My clients are students, educators (lecturers or professors), self-publishers or professionals and I love working such a range of people from different industries.

I’ve found though, that it doesn’t matter whether my client has an ebook, a novel, a short story, a manuscript, an assignment, a PhD, a thesis, a PowerPoint presentation or some professional correspondence that need reviewing – the number one question I am contacted about is this: what do I need to do to make my document ready for copy editing and/or proofreading?

Of course the answer is different for each client and their copy; but at the end of the day it’s about saving my clients time and money.

So here are two essential proofreading and editing tips guaranteed to do just that.

Proofreading and editing tip #1: Format your document

When your final draft of your content is ready to go, consider making these formatting changes (it will save me time and you money when it comes to the copy editing and proofreading stages):

  • Send us your document in Word – this will allow marked up and tracked changes along with comments in the margin
  • Set your page size to A4
  • Align your paragraphs to the left
  • Set your line spaces to 1.5
  • Single space only after a full stop
  • No coloured text
  • No underline
  • Only use one exclamation point

If you are preparing a scholarly document then I will follow your university style guide to ensure all formatting is accurate. This will include formatting headings, a table of contents and references. We can discuss creating a template to help make your document easier to review.

Proofreading and editing tips #2: Write consistently

As a copy editor and proofreader, consistency is key. This means literally that, be consistent. If your mistakes are consistent, they will be far easier to find and fix! Be consistent in your use of:

  • Spelling – use Australian or American, not a mixture of both
  • Punctuation – use a comma, full-stop, semi-colon or none of these at the end of your sentences, just be consistent
  • Grammar – passive tone for scholarly and bureaucratic documents and active tone for most other texts

We aim to provide professional proofreading and copy editing services that reduce your anxieties as your due date looms. Of course, anything we can do to help save you time and money, we will most certainly aim to do!