Become A News Editor: What Is It To Become One? Find Out How!
If you have a creative mind, an eye for detail and a love of language, a career in editing might be right for you. There are different types of editors, from copy editors and book editors to managing editors, but they all have a few skills in common. Good editors have strong writing skills, and many start out as writers or reporters and may continue to write in their editing position. Editors also need good judgment to decide what stories should run, and sound leadership abilities to guide reporters, writers and junior editors in their work.
Editor's Job Description:
Editors often work for print publications, websites or a combination of both. Though the role of an editor will vary based on the company and what type of medium they work with, editors often develop content ideas and assign stories to writers. They also read content submissions, editing for spelling, punctuation and grammar. Editors must also verify facts and determine if a manuscript or article is ready for publication, then approve final versions. In a print publication, an editor might also work with an art director to decide on layouts and send the pages to press.
Editors must be skilled in multimedia, working with graphics, audio and video. They also need to be social-media-savvy to promote their publication or website.
Types of Editors:
Editors do not start at the top of the career ladder. Like other careers, an editor begins in a lower position and works their way up. A common starting point for an editor who does not start as a reporter is a copy editor, proofreading texts for errors in grammar, punctuation and spelling. They might correct issues relating to style and editorial policy, as well as fact-check the story. In many cases, copy editors also write headlines.
Assistant editors often focus on a specific beat or topic such as the arts or local news. They typically assign stories to reporters and do the first edit of the article.
Managing editors are typically responsible for the daily operations of a publication or website and report to the executive editor, editorial director or editor-in-chief. This person is the head of the editorial department and has final say over which stories run, hires editorial employees and plans budgets.
While editors work in media outlets such as newspapers, magazines and websites, they also work for a variety of organizations on company publications, conference materials, websites and other written documents. Editors typically work full-time and often can go into overtime to meet a deadline. Some editors work on a freelance basis which offers a more flexible schedule.
An editor typically has a bachelor's degree in journalism, communications or English. If an editor plans to work solely in online environments, a background in web content and technical knowledge can be beneficial. Those who want to work in a niche field such as fashion, home design or lifestyle need varying degrees of expertise in the topic.