Proofreading vs Editing
No, it’s not a writing smackdown, but two different parts of the writing process that go hand-in-hand. Since the proof team is working in overdrive at the moment, I thought it would be a good time to rehash the role we play and the difference between a proofread and an edit.
Editing is an in-depth process that looks at all aspects of the story. So in addition to punctuation, spelling, grammar, language-usage, and the technical aspects of writing, a good edit includes looking at continuity errors, plausibility, author voice, and the overall story arc. It can be a lengthy process, depending on the editor, author, and amount of revision needed.
Proofreading is the final step before the story goes live. So once an author’s editing and beta reading team have dissected the story and the author has put it back together, then it’s always a good idea to give the story a final proofread to catch anything that might have been missed. When the proof team completes a proof on an anthology story, we are looking for spelling errors, misused words, incorrect grammar, and punctuation. Even the best editors sometimes miss things, so our job is to catch those mistakes and make the story as clean as possible.
There’s a great discussion going on right now in the Anthology Discussion Thread in the Writer’s Club about editing experiences, scary or otherwise. I’ve received some memorable comments from editors, and one of the most memorable was when I was told to “Get your head out of your ass, stop writing like Jane Austen, and start writing like Valkyrie again!”. Let’s hear your most memorable comments from your editors.
Finally, I’d like to re-feature a blog post about the proof team members. It’s a sometimes thankless job, but we have a wonderful team who work hard behind the scenes to make the anthologies the best they can be. I’d like to extend a special thank you to @cia for stepping in and helping out this year. Another great reason to participate in the anthology is the possibility of having GA's editing guru herself take a look at your work. It's a learning opportunity to definitely take advantage of. We’ve received a lot of stories so far, and I hope they keep coming in! Let’s get to that twenty mark I set earlier!