This is a case study of that Wildean saying, write drunk and edit sober. I felt compelled to get a little meta just in case none of these words made it to the end.
Editing, as an idea, has blown my mind. My short journey in sketch production has illustrated this beauteously. A thousand fuck ups hidden by a masterful click, by the discerning editor. That’s part of the reason I respect blogging above print, it’s all done by the same person, no chain of fluffers- wholesale, straight to the reader- which also means it has quite a lot of scope to be kak.
This new revelation has come to me while working with On Air Media’s video editor, Lex. Watching him salvage, polish and cut seemingly unusable footage into comedic goodness has blown me away. So much so that I might just value the process more than writing, a miserable revelation for a writer.
Another fascinating thing about popular cultural is that the medium of television and new media has given us a thousand new archetypes to aspire to. The reality of the situation is that every one of our cultural blueprints, be it Liam Gallaghers attitude problem or Hank Moody’s libido, have been and contrived and edited. Every minute of the examples we aspire to have spent a considerable amount of time in pre and post production.
Chuck Klosterman made this point first in his essay, This Is Emo, in Sex, Drugs and Cocoa Puffs. The fact that we’re a generation with an inner world dictated to by fabrications seems to complicate things a little. Not only are we trying to live like fictional people, but edited fictional people. Wondering why unhappiness is so easily attained, this might be it.
One of the most irrating things to accept, as an egotistical intelligent person, is that there are other intelligent people. The ability to retain or interpret information doesn’t make you special, not even for a fucking second and that realization irritates me because being intelligent is all I have. This is a lesson editing teaches you; when a smarter person makes your work better by circumnavigating your short sightedness and adding to your attempt, fuck. How humbling, to add to your best attempt. Oh the burden of self love.
The thing that upsets me is that editing isn’t a universal phenomenon, how beauteous our world would become if we had a bylaw insisting that every personality, every utterance, had to passed by an editor before entering the public domain.
But this isn’t happening and it never will, and we’ll forever have to listen to poorly constructed opinions being dribbled out by poorly kept minds.
I think I might need an editor.
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