Writing is a time-consuming task, and so when an author finally finishes their manuscript, they feel a sense of satisfaction and relief. However, there is still one crucial step that they have to go through before getting their work published – editing a manuscript. Once this process is done, the author can easily submit their work to publishers or journals they have in mind.
What is manuscript editing?
Editing a manuscript is like untangling a tight knot, sifting through the clutter to find the meaningful thing. First, let us understand what is a manuscript. It is the written work of an author. The final draft before it goes for editing and proofreading and then publishing.
Editing a manuscript includes finetuning the words, making the sentences concise where necessary, eliminating redundant words and sentences, and checking for grammatical errors, syntax, vocabulary, tenses, etc. While editing a manuscript, the editor also has to ensure there is a correct, logical flow to the written matter; it is structured properly and formatted as well.
When you ask what is a manuscript, you must also know that the editing process also has more to it than just looking to have things corrected. The editor improves the quality of the written work, makes it easy for the reader to understand, and makes it absolutely error-free. Now that you have learned what a manuscript is and its editing, let’s dive a little deeper into the latter part.
Why is manuscript editing needed?
Editing a manuscript is an essential part of the writing and publishing process. This is because of the following reasons:
1) Quality enhancement :
Editing a manuscript will completely change the way it reads. It refines the written work, from the grammar to the formation of sentences, the structure of the written material, correct usage of words and figures of speech, etc. It also helps remove redundancies.
2) It makes the research impactful :
Editing ensures that the most important points in a manuscript are highlighted and brought to the fore. This helps get the message of the research across without any ambiguities and thus also enables it to make for powerful and impactful writing.
3) Polishes the writing :
Editing a manuscript also includes making important grammatical and vocabulary changes that enhance the written work. The editor will change the tenses when required, opt for a more interesting choice of words, etc.
4) Improves the chances of publication :
Having your manuscript edited will improve its chances of getting published. When the publishing editor receives your edited manuscript, it makes a seamless reading experience for them, thereby improving your chances of having it published.
What are the stages of manuscript editing?
Editing a manuscript is not simply just about proofreading it and changing a few words here and there. It is an intensive process, and the following are the different stages of it:
1) Proofreading :
Proofreading is a part of editing a manuscript and not the entire process by itself. This stage involves going through the manuscript to look for errors. It does not involve rewriting or removing redundant sentences altogether.
2) Copy editing :
Copy editing is a more vast process than proofreading. It involves correcting sentences and ensuring the manuscript’s tone, grammar, and vocabulary are consistent. The material is edited keeping in mind the rules of the language, the style guide of the publication, and other editing standards. It includes making changes to ensure readability and clarity while not taking away from the style of the writer.
3) Line editing :
This editing stage polishes the writing for effectiveness while carefully examining every word and sentence for errors. The entire text is refined, and the structure, flow, and writing style are consistent. It also makes the manuscript a highly engaging one.
4) Development editing :
This editing stage includes restructuring the text to ensure the tone and flow of the work are maintained. It includes editing tools such as paragraph positioning, formatting, a logical flow to the narrative, and consistency. It also involves the basics of editing, such as keeping the manuscript error-free. While editing a manuscript, the editor first looks at restructuring the entire work and then subjects it to the other stages, such as line editing, copy editing, and final proofreading, before submitting it.
Now that you know what a manuscript is, what the editing process involves, and other factors, you may understand the tedious and time-consuming task it is to ensure the written work is, in fact, easy to read. Many authors opt to have their manuscripts edited by professionals before they submit it to a publication house.
So while looking for an editing service, the authors must ensure the editors are experienced, the service platform is easy to work with, has some renowned authors as clients, and is precise in its service and delivers it on time.