Illustration by Victor Cavazzoni
"Hi Ksenia. We tweeted briefly about the matter of not being able to afford an editor. You mentioned the term 'crowdsourcing'. Although I do understand what the word means, am I a little unsure of its meaning in relation to Twitter. Are you saying I should simply ask editors on Twitter if they are willing to help me out? That’s the real trick isn’t it? How does one justify to any person that they will benefit if they offer their services for free? Please explain it, so this simple mind of mine can understand it. I know that you have had success with crowdsourcing, which I’m jealous of. I do of course see the benefit and perhaps necessity for an editor. However, I cannot at this point invest several hundred dollars in an editor. Anyway, I would appreciate your input and advice. Now I’ll get back to finishing my final draft."
Hi Maximilian. I did not understand what crowdsourcing means either until someone told me that that's what I do. I simply ask people for help. The big queen of this is Amanda Palmer aka @amandapalmer (she is excellent at crowdsourcing and crowdfunding and crowd-everything), and I highly recommend you read her book The Art of Asking. A lot of what she talks about as a musician we writers could use too. In fact, that is how we got connected. Someone told me, "Hey! You're doing the same thing Amanda does!" And I was like, "Who is Amanda?" The rest is history.
Now allow me to answer your questions one by one, and hopefully by the end of reading this post you will feel that if I could do it, you could do it too. There is no secret to this, really, except for being human (though I do sometimes pretend to be an angry Russian bear, what, with the threat of mauling those who don't write and stuff like that).
1. SIMPLY ASK, AND PEOPLE WILL HELP.