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Proofreading May Not Be What You Think It Is: The 3 Stages Of Book Editing

Proofreading May Not Be What You Think It Is The 3 Stages of Book Editing

When you finish writing a manuscript, it must go through a meticulous editing and proofreading process before publishing it. However, many people wonder if editing is the same as proofreading. The answer is no: although proofreading and editing tend to be tangled, they are two different levels of the review process of writing, be it a book, an article, or any other piece of content.

Next, we will tell you the difference between proofreading and editing and why the three stages of book editing are crucial in the foundation.

How To Edit A Book?

Editing a text is the immediate step after writing it and involves a deep analysis carried out by a professional. This analysis consists of a meticulous reading of each of the sentences of the manuscript to comprehensively improve all content. Among other things, the editing process implies reorganizing the manuscript’s structures if required; expanding what has potential; making what is said more precise; and rewriting, adding, or deleting information.

During the editing process, certain questions arise concerning the content’s plot, tone, and style. The idea is to resolve all these inconsistencies during this instance. A manuscript’s editor will always consider what the author wants to express; therefore, all possible communication channels between both parties must open. The edition rounds can be several: the important thing is that the author sees reflected what he wants to say.

How To Correct An Edition?

Once the manuscript editing process is finished, it’s time to move on to the next level: proofreading. This instance is carried out by a language specialist known as a proofreader, who will clean the copy of any errors. Within the correction, there are two instances: style correction and spelling correction.

  • Style correction

Before detailing the characteristics of style correction, it is essential to know that it is not the same as editing. Both processes could be confused, but it is necessary to consider that, at the moment of reaching the instance of style correction, the structure of the text should be, in principle, the final one. This is not to say that you can’t make changes on the fly. Of course: anything to improve the script is welcome!

Now, let’s see: what is style correction? A style correction (also known as “copy proofing”) aims to give the text clarity: that it sounds natural, fluid, and understandable. In this process, the text will be adjusted to current standards, resolving inconsistencies and correcting grammar, spelling, or syntax errors.

  • Spelling correction

After the style correction, it’s time to leave the text pristine. Spell checking involves correcting spelling and punctuation errors; correctly applying all typographical resources; unifying the criteria in using styles such as italic, round and bold; adapt the writing of numbers.

In short, scrub and rub the script until no speck is left!

Orthotypographical correction is a mandatory step before the publication of any material. For example, a misplaced comma, a missing tilde, or a misspelling could be the difference between an editorial’s “yes” and the “no.”

What Is Proofreading?

What is proofreading 

Once the text has gone through the editing, proofreading, and spell-checking processes, it can be considered ready. In these instances, the textual content will be free of errors of any kind, it will have a clear and precise structure, and its content will be harmonious, natural, and coherent.

However, at a certain point, the text will have to face one last step: proofreading. This final step involves scanning the text for any remaining errors. We have already established that there can be no failures at this stage. A mistake could be a formatting problem or, at worst, an imprecise word or double space.

The proofreading request is usually worked on jointly between the design team, the editing team, and the authors of a text. Some questions can arise regarding specific aspects such as headers, resource visuals, and the spaces between words and blocks of text, among other elements.

Where Do We Go Next?

This question is usually one of the first people who think they have finished a book and are interested in publishing it. To answer it, it is necessary to understand how the process works, knows who the actors participating in it are, and consider various alternatives for publishing. Only in this way will we have enough information to decide which path is the best for us and our work. Otherwise, it would be challenging to find our opportunity in that immense sea of books published every year, where there is very little room for new authors, and what fits must be good.

Let’s Start By Going Over The Top 3 Stages Of The Editorial Process:

We are sure, more than once, you have wondered about editing a book professionally. You already have your story. After months, even years, opening the same document, writing, deleting, rewriting, and mulling over the plots of your book, you feel that it is finally complete. However, you still have to shape it and make it a “real” book. That is, you should start thinking about editing. At this point, you will indeed have infinite doubts and questions: how do you edit a book? But we assure you that everything is easier than it seems when publishing a book.

First, you must consider how to edit a book to advance your mission. Of course, editing a book is not a piece of cake. If you want your book to look as striking and glossy as the ones in the shop windows, you will have to remember templates and automatic editions. The best thing is that you place your trust in professional book editing services. Each professional is specialized in an area (text proofreading, cover design, distribution) to give your book the necessary quality and a dignified appearance.

1. Publishing contract

All your doubts about how to publish a book are solved, and finally, an accepted budget. Now it’s time to put a little signature so the agreement has legal validity. We know that contracts can be scary. It is normal. After all, you are risking your project and your money. However, contracts with publishers are pretty similar and do not differ from each other. The key is always to read well and make sure you have everything clear. Of course, each publisher will have its conditions, and the contract will vary depending on the specific services that interest you.

In the document, we will sign, both the obligations and the rights that the publisher and you, the author, have been specified. You must detail the contracted services, for example, proofreading, layout for electronic or paper books, number of copies, characteristics of the printed book, etc. Without forgetting the most crucial thing: copyright. Contrary to what happens with the big labels, they will continue to be yours and will be free of unfair terms.

  • Is my book in safe hands?

When we send our idea by mail, certain uneasiness arises, the fear that it could be misused. It would be best if you didn’t worry about that. The contract includes aspects related to confidentiality, both your book and your data. The publisher will ensure that your work is safe, secure, and not used beyond what is established.

  • What if I decide to cancel the contract?

Professionals include in their contract the possibility of canceling it without problems. However, when working, you may decide to invalidate your agreement after having published a book for several reasons.

Example: another publisher has offered you better conditions or something extra, and you think the change could be beneficial. If you feel that you should do so or it is a clear advantage, you could cancel the contract without any legal prejudice for you or the new publisher wanting to acquire your work. The rights belong to you, and you are the one who decides where you take your book.

2. Layout: essential when editing a book

No matter how well structured your manuscript is in a Word document, it must be processed to take it to the printer or distributed in eBook format (ePub, Kindle, .mobi). The editorial professionals will ensure that your book is at the level of those published by the big names in the sector.

The layout is to organize structure, design, and distribute the text elements correctly for a perfect presentation and reading. It goes beyond sketching a beautiful cover; it is like your editorial ID. Your name is one of the first things people see when choosing a book. Do you want it to be associated with a disastrous design? The quality of the story needs to be improved. Outwardly, it should also look like a masterpiece. You have to take care of every one of them.

  • Differentiate yourself in a saturated sector

With all the books out there on Amazon, how are readers going to notice you? Because of the synopsis? No. Before reading this, they must have received a stimulus that has led them to pick up your book: the cover. To buy, you first have to see. Imagine that a person chooses a book that is right next to yours. Do you think he’s seen it? Certainly, you have not even noticed its existence, and if you have, it has been so ordinary that you have not wanted to waste your time. It sounds cruel, even exaggerated, but the reality is that nobody looks at a book, by the book. We either go for a shot or look for something that captures our attention. We associate a good image with good content. It’s that simple.

3. Distribution of the work once published.

Now that everything is ready, how do you make them know you? It would be best if you planned to promote your book as soon as you finish writing. Be sure to have a copy in your hands to open an account on social networks and make a website quickly and without any strategy. As we mentioned before, be professional with everything. Put the same amount of effort you put into writing (or more) into everything you do.

There are hundreds, even thousands of new writers just like you, waiting for their chance. It is not easy to enter this world. However, the previous editing phases become more empowering with these added actions.

Your book is a treasure and deserves the best treatment.

As you can see, only three simple stages are enough for us to make your dream of publishing a book come true. You already have the answers on editing and proofreading a book, which was simple.

Now we like to divide the editorial process into before, during, and after the book as a physical object.

BEFORE: This is the creative stage. It is not that the other stages are not, but this one is par excellence. It is the moment in which the authors find a genre to write about, outline characters, pose situations for these characters to solve, create climates and ultimately establish the content of the work. At this stage, it is about something other than writing the work and passing the line. A novel, for example, when it is finished, needs to rest long enough so that the author can take it up again later to do a review or two or three, without fear of how many, but always with new eyes. Revisions are essential if we want coherent, well-structured, and, most importantly, well-written material.

DURING: This is the action stage. The work is ready, we find a publisher that wants to publish it, or we have already decided that the best thing to do is to publish it ourselves, and this makes us move from the creative stage of the work to the creative stage of the book. It is, specifically, the editorial production process.

AFTER: It is the stage of expansion. This means that at this stage, you can be creative as in the first or active as in the second. Still, here, to these two aspects, we must add the central ingredient that interests us at this time: presenting the book publicly, communicating, disseminating, reach readers. It is when the book promotion strategies are put into play and decide to find the best distribution channels, to get notes in the media, and, ultimately, to reach readers as much as possible.

What Is Text Editing?

Keys to better organize the writing process: editing. The editing of the text corresponds to the final revision, where formal aspects such as misspelled words, spelling, punctuation, format, concordances, quotation marks, hyphens, etc., are corrected.

What Is Paragraph Editing?

A text editing tool is a program or application that allows the creation and modification of a text document. Operating systems usually include a text editor by default, such as Notepad on Windows or TextEdit on Mac OS X.

What steps does text editing include?

Everything you need to know to do a text editing:

  • Format
  • Title
  • Introduction
  • Subtitle
  • CTA

What Is Book Publishing?

What is book publishing

Publishing is, therefore, the production of copies of an artistic or scientific work or a visual document. Verb editing indicates publishing a piece through its representation in a physical or digital medium. This 10–13-digit number identifies a specific book, book edition, or book-related product (such as an audiobook). It is also called “edition,” the act by which a work is modified.

What tasks does the revision of the manuscript include?

In summary, the revision of a manuscript is a fundamental part of writing. As explained, it is a complex process involving three activities –detection, diagnosis, and rewriting – that can be performed recursively.

What is the process of organizing time and writing activities called?

Planning (or pre-writing) is an act of reflection before the individual writes the script. Unfortunately, the so-called novice or inexperienced writers often omit it, considering it unnecessary due to the generalized and extended trend.

The book publishing process:

Here, we will deal with an essential topic in book publishing and production, such as the publishing process and the actors involved. Although these phases are not always fulfilled with these actors, we could say that it is a kind of “ideal process” since, in most cases, the same person performs several functions simultaneously.

In any case, the phases are as follows:

  • The author is the first actor that is part of the editing phase. He must present the original document to the editor (publisher). It is extremely important that before sending the document to the publisher, the author thoroughly checks that all the content of the text is correct according to the style guide that the institution follows. The editor should also broadly assess that the script sent has a place within the editorial line since; for example, in the case of a scientific publishing house, if a novel (whatever type it is) enters, it must be rejected.
  • In this way, the table editor receives the original. He must then review it and give the necessary instructions to the proofreader to follow the publisher’s style book. This process is done in Word or another editable format from the document that the author sent in the first instance.
  • The next step is to send the original manuscript to the designer to prepare the interior and cover, and once the text is designed, both the desktop editor and the author must check and review this first design.
  • The author and editor continue to review the text carried out by the proofreader until they reach a consensus and prepare the text from the original for the layout designer, who is given instructions on the optical layout of each element (images, titles, sections, annexes). Years ago, this process was known as “diagramming.”
  • The layout designer prepares the first collated proofs, so a second proofreader must complete an orthotypographical and style correction.
  • Once a second proofreader has reviewed, the text returns to the table editor and author, who review the proofreader’s amendments.
  • With the results generated in the first tests, the layout designer must introduce the corrections of the first collated and generate second tests.
  • From this point on, the editor must check that the model designer has correctly introduced the corrections and will be revised successively until the manuscript is completely correct. Once the manuscript is polished, the designer will have to generate a high-resolution document for publication, either on paper or digital.

Proofreading and editing of e-books:

After spending so many hours creating your work, the last thing you want is for it to need more clarity or impact because it contains writing, spelling, or punctuation errors. Whether you’re writing your first book or a seasoned author, your success will depend on the quality of the content you deliver.

Can you imagine the image you would project if readers perceive something needs to be better written or if they don’t like the wording? Your reputation would be at stake, and the price to recover it will be costly. However, with so much competition, that’s something you should keep from allowing yourself. Therefore, it is best to have the help of professional book proofreading services that review your writing objectively and skillfully. Let them analyze the content from another perspective.

This service includes:

  • Improved sentence and paragraph structure, as well as tone and syntax
  • Correction of spelling, grammar, and punctuation errors, resulting in more coherent content for your readers
  • Restructuring your writing as needed to improve its readability and maximize its impact, ensuring that your readers are captivated by your content
  • If your work is fictional, we will evaluate the characters, the plot, and the dialogues of the book, making the necessary modifications.
  • If it is a non-fiction book, we will evaluate the logic and clarity of the content to improve the overall quality of your writing. Also, insert your book’s table of contents, so each chapter and section are linked and easily located.

Stay true to your writing style and authorial voice with book proofreading services.


There are differences between proofreading, editing, and correcting a text. While the edition entails a deep analysis and contemplates modifications in terms of structure and content, the correction occurs once the text is in a more advanced state. Remember, all phases of proofreading are incredibly significant to guarantee its quality.

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