Please join me today in welcoming Heidi Angell to my blog. She has many talents from author to editor and today she is sharing her insight into editing.
The 3 Steps of Editing
From Rough Diamond to Jewel
by Heidi Angell
Our lovely host Tasha asked me to write about editing. She specifically asked about the difference between copyediting and proof reading. I decided to cover the three steps of editing that every editor should be offering because going across the internet I found that it must be very confusing for a writer. There are so many terms to describe “editing services”. Why are there all these terms, and what are you really getting? (Sometimes the “editors” don’t know either, which is where it gets really scary!)
When professional editors break these down, they are doing it to charge extra. Each of these are necessary steps in editing, and a good editor will include all of it into a price quote. (That is what I do.) But it is very important that you clarify that, because you may find your work is not being properly polished if you do not. Then you end up spending a small fortune, not to mention risking your reputation, if you don’t know better!
Let’s start at the beginning of the editing process to keep everything straight.
The first step is general editing (Also called content editing, revisions, story editing, substantive editing, re-writes, etc.). This is where the editor goes through the story and fact checks, catches plot holes, recommends what needs to be cut, re-written, added, etc. A lot of authors work in peer groups and get this done for free there, but a good editor will still check this as they are going through. Let’s use the analogy of your book being a diamond in the rough: This is where you are carving that diamond out of the bedrock surrounding it.
They can catch and polish up the final product to make sure that you are presenting the shiniest diamond out there. IF you do it pre-layout, it is like using a buffing cloth and then tossing your diamond in the bin to be set. Doing it post-layout is like buffing off the diamond after it has been set, getting all the last scratches and fingerprints right before you put it in the display case. A much shinier final diamond, right?
About the Author
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