The training program entailed two months of text and video lessons, biweekly Zoom calls with Fictionary founder Kristina Stanley and other members of the class, and the completion of an entire developmental edit using Fictionary software.
The edit included the tracking of story elements in the software, notes per scene, in-line comments, and what turned out to be a thirty-page summary letter complete with story insights and visuals.
My certification also came with this cool badge:
Fictionary is an editing aid for performing developmental edits in a comprehensive and objective manner.
Fictionary makes it easy for editors to track 38 story elements for character, plot, setting, and structure. The software also allows editors to view data in a variety of ways and to produce visual insights to help clients better see story and character arcs, words and characters per scene, POV issues, POV goals, scene tension, and other important elements.
I’m proud of the work I put in on my Fictionary certification, as it isn’t easy to add training to a full editing schedule. Continued development is important, though, and I try to regularly take classes, often through ACES or the EFA (I’m a member of both). To further my studies, I regularly view webinars and read craft books on editing.
I also meet biweekly with my editors’ group, Pens & Pilcrows, which I founded in 2021. The group has provided a wonderful level of support and inspiration, and it has been all that I’d hoped it would be.
As I said above, adding training to a full schedule is never easy, but I always come away feeling as though I have more to offer clients. This year I’ve taken courses in manuscript evaluation, line editing, markup in PDF page proofs, and, of course, Fictionary.
I’m also enrolled in a class for editing science fiction and fantasy. That kicks off at the end of September, and it’s one I’ve been looking forward to.
Need Copyediting or a Story Edit?
If you’d like to learn more about story editing with Fictionary or my copyediting services, email me at James@castlewallsediting.com or use the online form on this site.