Hey there! Maurice here, founder and editor-in-chief of Revision Path. I put together this page of editor guidelines to help you get up to speed with our editing process, as well as some other important information.
The overall tone for the blog is professional yet friendly — sort of like a cool professor or mentor that’s looking out for your best interests, but also not sparing you any pleasantries. No super business-y language, but nothing too informal either. We’re especially interested in stories from across the African diaspora (the Caribbean, South America, Africa, Europe, etc.).
To sum it all up, the kind of content that best represents Revision Path should be thoughtful and well-written — suitable for an educated, tech-savvy, global audience of creative people.
We use Slack to communicate with each other — it’s quick and easy and a great way to keep in touch with what’s happening at an instant. Once you’ve provided your email address, I will invite you to the #newsroom channel in our private Slack team, The Collective. You will use Slack for all communication through the editing process, including talking to me and other writers (as available), reviewing and commenting on pitches, and communication about deadlines and editing status on articles.
How to Spot a Good Pitch
All articles start with a pitch. Sometimes, I will assign writers a pitch, but you are also welcome to assign pitches to writers.
Pitches should talk about why a topic is important to the Revision Path audience. They should tell a story or give a unique viewpoint. As an editor, use your discernment towards what pitches would make good articles. When in doubt, feel free to run it by me. Pitches should be submitted in the #newsroom channel.
Our Editing Process
A good editor is able to work with a writer to put the work first. Communication is key to the editing process — many writers for Revision Path may have not worked with an editor before, so it’s important that the editing process is both supportive and educational for the writer. They are looking to you to help elevate their work (and so am I)!
- For headlines, remember search engine optimization (SEO) and work with the writer to create a headline that is catchy, sums up your article, and will make people want to read it or share it. If you need help, check out this post from Buffer. I may re-write your title before publishing.
- Ensure that any declarative statements made by the author are supported by evidence where necessary (direct quotes, statistics, hyperlinks, etc.). If you don’t see it, ask the writer to provide it.
- Please proofread. The goal is for writers to provide clean, error-free copy, but the editing process involves…well…editing. Check spelling, grammar, and tone. Point out inconsistencies and guide the writer through clearing them up. The goal here is not to re-write the article for them; your goal is to give the author what they need to fix the errors themselves so their voice shines through.
- Make sure that your feedback is both positive and professional. Yes, you can be brutally honest, but don’t be mean. Be prepared to defend your changes if the writer asks, and walk them through your thought process so they understand.
WordPress is great for managing content, but not so much when it comes to editing. We use Google Docs for editing. Here’s the process:
- The entire editing process should take place in Google Docs. You and the writer are working from the same document.
- The writer should share the Google Docs link for the article with you in #newsroom; ensure that they have the correct sharing settings in their document.
- When you pull up the article in Google Docs, go to the top right of the page and change the editing mode from “Editing” to “Suggesting”. Doing this will allow your changes to be shown as revisions, and these are visible as tracked changes to both you and the writer.
- Once you’re in Suggesting mode, you can add words, change fonts, delete paragraphs, and leave comments. Your changes will be highlighted, and a revision box will pop up next to them showing the date and time you made these changes and what specific changes were made. The writer can leave notes on these changes for more information as well.
- Once you are finished with your edits, just let the writer know in #newsroom. Changes in Suggesting mode are made in real time, so when the writer pulls up the document, all your changes and comments are there.
You will probably go through this process with the writer two or three times until the piece is ready for publication. Once it’s ready, let the writer know and they will add the post to the site through WordPress. (Feel free to run it by me as well, but I’ll see the article once it’s added to the site through WordPress.)
And that’s it! Once the post has been submitted to WordPress, I will add and/or edit any images, make edits to the tags, categories and/or title, add new key art for promoting the article, and notify you via Slack on when your article will publish.
Congratulations! You’ve helped to add something awesome to Revision Path and now it’s up on the Web for everyone to see. Let’s get you paid.
Current editors are paid 25 USD per hour.
Invoices are due by the last Friday of the calendar month. On your invoice, include the title of the article that you’ve written. You will only be paid for posts which have been published.
Please send your invoice to firstname.lastname@example.org and include the word “Invoice” in the subject line of your email.
Please make out your invoice to the following address:
835 Oglethorpe Ave SW #407
Atlanta, GA 30310
All invoices will be paid within 30 days of receipt. (This is not negotiable.)
If you have any questions about these editor guidelines, send me an email.