Every editor and editing company has a process. Too often, ours does not get explained until someone inquires about services. So, I thought it a good idea to write a bit about the three steps you will encounter when you hire Topflight Communication, Inc. to serve your editing needs.
- Content Editing. The first step deals only with content. We call this “book doctoring” because we rewrite, reorder, and reorganize everything from sentences to chapters. We may write additional information for clarity’s sake, or we may delete information to keep your writing concise. Essentially, we take your broken or “sick” manuscript, reset it, and bandage it. It is important for the author to know that we will not move on from this stage without approval to our changes and suggestions, and that there will be mistakes in the manuscript. We are not looking for minute details at this stage.
- Line Editing. After receiving the author’s approval on content edits, we conduct our line editing. This step entails going through the manuscript sentence by sentence and paragraph by paragraph to be sure everything done in content editing (both our changes and the author’s) flows well. We check syntax and grammar and look for any glaring mistakes. When this step is finished, it does not require the author’s approval because it covers all the little things an author would want to change in order to ensure the reader has a pleasant experience. There may still be mistakes after line editing is completed, though a lot of them will be weeded out during this step.
- Fine Editing. This is what many people have come to call proofreading, but proofreading is a completely different step that is done after layout. Fine editing is when we go through the manuscript word-for-word to catch every last grammar and spelling error.
Once these three steps are completed, what happens next is entirely up to the author and the services that were selected.
For example, if the author chooses Topflight Communication, Inc. to design the cover or any interior artwork, it will be started during the editing phases. If the author also asks us to do the interior layout of the book, we will do so after the fine edits are completed. Once layout is completed, the manuscript is proofread to ensure headings are in the right places, that there are no widow and orphan pages, and that the table of contents is correct.
The author then receives a .pdf copy of the manuscript that can be taken to or uploaded to any printer the author chooses. We will work with the author to ensure the measurements of the book (including margins and bleed) will meet the printer’s requirements.
Finally, the manuscript will be uploaded by the author, who will be given a template for the cover by the printer. The author will then upload the cover file we (or another designer) have provided and upload it in a way that matches the printer’s template. We are typically not involved in this process, but if an author needs help with this stage, we are more than happy to do what we can.
There are other steps to writing a book, such as purchasing the ISBNs and barcode and the copyright, but these are not really part of the editing process and can be done at any time, even years before the book is finished. We do walk our authors through this process as well, if needed, helping them purchase and then properly register the ISBN.
All of our services are listed here. If you would like to discuss your particular editing, writing, or publishing needs, please contact us by phone or by e-mail. We would be happy to serve you in any way.