Interview. Emma Mikayelian

Interview with Emma Mikayelian, the Armenian Editor-in-Chief of “Enlight” Public Research Center NGO

How did you find out about “Enlight”?

I had been following “Enlight” social media, particularly the Facebook page before volunteering; I was reading with interest the cultural articles and translations posted on the page. Then I read in an announcement that the Research Center was looking for editors. I was encouraged by my journalist friend, in whose life, according to her words (now also mine), becoming a member of  “Enlight” was the biggest and strongest beginning in the professional field.

Why editor?

I am a philologist by profession. My love for text editing started in the second year of university: we were studying a subject named “Text Editing and Creative Approach”. We were subjecting the “raw” texts to orthographic, punctuational, grammatical, syntactic, and stylistic changes. All this really fascinated me very much, then a special love for text editing was formed; to correct, change and suggest new versions.

What is the editor’s primary problem?

There are various problems proposed to an editor. The first and foremost is probably the perfect knowledge of Armenian. However, in this case  I would like to mention the problems that exist in the context of  author-editor, translator-editor. Each author and translator has his unique style of constructing a written text, and it has to be preserved during editing.

On what principle do you choose the materials?

The materials are distributed according to the work schedule. In fact, when I edit a text, I try to move away from some content issues; interesting-uninteresting, scientific-cultural. But of course, I will confess that it is more pleasant for me to edit texts with cultural content, though it does not prevent me from editing materials with economic or political content with the same enthusiasm. 

Which are the main difficulties of your work?

The difficulties were in the beginning, mainly technical which were resolved . As for facing, for example, punctuational parallel forms, certain corrections in the content and questionable cases in the editing process, they can be fully solved with the professional advice of the editor-in-chief  or other editors of the department.

What do you expect from the author?

I expect the author to review the translated and analysed material several times, to be careful when adding links, and after getting acquainted with the proofreaded text to contact the editor, to suggest new variants in case of agreement or disagreement. 

What does “Enlight” give to the volunteer in general, and what did  it give you?

“Enlight” gave me professional growth as a newly formed editor, in addition to it editing diverse articles gives a wide range of information, as well as new friends and pleasant moments. Another great achievement with “Enlight” is cooperating with “Wikimedia Armenia” and let me say that I enjoyed translating or editing articles on Wikimedia in small steps, and now I have a good knowledge of Wikimedia editing tools.

In your opinion, what qualities are needed to become a member of “Enlight”?

Readiness, responsibility, delicacy towards people and positive attitude towards the world.

Do you have any variants for the new slogan related to the 4th anniversary of “Enlight”?

The new slogan, “Learn to change!”, refers not only to the professional growth of “Enlight” in various fields but to everything in general; we learn in order to change ourselves, ourselves in the given field, in human relations and relationships with the world and the environment.

The interview was conducted by Inga Shirakian.

Author: Inga Shirakian © All rights reserved.

Translator: Mariam Antikian