How editing works

Find out how the editing process works

This involves two complete passes of the document or manuscript.

At the end of the process, you will have a correctly formatted document that is free of avoidable errors.

It will read smoothly, and it'll be ready to send out. 

The first pass is the most time-consuming and will address the sentence and paragraph level problems like structure, flow, wordiness and clarity.

I will need input from you at this stage and will return the manuscript to you with changes tracked in Word via Track Changes and Comment bubbles for queries.

Once you have reviewed my changes and provided answers to any editorial questions raised, I will implement the changes.

Once the changes have been implemented, I will go through the manuscript one last time to check for proofreading errors.

I will provide a correctly formatted, edited manuscript, ready for submission to publishers, literary agents or for self-publishing. 

Copyediting corrects errors in:

  • style

  • language

  • word choice

  • consistency in character

  • consistency in plot & timeline details

  • clarity of meaning

  • clear dialogue expression

  • punctuation with speech tagging

  • factual error checking (to be agreed for non-fiction)

  • unnecessary & overused words 

  • vagueness

  • smoothing awkward sentences 

  • checking verb tenses

Proofreading corrects errors in:

  • grammar

  • spelling

  • punctuation

  • syntax (sentence structure)

  • word choice

  • consistency issues (use of italics, capitalisation, numbers, etc)

  • appropriate paragraph breaks

  • standard paragraph indentation

  • widows & orphans

  • layout

  • page & chapter numbering

  • line spacing

  • links (in digital copy)

  • mismatched captions (images)

Style sheet

Every copyedit and proofread uses a style sheet to ensure consistency throughout a manuscript. It sets out the rules for capitalisation, single or double quotation marks, use of punctuation, US vs UK English, etc. A personalised style sheet will be included with every project. 

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