Let’s face it: spell-check can only take you so far, and what it doesn’t catch (read: a lot) can leave you exposed to bad reviews and agent rejections. To present a polished, professional text, copyediting is an absolute must. Especially if you’re planning to self-publish, this is one step you can’t do without.

A copyedit is a line-by-line approach that zeroes in on the three Cs: correctness, clarity, and consistency. We dig deep into mechanics like spelling, punctuation, syntax, and grammar, but preserve your voice and style. After all, what else makes your book uniquely yours?

For most books, we use the Chicago Manual of Style and Merriam-Webster. We edit in Word using track changes and prepare a style sheet, which outlines how we’ve established consistency in your book. Ask us to send you a sample.

What we do:

• Catch spelling and punctuation errors

• Correct grammar and syntax issues

• Create consistency in how numerals are used

• Improve word choice and eliminate redundancy

• Ensure names and proper nouns are spelled consistently

• Lightly fact-check and query potential errors or timeline issues

• Confirm that your table of contents matches your chapter titles

Ours is a two-step process. After the initial copyedit, you have a chance to review the text and style sheet. Then we perform cleanup by streamlining the edits and ensuring that all queries have been addressed, so that the final manuscript we deliver to you is redline-free and ready for proofreading.

Looking for an approach that gives your language a little more TLC? Look to a line edit.

Time frame: 3-4 weeks