Questions tagged [editing]

Editing is the act of improving a piece of writing. Questions with this tag should focus on specific editing techniques or ways to improve editing skills. Critiques or proofreading questions are off-topic here.

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Should a phrase be repeated in one sentence for clarity?

In my dissertation, we analyze three types of data: (1) high contrast, (2) low contrast, and (3) zero contrast. Would it be grammatically correct to say "high, low, and zero contrast" or ...
user62114's user avatar
1 vote
1 answer
110 views

What is meant by deleting the last thing you wrote?

One writing tip I saw was, cutting the last thing you wrote because often it is unimportant, but I think I need a little more direction in what way I should do it.
Pia Moss's user avatar
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0 answers
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Comma placement in form "this occurs...this is what results"

This paradox results from a psychological alliance that forms between captor and captive leading to emotional bonding that is hard to break. My knee-jerk instinct is to add a comma after "...
Eddie Cruz's user avatar
0 votes
2 answers
90 views

How exactly are you supposed to write a paragraph that contains a consistent theme throughout?

I have noticed as a writer that one of my greatest weaknesses is writing paragraphs. I never really learned exactly how a paragraph is supposed to support one single theme. For instance, this is a ...
SmartBulbInc's user avatar
0 votes
1 answer
53 views

Approach to handle editorial oversights to new annotated edition of older work

Long preparing a new annotated edition of a well-known 20th-century architect's most significant publication, originally published in the mid-1950s, for republication in collaboration with the ...
Typothalamus's user avatar
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1 answer
62 views

Is a grammatically truncated style for editor annotations to a volume allowed?

For a new edition of a 1953 book on architectural theory and history, we've made many annotations in the form of editor side notes alongside the main text, rather than as footnotes. The question ...
Typothalamus's user avatar
5 votes
3 answers
177 views

How Do I Overcome Writing "Scrupulosity" When Editing?

When writing, I notice that I have this tendency where everything has to be 100% perfect. At first, I thought that this was no big deal and just a desire for perfection. However, today, while writing, ...
SmartBulbInc's user avatar
2 votes
1 answer
108 views

Seeking advice on safeguarding my manuscript

I'm an Australian writer who is contemplating sending my manuscript to a novel editor in America. I'm concerned about the possibility of my work being claimed by someone else. Given my limited ...
Nuada Airgetlám's user avatar
-1 votes
1 answer
51 views

Should this sentence use "might be" or "might have been"?

I am writing about a woman who has found an anonymous parcel on her desk, and she is talking to her colleague to find out who might have sent it... The novel is written in past tense, and I am not ...
Jurij's user avatar
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1 vote
2 answers
163 views

I am seeking for a partner to finish a fictional story. Where can I find somebody to work with me?

I have written a fictional novel of about 40,000 words with a very bad translation to English. I need someone to expand it with 30,000 more words to reach 70,000 and become a partner with me for ...
William Wood's user avatar
0 votes
1 answer
86 views

What is the editing process for fantasy romance?

I currently trying to edit my first book, draft 1. It all feels overwhelming after I've written the notecards, replanned it a little to meet the change of plot line, and it all seems to not work like ...
Susanna's user avatar
3 votes
1 answer
172 views

How to fill Major Gaps in a Plot

As stated in previous questions, I am still in the Skeleton Stage of planning. I have a fairly developed first few chapter as well as a few key scenes much further along in the book (not that I'm ...
BubbleQueen's user avatar
8 votes
4 answers
4k views

I can't afford an editor because my book is too long! What should I do?

Like most of us, I hope to one day have a book published by a major publishing house. My current work-in-progress, Borradh, is far larger than anticipated. At the moment, it's about 129,000 words, ...
Nuada Airgetlám's user avatar
1 vote
3 answers
101 views

is "next evolution" redundant?

Does saying "next evolution" sound redundant? Isn't evolution already something that comes next? I'm editing an article and the author talks about the "next evolution" of a theory,...
Ira's user avatar
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1 vote
2 answers
76 views

Unpublished manuscript

I found some stories my mother wrote and they were never published. She is deceased. I know I can send them in but can I edit them before I do? She wrote them in the 1960s on a manual typewriter and ...
Elizabeth's user avatar
1 vote
3 answers
132 views

How do I know who to trust as I start producing a book?

I am writing a book at age 10-11, by myself. I have some people like my teacher and parents helping to edit, but I don't have anyone I can trust to help me (without screwing it up). I also don't know ...
user avatar
1 vote
5 answers
171 views

Combatting crippling perfectionism

I am attempting to begin writing a Substack newsletter, but I have hit a serious problem: I am a chronic, crippled perfectionist. I can't get through a sentence of any given post without freezing up ...
Duel's user avatar
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-1 votes
1 answer
98 views

How do I fix "when" at the beginning of a sentence?

I was editing an essay and the sentence checker said, " 'when' at the beginning of a sentence usually requires a 2nd clause." I followed some of suggestions it made and it said it was ...
師ちゃまらのら's user avatar
16 votes
4 answers
5k views

Is omniscient observer POV really dead?

I am in the midst of reworking my latest manuscript into a shape that someone might be inclined to publish. To help me along I hired a professional editor and writer, whose comments and suggestions, ...
Candon's user avatar
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14 votes
8 answers
3k views

Why can I not self-reflect on my own writing critically? How can I self-edit?

When an editor goes over my writing, even if most of their feedback is Writing 101 advice, it's still super helpful because my writing has a lot of flaws. But I never notice these flaws (big picture ...
Jack Pan's user avatar
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1 vote
2 answers
82 views

Searching for a word in sentence ending in a question

I would like to search for words in a sentence that ends with a question mark - ? For example I have a pdf document or a word document with the following sentence: Which of the following describes a ...
Patterson's user avatar
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2 votes
3 answers
191 views

How to identify your own so-called "darlings"?

tl;dr; It recently occurred to me that I don't have a good smoke test for identifying those passages we might call "darlings". It can be hard enough to cull even the obvious darlings, but it ...
elrobis's user avatar
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6 votes
2 answers
271 views

For people of color, are there unique ways to describe emotional state through skin tone, besides 'going pale,' 'turning red,' 'looking green,' etc?

Are there some words or phrases to describe a person of color, specifically darker colors, when their skin tone changes with emotion? Like for a white person, they'd turn pale when scared or turn red ...
DarkDragonLady's user avatar
0 votes
0 answers
142 views

Is there a keyboard shortcut in Final Draft to change an element into a dialogue?

In Final Draft, when I paste in text into the editor, it defaults to an action. If I select the text or put my cursor on a spot in the text, I can go to the menu and choose "Format > Change ...
1.21 gigawatts's user avatar
1 vote
1 answer
65 views

What do I call an introductory section written by myself (not the author)

I am putting together an electronic version of a book written by my grandfather about his service in the middle east in WW1. The other grandchildren and I have transcribed the text from scanned ...
rossmcm's user avatar
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-3 votes
1 answer
80 views

What is the best way to reword the following sentence [closed]

The sentence is: They reinforce how African-Americans used art, music, and literature to help shape their cultural identity. This sentence is explaining how the inclusion of details about Harlem ...
Honey Boochie Bun's user avatar
2 votes
1 answer
71 views

Asking editors to elaborate on their response

Do let me know if this is off-topic. My question relates to the publishing process, and the typical ramifications of an possible action could have on one's future ability to be published. Getting ...
user110391's user avatar
0 votes
3 answers
76 views

Question about present tense writing, and use of the words: have, and think

I am just beginning to get serious about the way I write, furthermore I’m a very cautious writer so I would just like to know if these simple paragraphs are correct. I am trying to clarify both my use ...
Courtney's user avatar
1 vote
2 answers
125 views

What to expect from the editing process

So I finished my very first novel and decided that I want to get an editor for the manuscript. I found someone offering their services online through a trusted platform and contacted them but now I'm ...
Malek's user avatar
  • 13
0 votes
1 answer
36 views

How do I frame this question?

I'm writing a script and there's a question I want one character to ask another but for nearly a month, I just can't construct the question even though I know what I want to ask. Basically, I want to ...
Nass King's user avatar
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1 vote
2 answers
91 views

Do you have to hire an editor to see if your novel is appropriate for an age group?

Do you have to hire an editor to see if your novel is appropriate for an age group? Because people nowadays self publish a lot, I was wondering how you would verify that your novel is appropriate for ...
Sayaman's user avatar
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0 votes
4 answers
118 views

Is there a resource (website, book, etc.) to learn the basics of novel/story grammar?

I'm interested in learning to write as someone that has been a reader my whole life. I'm aware there are many website for tips like "every time a different character speaks, start a new line"...
Dave's user avatar
  • 11
2 votes
3 answers
220 views

How to Write a Temporary 'Goodbye" [closed]

I'm working on my first novel, and my main character is going on a 'no contact' vacation where she doesn't communicate with anyone in her life. I'm struggling to figure out how to write it even though ...
Gray Hazel's user avatar
-1 votes
2 answers
95 views

Would an editor for major publisher suggest that a novel have more "diverse" characters? [closed]

It just seems to me that for some novels -- especially those published in the last ten years or so -- that the author goes out of their way to make a point that a character is Asian, or black, or ...
YWE's user avatar
  • 107
3 votes
0 answers
640 views

Scrivener, footnotes are missing/misformated when compiling to PDF (Windows 3; V3.0)

I'm creating a novel in Scrivener 3.0 that makes heavy use of footnotes. In recent compile tests on a chapter, I'm finding that on one page the footnotes are being displayed laid on top of the text at ...
Sam Nash's user avatar
9 votes
3 answers
2k views

"Lack of [plural]": should accompanying verb be singular or plural?

In this sentence: It’s not our lack of answers to these problems that causes us such pain. My word processor tells me that "causes" should be in the plural form "cause", but I'm ...
Brian Sachetta's user avatar
-1 votes
1 answer
45 views

Best method to separate complex/multiple nouns and the verb? Semi-colon?

Would a semi-colon be appropriate separating a list of nouns all affected by a verb/or are all the agents responsible for said action? If not what do you all suggest without altering the structure of ...
CEwritproc's user avatar
0 votes
1 answer
124 views

Are Certain Religious Terms Capitalized?

Is the term, "the great falling away" directly from the Bible, capitalized when used in a sentence to emphasize its importance? Also, the term "last days" is in question.
Suzette's user avatar
3 votes
3 answers
162 views

After editing a chapter, the whole story changes?

I created my story last year in the nanowrimo challenge, and I finished the whole thing, I was quite happy even if it was a mess. Then I tried to edit it to give it a little more clarity and fixing ...
Dirak's user avatar
  • 31
2 votes
2 answers
412 views

Are "floating quotations" to be avoided in academic writing?

I am finishing my dissertation, and my advisor was highly critical of my use of "floating quotations" or "stand-alone quotations." She directed me to a University of North Carolina ...
Lee's user avatar
  • 21
2 votes
0 answers
42 views

Would the term 'blue collar worker' be understood by a global audience? [closed]

Would the term 'blue collar worker' be understood by a global audience, for example in India, China, Japan?
YGraves's user avatar
  • 21
1 vote
0 answers
56 views

How do you format a song when it's part of a larger spoken piece?

I'm editing a children's book which includes songs. I usually format the songs as a block quote in a slightly smaller type size and centred on the longest line. However, I've just come to a song that ...
Daniel James Smith's user avatar
0 votes
1 answer
674 views

City of [city name] or [city name] city?

I’m wondering what is more appropriate when referring to a city, let’s say Damascus for example. Is it better to say “city of Damascus” or “Damascus city”? Or are they both interchangeable. I know for ...
Solaire's user avatar
5 votes
3 answers
125 views

Where should I look for editing and publishing?

I have finally finished my first book, but I'm not quite sure where to look for editing or publishing. I'm interested in traditional publishing, but from what I've heard and read, I need an agency for ...
Lele's user avatar
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1 vote
1 answer
74 views

Editing question for novel, about indentation, double spacing and page size

I'm getting close to finishing a novel and looking through online guides for the formatting process. From what I've seen, everyone is strongly recommending double spacing and an indentation of .5inch/...
Bob's user avatar
  • 13
0 votes
3 answers
3k views

Alternative words for genitalia

I am editing a piece of writing for my English-speaking friends from a rough translation. I need softer words to replace "vagina", "penis", "breasts" etc. I have used ...
Alia-ndro's user avatar
5 votes
4 answers
226 views

Is it possible to teach yourself how to line-edit and copy-edit your own writing?

Is it possible to teach yourself how to line edit and copy edit if you are the writer? I read others work, but the styles of a writer can be confusing. I need to learn how to edit to be a good writer.
Anita's user avatar
  • 51
1 vote
0 answers
37 views

Should I use a comma or a colon? [closed]

I am a bit confused as to whether I should use a comma or a colon for the following sentence: Art quickly became a world where I could trust my abilities, a world where I can share my emotions and ...
Darien's user avatar
  • 11
6 votes
7 answers
2k views

How late in the book editing process can you change a character’s name?

I am on the last edit before I send my book to beta readers for the first time, and I'm not sold on two of my characters names since they sound similar. One is Zeidric, with the "ei" ...
AnnWriter19's user avatar
  • 1,551
0 votes
2 answers
72 views

How should I format chapters in my manuscript?

I'm in my final stages of editing before I send my manuscript to beta readers. I'm wondering how I should format chapter titles. Do I put them as a header, or as a slightly larger, bolder font? (This ...
AnnWriter19's user avatar
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