I have been editing books for 10 years of my life. Many people don’t even understand what editing is, and why it is required.
As song editing and movie editing are a crucial part of the movie-making business, in the same way, book editing is a crucial part of publishing business too.
People often asked me, “What do you do for a living?” and I said, “I am the editor of books.” Hearing this they immediately reacted, “Oh, so you correct the mistakes.” This felt like such a slap on the face. Proofreading is quite an essential part of the book but editing is often ignored or not understood.
When we write a book, an essay, a paragraph, etc. we often think to ourselves, “Has it become lengthy… is the grammar correct…. can the sentences be improved.” Yes, this is where the role of the editor comes into picture. They make your writing look simple yet effective, easy to read, grammatically correct, short but strong, and much more.
The basic requirement for being an editor is to have a love for language. If you have that, you can easily learn to edit books in any language.
If you want to learn editing, here are some simple steps to kick start your journey:
- Read books: For learning editing, you need to read books that are simple yet powerful.
- Learn vocabulary: Vocabulary is a very essential part of editing. If you want your writing to shine, you need to have a good command of vocabulary.
- Write everything: You need to right everything you have in your mind. Put all your thoughts on paper, without thinking of errors.
- Analyze: After writing everything down, analyze your work. Whatever is irrelevant, keep it aside. Focus on the relevant work.
- Categorize: After analyzing your work, categorize it into chapters and put the relevant written material into the specific chapters.
- Now you start the first level of editing each chapter. In this level, you correct the grammatical errors.
- Second level of editing: At this level, you see that your chapter has a flow of your idea, and thought. Excluded everything that hinders the flow of the chapter.
- Third level: Try improvising your language and make your writing look effective without changing its intent.