“Hi. My name is Steve Jobs and I run a little computer company called Apple.”
Apple? What kind of a name is “Apple” for a computer company, Crockett wondered.
“This was in the mid 70s as I recall,” he says. “I’d recently designed and overseen the construction of my GPI Publications in Northern California’s Cupertino where we created such music magazines as ‘Guitar Player,’ ‘Keyboard’ and later ‘Drums and Drumming,’ ‘Bass Player’ and ‘Frets.’ Mr. Jobs asked if I had any spare office space.
“I need to get a room where a few of us can get away without being bothered every five minutes,” he explained.
Crockett says, “I did have a spare room at the end of our building, showed it to him and he said it was perfect. Cool. Some extra income, too. All I’d have to do is draft a rental agreement and get a deposit. A rental agreement? Something in writing? You bet; you know how flaky computer companies were.”
Three times Jobs lost the agreement, and “I told him he couldn’t move a chair in until I had a signed one in my hand,” Crockett recalls. “A couple of weeks went by without a peep. One day I was holding a meeting with all my key editors when the door to my office burst open and in rushed this tall, skinny, very intense Steve Jobs.
“Where’s another copy? I’ll sign it right now.” Pretty much interrupting the nine-person staff meeting.
“Steve,” Crockett said, rather shocked. “Make an appointment with my secretary.”
“I haven’t time. We’ll do it now!” said Jobs.
“No, we won’t,” and Crockett took Jobs by the shoulders, turned him toward the door and marched him out to the secretary’s desk, he remembers. “Make an appointment.”
Jobs did, and the pair ultimately worked everything out. Jobs, Steve Wozniak and another man now had their first satellite office. And Crockett had a renter.
“Two things strike me now that Steve’s gone and I’m running EditorsEdit.com,” Crockett says. “One, I’m probably the only guy who ever ushered Steve Jobs, ultimately the Steve Jobs, out of his office, and, Two, I should have taken Apple stock instead of the hundred bucks a month rent.” Crockett founder and lead editor of Editors Edit may be reached at www.editorsedit.com.
(PALMDALE, Calif.) “We all know that writers write, but what comes next? Editors Edit.” This is the mantra of a new Web business – EditorsEdit.com, created by longtime writer and editor Jim Crockett.
“A good editor is invaluable to nearly every writer,” says Crockett. “Think of Scribner’s Maxwell Perkins in the ‘20s. Words simply poured unabated from young first-time author Thomas Wolfe. When he delivered his initial novel, “Look Homeward Angel,” to Perkins, it came in cardboard boxes. After a mighty struggle, Perkins got Wolfe to agree to cut 90,000 words – 90,000! But the massive effort resulted in a 1929 best seller and a career that signaled Thomas Wolfe as one of the premier writers of his generation. Without editor Maxwell Perkins, there’d likely be no ‘Thomas Wolfe’.”
Crockett, with his partner Devon Maitozo, realized, however, that editing takes many shapes. He says, “No writer I’ve known wants to turn in to his or her publisher sloppy, amateurish work. For one thing, busy publishers can’t be bothered slugging through obvious misspellings, inconsistent tenses, unclear relationships, typos and the rest. Give them a clearly written, professional piece and you’re ahead of the game.” He should know, having written or edited dozens of books, numerous screenplays and thousands of articles.
Whether you’re creating a press release, a biography, a screenplay, a newspaper article, a romance novel or a thesis, he believes, the writer’s reputation, success and editorial future depends on top quality work. “Saves a lot of embarrassment, too,” Crockett smiles.
EditorsEdit.com charges writers just $35 per hour, with the first hour free to new clients. When they’re done with a piece, the writer receives a line-by-line detail of recommended error corrections and editorial suggestions. “We don’t actually make all the changes ourselves,” Crockett explains, “because we want authors to learn what they may have done wrong, and to change or not change as they want. I mean, after all, it’s their name on the page, not ours.”
Devon Maitozo, who handles the Internet marketing for the company, says, “Ours is an online world these days. Not all businesses need storefront facilities. Sure, if you’re selling mattresses or carpeting maybe – though maybe not – but in the 21st century, online business rules. And EditorsEdit.com is right at the forefront of providing what writers need: editing that helps them say what they want to say. And does it quickly and economically.”