Editors Are a Writer’s Best Ally
Why Do Writers Use Editors?
A reliable and competent editor is a writer’s closest ally. Documents that contain errors or inconsistencies can distract the reader’s attention and decrease the credibility of the writer. It’s the editor’s job to insure the content and format is correct – proper use of grammar, spelling, style, format, and use of English. A carefully edited document communicates the writer’s message clearly and effectively, satisfying the reader and bringing credit to the author. Experienced writers know they don’t need to go it alone – it makes sense to use the services of a professional editor before any document is published or seen by the public.
Many Benefits Come from Using the Assistance of an Editor
Using the services of a professional editor affords writers more confidence in their final product. Professional writers never skimp on the editing process because they know this can be the number one way to avoid costly mistakes. Once a manuscript is professionally edited, writers can submit their work for publishing with confidence that it is a perfected and polished finished document.
Editing vs. Proofreading. What’s the Difference? See Proofreading Services.
Website Editing. The demand for website content and editing is growing rapidly as more and more content is being broadcast and published online. Website editing deals with the content of a web page, correcting grammar, spelling, and typography, as well as ensuring logical organization, consistency, and appropriate style. We make sure that content is clear, concise, and to the point. Website editing also ensures quick and easy access to information, as well as easy navigation through web pages.
How Do We Track our Changes? When we edit documents for transparency purposes, we use the ‘Track changes’ feature in Microsoft Office. This way our clients can easily see the changes we suggest in red, at which time they can either accept or reject the changes. When the project has been completed, we will email two documents: 1) a marked up copy with suggested changes in red, and 2) a final copy with the changes accepted.
Levels of Editing. Editorial services can range from the beginning stages of extensive rewriting all the way up to the final polishing phase. The typical manuscript moves through three stages of editing: developmental editing, substantive editing, and copyediting. Manuscripts destined for publication may also undergo production editing.
- Light editing: Correct errors in spelling, grammar, punctuation, syntax, and usage. Make style consistent.
- Medium editing: Ensure clarity, trim redundancy, and tighten wording. Eliminate sexism, stereotyping, and confusing statements. (Medium editing also includes those items addressed by light editing.)
- Heavy editing: Ensure coherence, logic, and organization. Revise unclear passages. Suggest transitions and summaries. (Heavy editing also includes those items addressed by light and medium editing.)
- Developmental Editing. Developmental editors work with material that is not yet in manuscript form. They establish a collaborative relationship with writers and help shape a manuscript from a rough draft, an outline, or even sketchy notes. The writer specializes in content; the editor specializes in form. As the author writes or rewrites, the developmental editor provides feedback, guidance, and encouragement.
- Substantive Editing. Substantive editors, also known as manuscript editors, work with completed manuscripts. They begin by assessing the manuscript as a whole for style, tone, structure, logic, and accuracy—they eliminate the manuscript’s weaknesses and enhance its strengths. These editors may reorganize the manuscript, rewrite portions of text, eliminate wordiness, write transitions and summaries, and work with the author to resolve inconsistencies or clarify confusing passages. A manuscript edited for substance goes back to the client for final review.
- Copyediting. Copyeditors revise the manuscripts line by line. The copyedit process can be light, medium, or heavy (technical), depending on the complexity of the manuscript.
- Production Editing. Production editors manage the process a manuscript goes through to become a publishable product. They coordinate the services of the copyeditor, designer, artist, and proofreader to control quality, maintain the production deadline, and stay within budget.
Fresh Eyes. Many writers opt to have a fresh “second set of eyes” view their document as part of the final process. They know it’s well worth the effort to avoid costly mistakes. This is especially recommended for complex documents, such as legal, medical, technical, and scientific documents.
Turn-Around Time. Our turn-around time depends on the length and complexity of the document, and timeframe required by the author. Our clients count on us to return their documents in the shortest time possible on or before the deadline. As expected, shorter pieces have shorter lead times and longer documents may take longer to process.
What Are the Benefits of Working with Freelance Editors? Freelance editors are flexible, adaptable, and available. Most important, they have no overhead. They are able to work for both small and large publishers, corporations, small businesses, and individuals. They work with authors who are self-publishing, researchers who are submitting papers to journals, and students who need help with their dissertations and theses. And thanks to the networking opportunities offered on the Internet, freelance editors are not restricted to their geographical area.
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