is still Editor-in-Chief), I wasn't responsible for scheduling, organizing creative teams, or ensuring the flow of processes: Publisher Tyler James was. Save for my work on SCAMthology, my responsibilities resided solely in ensuring the quality of each step: from the script to pencils to colours and lettering.

Here's a sample of edits I provided for The Red Ten #3 (wish I could post the visual, but that is less the point of this thread):

First, let's tackle Page 20. My main concern with regards to the mirror was that we would still have one unbroken so as to have the writing on it left by Oxy. That isn't happening with the current version. There are two mirrors on the right of the panel. The upper of the two would be perfect as an unbroken one so as to have the writing. As for consistency, here's an approach to the reader understanding Panel 2: CK is coming out of a drugged state. Who's to say the wonky effect isn't associated with that? There's nothing in the dialogue to say otherwise. I wouldn't be concerned with it. It works fine.

As for page 21, the only thing that I'm not agreeing with is the tilts for the last two panels, which make it look like they're swinging side to side. It especially doesn't work with the text of "I can't move" and "Be still!" You've got a longer shot with Panel 4, so close in with the last two shots being straight up and down. Here's where things can look differently: Turn their heads towards the camera instead of having the camera turn towards them. That way it looks like they are trying to look at each other. This'll also make the razor blade stand out more in her mouth. I'm assuming that it should also be faintly visible in the profile shot of Panel 4 as she must have gotten it out while he was still under, right? That's the only explanation for its existence and the only way to have it magically appear in Panel 6.


With my work with Adam Masterman on his Echo Callaway submission, I concentrated on clarity of story, as Adam is already an accomplished creator. This included working with him to introduce a scene at the beginning of his story that would start the ball rolling, as what he originally had didn't provide enough backstory to lead into the here and now, something exposition couldn't fulfill. Another smaller edit I did was ensure a cause and effect for when his female lead is smacked with a kendo stick. Originally she yelled "OW!" first and then the sound effect appeared below it. I also worked with Adam to find a font that would be most appropriate to his visuals and end reader. You can find Adam's Echo Callaway as a webcomic at https://tapas.io/episode/613972.

The point is that not every editor does the management aspect.

Finally, two things:

1) Can you find other job postings for editors and what is required, as I know DC has been used as an example a couple of times on DW?

2) Realize that film and television do have editors as well, so equating editors in print media to producers, which covers a separate role to editor in that medium, isn't an accurate comparison.

My two cents for today.
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Old 03-07-2018, 02:55 AM   #12
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1) Can you find other job postings for editors and what is required, as I know DC has been used as an example a couple of times on DW?
You can also find these jobs postings. These are posted very often on any of the official job search browsers online that are books or comics books related.
Type: comics books jobs, employment

https://www.google.com/search?q=comi...hrome&ie=UTF-8

Also, proofreaders only are usually called Copy Editor.( A non management function) Different job than Comics books Editor. I want to remark this.
For comics books, many famous comic's Editors did start as Editorial Intern, went to work as Comics book Editor Assistant, Comics books Editor and finally some of them become comics Writers.
The Eisner Award for Best Editor could be done by regarding which ones are the top comics titles of the year. IMHO.
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Old 03-08-2018, 10:49 AM   #13
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I'd like to address a couple of the points Scribbly brought up that further show a misunderstanding of editors in comics:

Scribbly, you wrote:

Also, proofreaders only are usually called Copy Editor.( A non management function) Different job than Comics books Editor. I want to remark this.

No, they aren't, as https://nybookeditors.com/2016/05/wh...-proofreading/ helps define the differences. This applies to comics as well.

You also wrote:

For comics books, many famous comic's Editors did start as Editorial Intern, went to work as Comics book Editor Assistant, Comics books Editor and finally some of them become comics Writers.

Though this is true in some cases, there are a large number of editors who don't become writers, but instead strive to climb the ladder to higher editorial roles. Karen Berger started as an assistant editor and eventually became Executive Editor of DC's VERTIGO imprint without ever changing to writing comics. Her new imprint of Berger Books at Dark Horse further shows her desire to stay in that direction.

There is a HUGE misconception that editors are wannabe writers. This extends outside of comics as well, but is a real issue within the industry.

I had asked a question in a previous thread from a couple of years ago asking what motivated the editors who were posting to do what they do. My own motivation is to see the creators I work with and the projects they work on to be the best they can possibly be while staying out of the spotlight myself.

Editing roles and titles aren't the same from industry to industry, company to company, or individual to individual. Company-driven vs. creative-driven editors exist throughout the comic industry. For example, freelance editors (many of whom were working for corporate or independent publishers previously) don't fall within the model established in this discussion.
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Old 03-08-2018, 01:25 PM   #14
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Originally Posted by Steve Colle View Post
I'd like to address a couple of the points Scribbly brought up that further show a misunderstanding of editors in comics:

Scribbly, you wrote:

Also, proofreaders only are usually called Copy Editor.( A non management function) Different job than Comics books Editor. I want to remark this.

No, they aren't, as https://nybookeditors.com/2016/05/wh...-proofreading/ helps define the differences. This applies to comics as well.

You also wrote:

For comics books, many famous comic's Editors did start as Editorial Intern, went to work as Comics book Editor Assistant, Comics books Editor and finally some of them become comics Writers.

Though this is true in some cases, there are a large number of editors who don't become writers, but instead strive to climb the ladder to higher editorial roles. Karen Berger started as an assistant editor and eventually became Executive Editor of DC's VERTIGO imprint without ever changing to writing comics. Her new imprint of Berger Books at Dark Horse further shows her desire to stay in that direction.

There is a HUGE misconception that editors are wannabe writers. This extends outside of comics as well, but is a real issue within the industry.

I had asked a question in a previous thread from a couple of years ago asking what motivated the editors who were posting to do what they do. My own motivation is to see the creators I work with and the projects they work on to be the best they can possibly be while staying out of the spotlight myself.

Editing roles and titles aren't the same from industry to industry, company to company, or individual to individual. Company-driven vs. creative-driven editors exist throughout the comic industry. For example, freelance editors (many of whom were working for corporate or independent publishers previously) don't fall within the model established in this discussion.

OK. So, WHAT IS FOR YOU a Comic's book Editor and why should them be awarded with the Eisner price that is regarded to comic's talent, the artistic crew?
Sorry, I'm asking this straight because I don't see what is your point. What I see is a mixing of apples w oranges.

On my opinion, a new Award for Comic's Editors should be created because they deserve. Such price should be delivered according to each Editor's hierarchy on the Editor's ladder.
A Julius Julius Schwartz or Stan Lee price would be proper for comics books Editors. IMHO.
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Old 03-08-2018, 02:09 PM   #15
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OK. So, WHAT IS FOR YOU a Comic's book Editor and why should them be awarded with the Eisner price that is regarded to comic's talent? The employees, not the employer.
Sorry, I'm asking this straight because I don't see what is your point.
My mistake was to even mention the awards, as they weren't the topic. Rather, they were to show that editors (whatever capacity they fulfill in comics) are hard to pin down in one title of EDITOR. "Editor" is so wide in comics because it covers everything from Submissions Editor to Editor-in-Chief in corporate structure; creative, administrative, or both in independent terms; and any number of duties in freelance form.

This is what makes it "highly misunderstood".

As creators who would consider hiring an editor, if they don't know what editors can do for them, they won't know what to ask for.

As readers who see poor storytelling or mistakes in the writing, art, etc. (what Marvel used to consider a "No Prize"), then they can't determine why it passed through. "Wasn't this edited?" or "What did the editor actually do?" are questions I hear during discussions at the comic shop every week. Or as SSTiger wrote:

To use an example off-the-top-of-my-head, if I pick up a recent title like, say, The Defenders, I can concretely see (and assess) how good the writing and dialogue is, how good the art is, the coloring is, etc etc. But there's no way for me to tell how good the editing is - could be the editor just makes superficial changes, especially for creators as established as Bendis, Marquez and Ponsor. It could also be that the editor does a lot more; and maybe it was the editor who came up with the idea for that doubling-in-size panel layouts for the awesome Iron Fist vs. Elektra Natchios duel scene in issue #7, in which case the contribution is much more important to the style and content of the book.

Proving value to something that is invisible or behind the scenes is damned hard for editors. Like I said before, it's easy to see where mistakes are made, but near impossible to show what has gone right without making the invisible visible, which kind of defeats the purpose of being hidden or behind the scenes in the first place.

This is also what makes it "highly misunderstood".

To close the whole awards talk, this is one of the reasons Best Editor was taken out. They only existed from 1992 to 1997.

Sorry this became the focus of a much larger topic. My fault.
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