The Four Stages of Editing Your Manuscript

You are finished writing your manuscript and you are ready to find a company to publish your book and get it into bookstores across the country by fall.

Hold on there, cowboy!

You forgot about the editing process. Just because your books has been written doesn’t mean its time to put the pen down and start printing.

In between the writing and the printing of your book comes the editing part.

The editing process is absolutely vital if you are serious about having a hot book that flies off of the shelves.

So, what exactly is an editor going to do to your book?

Well, first of all, know up front that your editor can be one person or a group of four people reviewing your manuscript.

There are about four different facets to editing a book.

The first stage of editing is a content editor. This is by far the largest and most daunting part of the editing process. A content editor looks at a few different things.

Structure and organization of the plot
Development of characters
Motives and subplots
They will also look out for things that need further explanation, factual errors and story gaps.

This first edit can end up requiring a lot of rewrites on your part, but, have patience, your editor is your friend and the end product will be better off after this stage.

The next stage of editing is continuity editing. This person reviews the manuscript paying close attention to your characters and the settings. After all, you wouldn’t want your leading man acting bipolar. You want his eyes to be green on page three and not change to blue on page three hundred. You want his responses consistent throughout the story, and you want your settings to be consistent.

The final two stages are very similar, you have a copy editor and a proof reader (or a proofreader, depending on your editor!).

Your copy editor will go through your manuscript word by word and line by line with a fine toothed comb. They will correct spelling, grammar and punctuation. They will make sure that the passive voice is consistent and accurate. You’ll be surprised at how many errors there will be at this point, even though your manuscript has already been through two stages of editing.

The final step of proof reading usually catches a few minor errors that can quickly be corrected, often without even bothering you.

After you have finished these steps of editing, your manuscript is sure to be very well polished and you are sure to have a much better product to publish. Check Details writing editor app


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