MT McGuire Books

Advice from the Inept: Three things to remember about editing…

Blimey! I’m amazed at how much stuff crops up that you don’t anticipate. Here’s another blindingly obvious thing that didn’t occur to gumbee author here (Doh!).

When I first published Few Are Chosen I had it edited. I printed it out, sent it off and then put in the edits and corrections myself because I, personally, find it easier to do my alts from a paper copy.

However, when the book started going out to reviewers I began to hear about typos. After the statutory few hours huddled under the table whimpering I realised I’d put in as many errors as I’d taken out, so I sat down and sourced a second proof reader who edited the actual file with track changes on so I could see what he’d done.

Needless to say, no errors because HE put the alts in, rather than spanner author here. Mwah ha ha haargh, finally the penny drops. He also checked it again, after I’d been through it and made a few copy edits he suggested.

The result is one lovely new, super-duper improved version of Few Are Chosen, hopefully containing no more typos than you’d find in something put out by a mainstream publisher.

So there we have it; three gob-smackingly obvious things to think about if you’re paying for an editor.

1. Get your edits done in the file, it’s easer to read them on paper but it’s also easier to put in new errors.
2. Ask your editor to re-read any copy alterations he suggests.
3. It’s worth getting it edited by two people. Each of the editors on Few Are Chosen brought different and valid viewpoints which improved it immeasurably. It also means that if you find it easier to read your edits off a paper copy, you can get the copy edit done first, on paper and then get the file proofed afterwards.

Hmm… now why didn’t I think of that before?

Posted July 31, 2011 and visited 2677 times, 8 so far today

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