Dear Publication Advisors

Publishing Help

Dear Publication Advisors,

I'm confused about the industry side of writing. I thought I understood the job of an editor, but now I realize there are different types. What are the definitions of these jobs? Agents? Managers? Help!


Misunderstood Words


Dear Misunderstood Words,

When looking for someone to guide you through the publication process, there are many job titles that sound similar. Here is a list of different, yet seemingly-similar, professions.

Literary Manager:
A literary manager is primarily someone who works with screenwriters. Theater, television, and film are their main forms of expertise.

Literary Agent:
Literary agents work with authors to procure sellable books to traditional publishing houses. An agent represents the writer while negotiating contracts with the publishing house.

Developmental Editor:
When a writer needs help with the overall structure of a story, a developmental editor helps organize the flow, character development, narration etc.

Copy Editor:
A copy editor is what most people think of when they hear the word ‘editor’. They identify grammar, phrasing, and punctuation issues.

Publication Advisor:
A publication advisor helps writers identify which magazine/journal/newspaper best fits their writing style. They help create a bio and cover letter as well as research the rejection and acceptance statistics for each publication.

Trying to do everything on your own is always tempting, but in my experience, writers don't always understand the best way to revise and market. Getting outside help is always recommended for those who do not wish to self publish. 

Questions? Email: [email protected] 

Rebecca Lee