I < heart > editing.
Often when I’m contacted for ghostwriting or copywriting, what’s really needed is editing. If significant text has already been generated, it’s quite possible that editing is all you need. The way to be sure? Get in touch for a free consult to discuss your project and make an assessment.
What kind of editing do you need?
Newspapers, magazines, and books all have different editing methods and styles. And within the book industry, each genre has unique demands. For example, fiction has different editorial needs than a non-fiction business book.
Below are a list of common editing services you might need when it comes to book manuscripts.
Also referred to as substantive editing. The document or manuscript is evaluated as a whole and problems of structure, information organization, and coherence are corrected. Sentences may be removed or added. Paragraphs may be rewritten, condensed, or expanded. Entire blocks of text may be moved from one section to another. Substantive editing usually includes one revision at no additional charge.The developmental editing sometimes occurs while new material is being written, although our preference is to work on a complete manuscript or draft.
PLEASE NOTE: For book production, you will still need line editing or copy editing after the developmental edit.
Also referred to as line editing. Copy editing includes the following:
- correcting spelling, grammar, punctuation, syntax, and word usage while preserving the meaning and voice of the original text
- ensuring a consistent style and format
- reading for overall clarity on behalf of the prospective audience
- double-checking inconsistencies or apparent errors and misquotes
- noting permissions needed to publish copyrighted material
- cross-checking references, sources, captions, art, figures, tables, equations, and other features for consistency with their mentions in the text
PLEASE NOTE: You will still need a final proofreader to look over your manuscript for one last “set of eyes” before going to print.
Proofreading is the lightest form of editing after all major edits have taken place. Minor errors are corrected during proofreading. Minor errors are defined as:
- errors of grammar and style (e.g., verb tense, units of measurement, use of numerals and words such as “5” or “five”)
- errors of capitalization, punctuation (e.g., the use of commas, semicolons, colons, periods, dashes, apostrophes)
- errors of spelling and word usage (e.g., to/too, affect/effect)
Proofreading relies heavily on any number of Style Guides. These are the guides I use for my work unless otherwise requested:
- Chicago Manual of Style. It is known in some circles as “the Editor’s Bible.” This is the “go-to” style guide for most books.
- The Associated Press Stylebook (or AP Stylebook): Though it is the bible of journalism, this guide is also widely used in marketing, PR, broadcasting, video, and corporate communications.
Regardless of the style guide, I’m a big fan of the Oxford comma.