The Professional Editing Process

Well, I should be done with this round of edits by the time this blog posts. The edits were due yesterday, the second of July. Hoping I’m celebrating right now and not requesting more time.


In my career as an author, I’ve worked with maybe six editors so far (well, more if you count short stories…), and the experience has been fairly similar each time. Let’s take a look at what to expect when you’re expecting a polished manuscript.

The content edit is usually the first round I go through. They pick up major and minor errors that affect the plot, characterization, theme, and they nail me on setting inconsistencies, need for more backstory, etc. In this stage, I might find myself adding sentences and paragraphs or rewriting some totally. Typos are also fair game.

Depending on how well or how poorly I’ve done the content edits, there could be anywhere from one to several more rounds. The names vary, but they tend to zoom in more on grammar and word choice, though I’ve been known to get minor content edits in the second and third rounds. They’ll also do formatting, which I’m not really involved with.

The round I just finished was a copy edit (depending on the publisher, I believe the name is interchangeable with content edit.)

Once all the changes are implemented, I’ve been asking to see the manuscript one final time to check for anything we all missed. Folks have been really good about humoring me in this.

It’s an honor working with some truly talented and insightful people. Don D. of Flame Tree is such an insightful, kind editor. They run a great team there, so I highly recommend you sub your awesome novels to them. Also, I very much recommend you read their books. So much work and talent goes into them, it’s awesome.

Keep your nose in a book,

The Goblets Immortal

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