Copy-editing

Copy-editingCopy-editing is the process of reviewing and correcting a manuscript to improve readability and ensure accuracy and consistency. I offer copy-editing in fiction and non-fiction.

Before sending your book for copy-editing, ensure you have reviewed and edited it thoroughly yourself. It’s also advisable to have it critiqued, perhaps by your reading group, by beta readers, or by a professional developmental editor.

During a copy-edit I look at:

  • Spelling, punctuation and grammar
  • Repetition and wordiness within sentences and paragraphs
  • Sentence structure and word usage
  • Inconsistencies or impossibilities within the story
  • Timeline issues or obvious pacing problems
  • Character issues, such as disappearing characters, inconsistent physical descriptions, illogical family trees
  • Basic fact checking, such as historical and geographical references

The emphasis is on how the reader will receive your work, so I am concerned mostly with clarity and consistency and on picking up issues you may not have noticed (not being able to see the wood for the trees is a very common hazard of being a writer!).

It’s very important to me to respect your voice as the author – I won’t rewrite your work; I will raise issues for you to consider.

I work in MS Word with Track Changes switched on so that you can easily see the amendments and suggestions made and can choose to accept or reject each change made. If you’re unfamiliar with this function, there are many online guides and tutorials to help, such as this one, and many YouTube videos, such as this one.

I also offer a free 500-word sample edit so you can see what you’ll be getting if you book me. Ask me about booking this.