Make Every Word Count

Make Every Word Count: Cut dead weight from your novel like a line editor

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Some words and phrases automatically trigger an editor to stop and evaluate their usefulness, and some simply scream, “Remove me! Remove me!” Cutting dead weight can be the difference between a book that engages readers and keeps them up late reading and a book that has an appealing premise but lacks staying power. At some point in your revision process, think like a line editor and evaluate the effectiveness of… Read More »Make Every Word Count: Cut dead weight from your novel like a line editor

Track Changes Feature in Word

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If you haven’t hired an editor before, you may not be familiar with Track Changes. This is a handy tool editors use to show clients the changes that have been made to their documents. It also gives clients the power to easily accept or reject the changes. Click on the Review tab in Microsoft Word. The paper-and-pen icon on the Track Changes button turns the feature on and off. When… Read More »Track Changes Feature in Word

More Than Proofreading: Four Levels of Editing

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Traditionally, a book goes through four levels of editing, sometimes multiple rounds at each level. It’s important to understand what is done at each level so that you know how to hire the right editor. Whether you are revising a manuscript to prepare it for agents and publishers or for self-publishing, take some time to learn the different levels of editing and which type of editor you need. Different freelance… Read More »More Than Proofreading: Four Levels of Editing

Commonly Misused Words

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One of the most memorable classes I took in college was on the history of the English language. The influence other languages had on the development of English explains the inconsistencies, the exceptions to the rules, and the varied vocabulary. For example, when do you use “more” or “most” to increase the intensity of a word, and when do you use the suffixes “-er” or “-est”? It depends on whether… Read More »Commonly Misused Words


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Commas are the most used (and abused) punctuation mark. Instead of falling into the trap of thinking you should insert a comma at each natural pause in a sentence, use this as a quick reference guide. Use a comma before a coordinating conjunction (and, but, for, or, nor, yet, so) that joins two independent clauses in a compound sentence. (An exception can be made if the clauses are very short.)… Read More »Commas