In search of the perfect edit

When you pay for editing, shouldn’t you expect a perfect manuscript? In her blog post “Why Did the Editor Miss Errors in Your Book?” developmental editor Lisa Poisso notes that the accuracy of professional editors is generally quite high. Being human, though, any editor can miss something. Experienced editors agree It’s fair to expect a copyeditor—those of us who focus on errors of punctuation, grammar, syntax, word choice, lack of clarity and more—to catch at least 95% of the errors in a manuscript. Copyeditors worth their salt strive for perfection although, being mere mortals, we may have to live with Read More


Indexers rock!

Ever since studying indexing as a graduate student, I’ve been convinced of the value a well-designed index adds to a nonfiction book. As a librarian, I used indexes to help researchers quickly and easily find the information they needed. An index is more than a concordance, which simply lists all the words in a book. An index organizes all the terms and topics covered by a book and provides the reference to each entry. It brings together related ideas and points readers to information they may have missed. My appreciation of indexing was renewed recently when reading April Michelle Davis’s Read More



Kidult and Prepone

One of the pleasures of editing is the opportunity to learn something new. Today’s editing work introduced me to two new words: kidult and prepone. Neither was to be found in my trusty Merriam-Webster Collegiate Dictionary (11th edition) but both words are useful. Kidult refers to an adult who is interested in youth culture or who engages in activities that are more commonly associated with children. The word is a portmanteau of “kid” and “adult.” You may already know that a portmanteau—a lovely term that is in my dictionary—means a word formed by blending two or more distinct words. It Read More


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