Three things Pat Holt would like to see (Part 3)

I’ve come late to this series of art­icles on the blog of Pat Holt, a US-based edit­or and pub­lish­ing-type per­son (her bio­graphy makes her some­what dif­fi­cult to define).

I think the sad­dest thing that ever happened in the book industry was the gradu­al devalu­ing of edit­ors and all they stand for – their high stand­ards, their belief in read­ers, their abil­ity to nur­ture authors, their love of lan­guage, their patience, their ded­ic­a­tion, their eye.

And most of all, their power.

This is a per­en­ni­al dis­cus­sion. Truthfully, I don’t know if stand­ards are fall­ing. (An inter­view in the Collected Paris Review with edit­or Robert Gottlieb sug­gests that, in the fifties, the industry was hark­ing back to yet an earli­er golden age.) I would cer­tainly present this sen­ti­ment — that editor’s aren’t what they used to be — as the obverse to one good thing about small pub­lish­ers: you’re more likely to get that per­son­al touch.

Holt Uncensored » Blog Archive » Three Things I’d Like to See #3

Author: Ian Hocking

Writer and psychologist.

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