The process of copy editing is used to define a broad number of reviewing activities which is done to modify a written content. It is usually done to track grammatical, structural, and other errors which might have been missed during the writing process. There are several types of Copyediting, and each of these terms have its unique development process, and its focus. It is important that you familiarize yourself with every kind, as this is the only way you can give your work an edge over that of others.
Here are the basic types of Copyediting:
- LINE EDITING: Line editing is usually considered as the editing process which judges the work as a whole body of art, rather than a piece with several attached parts. What does this mean? It means that line editing is used to assess a written project and determine its tone, language, accuracy, clarity, effectiveness, and consistency. The line editing process is important because it helps you ensure that your work’s argument are clear and easily-understood. Also, the process of line editing is a two-tier one; the first tier is to find a professional editor who would have no personal relationship with the work, or choose to do it yourself. When you choose to do it yourself, it is important that you stay away from the piece for a couple of days, and come back to it with a fresh mind. This offers new perspectives, and helps you see things that you have missed on first sight.
- PROOFREADING: This is perhaps one of the most important editing process, and it is referred to as the mechanical editing. It involves checking the grammatical accuracy of your work. It also involves checking spellings, punctuation, use of capital letters, paragraphing, formatting, concord — word agreement, sentence structure, and verb usage. Whenever one or two of these processes are ignored, there is bound to be errors in your work, and these errors could make your readers doubt your abilities, and even the message your piece suggests. If you understand that this might be something you aren’t completely capable of doing, you can just employ a professional to do the job for you. Also, it is important that you read the material even after the editor has worked on it. This is because you wouldn’t want the editor to do away with integral parts of your writing.
- FACT CHECKING: This is another important aspect of the editing process. It is important to check your facts so that you do not mislead your readers, or even have them disregard your work over wrong facts. While there are professional bodies in place to help you do this, it is important that you do this yourself as you are the one who have written about this fact in the first place. Always double-check before you submit your work to editors. This is necessary because research happens everyday, and new information can render some facts obsolete.
- REWRITING: As the name suggests, the rewriting process involves revamping the entire piece. This is usually done when you are no longer feeling the emotions the piece is supposed to evoke. It is advised to employ a new hand to do this, as it usually offer a fresh approach to the subject matter.
- SEO COPY EDITING: Most of what we write is meant for the web, and this is why it is important to optimize your copy for Search Engine Optimization (SEO). This involves finding keywords — that is important words that is associated with your target audience. After finding these words, it is important that you incorporate those words into your piece. You must make them appear natural, rather than mechanical. Some writers usually seek the help of professional SEO agencies to find keywords. Also, you must also ensure that all the links embedded in your work are up-to-date.