From Final Cut Pro professor Larry Jordan, this is geared more towards the amateur but I think it applies towards us daily editors too:
1. Don’t edit your home movies – the people in them are too important to you to cut them out. Just enjoy these movies for what they are.
2. Think about what you hate about watching everyone ELSE’S home movies. That’s what you need to get rid of in your movies.
* Shaky, hand-held camera work
* Out of focus shots
* Indecipherable images
* Inaudible audio
3. A good video tells a story – find the story and you’ve found your video. Even a short video can tell a powerful story.
4. The goal is NOT to create a video that YOU want to watch. The goal is to create a video that someone who has never seen it wants to watch.
5. The most important part of your video is the audio.
6. No time you spend lighting is ever wasted.
7. Shorter is always better than longer. Get people interested in your subject first.
8. If you have to use special effects, there’s something wrong with your story. Effects are often a crutch for inadequate performers, story, or concept.
9. We use dialog to tell the story; we use music to tell the emotion.
10. Don’t try to make your video “perfect.” Just focus on making each video you do better than the last one.
via Larry’s Blog.