Writers Save Money by Understanding the Different Types of Editing

Editing Tips

My dear fellow writers, before you hire a copyeditor, ensure that you understand the different types of editing, as knowing the difference will save you money! I can’t tell you how often a writer has submitted a manuscript to Publish and Promote, the company I work for or to me at Bodacious Copy, thinking all they needed was proofreading. They were given a quote based on proofreading, and then when I received the work, I realized it required line editing, which is far more involved, takes an editor longer, and costs more. No one likes to be surprised by a substantial increase in their invoice.

Editing is an essential step in the book publishing process. It ensures that the manuscript is clear, coherent, and error-free and meets the publishing industry’s standards. In other words, editing focuses on the meaning of your content, and copyediting focuses on the technical quality. However, a book may go through several different types of editing, each with its specific focus and purpose.

The first type of editing is developmental editing. This type of editing focuses on the overall structure and content of the manuscript. The developmental editor works with the author to identify and fix plot holes, inconsistencies, and other issues that may weaken the overall story. For example, suppose you’re writing a nonfiction book. In that case, a dev edit will help you to structure your outline and introduction, develop your chapter titles and subtitles, and ensure you stay on point as you explain and prove your key points before writing your summary. This type of editing is typically done before the manuscript is submitted for consideration by agents or publishers.

The second type of editing is copyediting. Copyediting focuses on the mechanics of the manuscript, such as grammar, punctuation, and style. In addition, the copyeditor checks for errors and inconsistencies and ensures that the manuscript conforms to the guidelines set by the publisher or industry standards. Copyediting is typically done after the manuscript is accepted by an agent or publisher or once a self-publishing author completes it to their satisfaction.

The third type of editing is line editing. This is what I do best. This type of editing is a combination of developmental and copyediting. The line editor focuses on the content and mechanics of the manuscript. They will work with the author to polish the manuscript and make it the best it can be. Line editing is typically done after the manuscript has been accepted by an agent or publisher or once a self-publishing author has completed writing their book before publishing it.

The fourth type of editing is proofreading. This type of editing is the final step in the editing process. The proofreader checks the manuscript for any remaining errors or inconsistencies. If applicable, they may also check that the manuscript is formatted correctly and meets the publisher’s guidelines.

In addition to these four main types of editing, several specialized types may be used for specific books. For example, technical editing is used for nonfiction books that contain specialized or technical information. This type of editing ensures that the information is accurate and easy to understand. Likewise, medical editing is used for medical books, such as textbooks or patient guides. This type of editing ensures that the information is accurate and up-to-date.

In conclusion, editing is an essential step in the book publishing process. It ensures that the manuscript is clear, coherent, and error-free and meets the standards of the publishing industry or simply becomes the best manuscript it can be before you self-publish. There are several different types of editing that a book may go through, each with its own specific focus and purpose. Developmental editing, copyediting, line editing, and proofreading are the four main types of editing, while specialized types of editing, such as technical editing and medical editing, may also be used for specific kinds of books. Knowing the difference in editing types before hiring a copy editor will save you money.

20 Self-Editing Tips That Save You Money

For thirty-five years, I have been an editor and proofreader. Yes, you read that right. Thirty-five years! I’ve edited everything from legal and medical reports to liner notes for CDs, press releases to websites, and Ph.D. theses to novels. And yes, I know that both PhD and Ph.D. are correct versions of the abbreviation for the Latin term Philosophiae doctor. I read every single day. Being a voracious reader has made me a better editor, so the first piece of advice I have for anyone who wants to write a book is, to read a book

Read a best-selling book in the genre in which you want to write and pay attention to the book’s structure, style, diction, tone, narrative voice, and the author’s use of punctuation. Take notes. Look up “How to Write a Nonfiction Book Outline” or “writing an outline for a fiction book” on Google, read about that, and then write an outline for your book. Once you have created an outline, write the first draft of each chapter, paying attention to your narrative tense. Be consistent with it. If you’re recounting something that happened in the past, use the past tense. Think about who your audience is and write to them. Don’t use a flowery word when a simple one will do. These things alone will make your editor very happy and save you considerable expense.

However, before you submit your manuscript for editing, here are 20 self-editing tips that will save you a lot of money: 

1. Answer the questions, “What do I want to offer the reader?” and “How can I stand out from the crowd?”

2. Consider who your book is for and create a target demographic audience for it.

3. Write for that target demographic. For example, if you’re writing for teens, know the authentic slang used by modern teenagers and make them believable. Interview them to get the right voice.

4. Research, research, research!

5. Decide whether you’re using American or British spelling and be consistent. 

6. Create an outline for your book that organizes chapters with working titles, and then write out what you want to convey in that chapter on recipe cards that you keep at your desk. Refer to them to make sure you’re staying on point.

7. Write your first draft without worrying about it being perfect.

8. When you write your second draft, flesh out all the points you mean to cover to support what that chapter is offering the reader.

9. Stay true to your voice and ask yourself how you can make the book as interesting, informative, and insightful as possible to your readers. 

10. When writing fiction, pay attention to character development, back story and character history, timeline, and a dramatic arc about two-thirds to three-quarters of the way through the book that then becomes resolved in the denouement.

11. Be mindful of changing the lengths of your sentences. Don’t list everything in a long sentence. Instead, break it up and highlight the most critical parts of the paragraph with a shorter sentence. 

12. Don’t use the same word over and over within one paragraph. Instead, use a synonym finder to find different ways of describing the same thing, and be careful about being too repetitive.

13. Start a new paragraph if you completed a specific thought.

14. Pay attention to your diction. Diction is word choice or the style of speaking used by a writer, speaker, or character. The diction used when speaking or writing should match your purpose or audience. 

15. Understand what syntax is. The syntax is the arrangement of words and phrases to create well-formed sentences in a language. In this case, it would be the English language. Again, pay attention to word order. 

16. Be concise. Express what needs saying without unnecessary words. 

17. Make sure that you’ve covered your key points for each chapter.

18. Watch your punctuation. If you’re writing something in quotes and then adding a comma after it, the comma falls within the quotes. The same goes for a period if you’re ending a sentence while still within the quote. When you start a sentence and then add a quote within it, start the quote with a capital letter. Make sure that if you’re asking a question, you use a question mark. Sometimes it’s better to use a conjunction like and or but rather than a comma. Read the sentence back aloud and check its fluidity when in doubt.

19. Put your work through WORD’s Editor and Grammarly’s proofreading service before submitting it to your editor.

20. Above all, enjoy the topic you’re writing about and this process!

Don’t skip this self-editing process unless you want to go broke before selling a single book. I promise it will be worth your time.

Goodbye Scully Love Promo, Hello Bodacious Copy

When I first got involved with social media management back in 2008 and started Scully Love Promo, it was because I wanted to work with musicians.  After all, I have been a music fan my entire life, and having the privilege of working with so many amazing recording artists has been one of the great pleasures of my life.  I don’t know what I was thinking but it was never my intention to become a marketer, I simply wanted to help artists with their social media.  However, as we now know, today, it’s all about marketing.

After one of the most challenging, if not the most challenging year of our lives, I have decided that I need things to change and I need my life to be less stressful because my hair has been falling out.  I’m committed to doing what it takes to make that happen including a change of diet, change of residence, and career change.  I will be 57 years old in January and I can no longer work 12 hours a day at my desk, and in fact, I find seven hours a day to be a challenge, both physically and mentally.

You may already know that I have been working as a copy editor for some time and so far, this year, I have had the honour and pleasure of editing four books.  I invite you to visit my new website for Bodacious Copy at bodaciouscopy.com for details.  I want to do more of this work because I enjoy it and I’m planning to study editing through Queen’s University, beginning in January, to become accredited for the skills I have developed over the past 35 years. You may ask why I am calling my new business Bodacious Copy and the reasons are twofold: “Bodacious” has been a nickname of mine since my college days, and creating bodacious copy is what I do.

As of January 2021, I will be offering my services as a social media marketer using Twitter ONLY because I can no longer keep up with the constant changes and frustrations of the Facebook and Instagram platforms.  I have personally had the most success using Twitter without having to spend money on ads than with any other platform.  I have a strategic plan for how I can best assist musicians and writers with their goals, using Twitter.

These days, it’s more important than ever that musicians get as many listeners and followers (followers are most important) on Spotify and YouTube as possible, particularly for those who have monetized their YouTube channels.  So, it makes sense that we should be using Twitter to connect with Spotify playlist curators and other music curators (because there are many out there), radio stations, and podcasts who will play your music.  The connections that we can make on Twitter with music industry professionals who could be helpful to your career are significant.  You simply need a plan to utilize this platform to the best of your abilities and this is what I want to focus on moving forward.

For first-time or self-published authors, it is important to connect with capable industry professionals who can assist with copy editing, proofreading, interior layout, book cover design, and marketing, as well as with publishing houses, university and literary presses, literary agencies, bloggers, and other online publications who will publish your work.  And of course, you’ll be looking for readers.  I can help you find them.

If you know of any musicians or writers who would like to have assistance with their Twitter marketing, or of anyone who needs an experienced, capable copy editor, I would be delighted if you would share my contact info with them. I can be reached at christinebode@hush.com. Or, just write me a note and let me know how you’re doing.

Thank you to everyone who has trusted me over the years with your social media marketing and copy editing. You know who you are.  You have enriched my life and allowed me to fulfil my dream of being my own boss, and I am deeply grateful.

My best wishes to you for a happy holiday season despite whatever challenges you may be facing.

With gratitude,
Christine Bode