Good Editors Go Out to Lunch

At a meeting of the American Society of Magazine Editors, we were invited to talk about tricks of the trade and what we’d learned. John Mack Carter, editor of Good Housekeeping, told us: “Go out to lunch.”

He was making the point that one of the things an editor shouldn’t do is to stay in the office too much, talking to the same people day after day. Go out to lunch with people not connected to your publication, often people not in journalism. Find out what they’d like to know more about, what they see happening in their field, how they see the future, what they’d do if they had your job.

Then send a thank you note when you get back to the office.

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