Managing Editor

A question I am often asked is “Why have a Managing Editor?”

The answer is this: Publishing projects, however small, are often complex because of the number of elements and the stakeholders involved in them.

Elements include: briefing; scoping; content; image collation & captioning; editing; proofing; publishing and promotion.

Stakeholders can number: clients; funders; lawyers; writers; image suppliers; publishers/printers; iwi; local bodies and community groups.

The main purpose of having a managing editor is to ensure client control and predictability. Unfortunately, publishing is littered with projects that have run away on writers (and consequently clients!), who may be great researchers and writers but not necessarily able to manage budgets or deadlines.

I believe projects succeed when dedicated planning goes into them. By setting both the editorial and budgeting parameters at the beginning of the project, predictability is a given.

I have extensive skills in publishing – from journalism to managing significant publishing projects and believe my experience in fundraising and public relations; contract management; team management and project delivery on budget are invaluable.

My most recent major project was managing WEST – The History of Waitakere (Random House, July 2009); from scoping and developing the brief; through brokering an MoU with publisher Random House; securing funding (approx $240k); contracting the General Editor and 24 writers; managing image collation and delivery; content editing and delivery, and managing proofing to publication. Consultation and ongoing liaison with numerous stakeholders, including Waitakere City Council; community groups (local historical societies and historians); iwi (Te Kawerau a Maki and Ngati Whatua) and the publisher (Random House) was at the heart of this role.

My greatest strength probably lies in my ability to keep everyone in the waka, whilst continuing to drive projects on home. I am no longer phased by the odd capsize and can quickly regroup; encourage waysiders to get back on board and carry on. While I am tenacious, I am not a bully, and can weigh up divergent ideas holistically, keeping the project’s greatest good as my barometer.

I’m happy to discuss your publishing project and if appropriate, will scope it to establish content and image parameters and costs.

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