Katie McCoach is a freelance developmental book editor at KM Editorial.
WHAT LED YOU TO START WORKING IN DIGITAL/MEDIA PUBLISHING?
I studied writing in college so I could spend a career—my life—being involved in writing in some way. My plan was to become an author. I didn’t expect to fall in love with helping other authors. Eventually, I realized I had been moving toward it for years, and once I embraced the idea of opening my own business, it all clicked. I love seeing other writers grow and succeed, seeing their stories come to life, and knowing I helped in some way. Being involved in the digital world of publishing makes my job as an editor so much fun because I have access to writers around the world. I love that it’s not limited to just where I live. I’ve had wonderful clients come from England, Scotland, and Australia.
WHAT DOES A TYPICAL DAY LOOK LIKE FOR YOU?
A typical day for me involves editing manuscripts, reading manuscripts (without editing), responding to social media interactions, replying to lead emails and looking for new avenues to find work, updating my website, creating newsletter and blog articles, and managing finances.
WHAT’S YOUR WORK SETUP LOOK LIKE?
I do all my work on my laptop! Yes, just my MacBook Air, a wireless mouse, and my kitchen table. Most of my work is using Microsoft Office: Outlook, Excel, and Word. I use Google Drive and Google calendar to keep track of work. WordPress to update my website. Slack is a fantastic messaging system I use for a few different groups, mostly to chat with other editors. It’s been great to have other editors to chat with throughout the day, get advice from, etc. I also use it to manage my social media, and for contests, I’m involved in. I’ve recently been introduced to Airtable. And I manage all my clients, invoices, expenses, and more in Freshbooks. Oh, and of course I use notebooks and planners to physically write down my to-do list.
WHAT DO YOU DO OR GO TO GET INSPIRED?
In all honesty, I look to my authors—my clients—for inspiration. These are folks who are pursuing their dreams. They aren’t holding back, they are doing everything in their power to create the best work they can, and they are writing, revising, and publishing multiple books. “No” isn’t a word in their vocabulary. Who better to inspire me?
WHAT’S YOUR FAVORITE PIECE OF WRITING OR QUOTE?
If it was easy, everyone would be doing it.
WHAT IS THE PASSIONATE PROBLEM YOU ARE TACKLING AT THE MOMENT?
Right now, I’m actually working on revamping my editorial services to better sync with the current demands of writers and the industry. After a few years, I’ve found what works, what doesn’t, and I’m constantly still exploring that to make the most of what I do and to provide the best value of service for clients.
IS THERE A PRODUCT, SOLUTION OR TOOL THAT MAKES YOU THINK IT IS A GOOD DESIGN FOR YOUR DIGITAL PUBLISHING EFFORTS?
There are so many great tools out there. Ideally, I’d love one that could help with tasks, client management, lead tracking, social media, task management, and calendar syncing. For a low or free cost. Yep, I know I’m asking a lot, which is why I use multiple platforms for my daily business.
ANY ADVICE FOR AMBITIOUS DIGITAL PUBLISHING AND MEDIA PROFESSIONALS JUST STARTING OUT?
Engage with the community you want to surround yourself in. I love chatting with writers and other editors, but I also talk to social media experts, cover designers, and publishers. There’s a lot of overlap, and there are things you can learn from many people in the different corners of your industry.