What is the difference between proofreading and editing?

by admin on May 3, 2011

After you have written a book, there are multiple steps to getting it published. To put it simply, one step is editing, another step is revision, and a final step is proofreading. Keep in mind that you may have to go through multiple cycles of editing and revision to perfect your book. Editing involves reading the manuscript critically to detect and correct errors and to improve the flow of the story or text. Proofreading is the final step in editing. It refers to the work that a professional who works for the publishing company you are using will do before your manuscript goes to print.

Editing is typically a multi-phase event in the creation and perfection of a manuscript. You may do some editing of your own manuscript as you write; however, this does not mean that your manuscript is complete and ready for publication. After the first draft, you will want to go through and reread what you’ve written to make sure it is correct, makes sense, and flows well. You will probably also want to get someone else that you trust to read it for you so that you can get an objective opinion. Next, you will again want to go through and make changes and corrections as well as possibly adding to parts that need more detail, deleting unnecessary or redundant text, and better organizing your manuscript if needed.

Here is a partial list of areas that are covered under editing: verb tense consistency, spelling, grammar, sentence structure, paragraph organization, coherence, flow, word choice, and redundancy. Editing also involves more technical areas, such as documenting and crediting sources correctly in research papers as well as rewriting sentences, moving paragraphs, and giving advice about changes, clarifications or elaborations that need to be made in the plot for fiction stories. For nonfiction editing, suggestions may be made about information that needs to be included to help make the work more effective.

After you have gone through the reading, editing, and revising stage several times, then you will want to submit your manuscript to a professional editor so that you can get an unbiased opinion about your writing. When you have gotten back your manuscript, made the necessary changes, and feel confident about your project, it is time to begin trying to get your book published. After you’ve found the right publisher and your manuscript has been accepted, it will then move through the appropriate departments of the publishing company to its final destination, which is the desk (or computer) of the proofreader.

Proofreading is different from editing in that it involves a final check for errors as well as more technical issues such as spacing and formatting. Other areas such as font size and type, margins, and spacing will be corrected if needed. The document may also be converted to another file format, for example, if it is to be published electronically. All of these areas will be brought to the standards of the publishing company. Basically, proofreading is having one final look taken at your manuscript and getting that manuscript ready to publish.

At www.book-editing-services.com, we can help you with editing your manuscript to perfection. Our trained and experienced editors can help you take your work and make it ready to send off to a publisher. Besides providing intensive editing services, we can also give you a professional critique of your writing to point out the positives and areas that need improvement. We can also format your manuscript according to the specifications that you provide. Formatting and professional critiques are add-on services that you can purchase, along with other ones that you can review and choose if needed. After you’ve gone through editing and revision, let us help you get your manuscript ready for publication!

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