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What Editors Do

What editors do

Often people don’t know what editors do so they don’t understand the benefits of hiring a good one. This is largely because editors work behind the scenes of a written work. You don’t see our hand in the piece if we’ve done a good job.

Editors provide a wide variety of services depending on the needs of the writer and the requirements of the work.

Here are just a few things an editor can do for you:
  • Adapting/repurposing content
  • Clarifying your audience and their needs
  • Reviewing or creating correspondence
  • Preliminary development of academic or research projects
  • Desktop publishing and document design
  • Formatting content for optimal delivery of your message
  • Fact checking
  • Eliminating bias in gender and ethnicity
  • Writing grant proposals
  • Indexing
  • Evaluating manuscripts for content, structure and style, and potential market value.
  • Online editing including web page evaluation, editing and writing
  • Finding suitable visuals, photographs, reproductions and illustrations
  • Editing for plain language
  • Project management
  • Research
  • Rewriting or ghostwriting; creating new work based on existing text
  • Designing templates or document standards
  • Creating style guides to ensure that words, phrases and terms are used consistently
  • Evaluating, editing and writing/rewriting web content
  • Web content design/information architecture
  • Providing advice on publishing options
  • Connecting you with appropriate designers for book covers and other graphical elements

Why Hire an Editor?

red pen

Too often an unedited work is confusing, disjointed and long-winded, and requires a great deal of mental effort to understand.

This defeats the purpose of written communication and is easily remedied by utilizing the skills of a good editor.

A well-edited work is also free of grammar and spelling errors, has appropriate punctuation and contains smooth, coherent and concise text that is easy to read and understand.

Editors help writers look good by ensuring their writing is clean, clear and appropriate for the intended audience, the purpose of the piece and the format of its delivery.

Different Types of Editing

There are different types of editing required in each situation.

If the writer is experienced and skilled at editing themselves, or if the piece is in its final stage of editing, then a basic copyedit may be appropriate. Many experienced writers prefer to have a different set of eyes review their final drafts.

If, on the hand, the writer is less experienced, or in the early stages of the work, or if they prefer to focus on content and leave the details to an editor, then a more substantial edit may be required.

Here’s a list of the common types of editing:

  • Structural Editing – provides feedback and suggestions about how the content is organized. It looks at the entire structure or format; beginning, ending, flow, effective use of headings, lists, tables etc. It can also include how accessible the information is to the intended audience, and if there are any legal or ethical issues.
  • Stylistic Editing – clarifies meaning, eliminates jargon and smoothes language. This level of edit will also check for and correct the reading level or make suggestions for more inclusive language.
  • Basic Copyediting – checks grammar, spelling, punctuation and word usage. (Often this is all that is needed for seasoned writers, or in the final editing stages.)
  • Proofreading – provides the final check for errors before an edited, formatted document goes to print. Its purpose is to catch any errors and omissions made in the copy editing or design process.

Successful writers know the value of a good content editor and wouldn’t be without one.

Our Specialties

Outside the Lines offers a full slate of writing and editing services, and we specialize in the following:

  • web content (writing, editing, repurposing)
  • ghost writing/rewriting in any genre
  • self publishing projects (planning & implementation)
  • communications planning
  • content marketing strategies
Are you looking for help with your writing?

Learn more about how we estimate our editing jobs.

Contact us to schedule a free consultation.