What’s the difference between proofreading and copy editing?
We sure are glad you asked. Take a look at the picture here – something a devout proofreader should always carry with them. Proofreading is the practice of checking for errors, be they in spelling, grammar or punctuation.
Copy editing takes this one step further and checks for stylistic inconsistencies, making sure you’ve hit the nail on the head with the tone. Some say that a copy editor improves the proofreader’s work, while others will say it’s on the proofreader to look for anything the copy editor let slip through the net.
A copy editor might adhere to a ‘house style’. These are conventions that publications have to follow – stylistic variables that may not necessarily be right or wrong. For example, some publications might always want to capitalise job titles. Some might only do this when introducing a person. Whatever the choice, a copy editor’s job is to make sure this is consistent.
How do you charge for proofreading?
Unlike copywriting, proofreading is often charged by the word. (It’s frowned upon in copywriting circles – after all, shorter copy takes longer.)
That said, we like to charge for the time it takes – simply because some people aren’t sure if they need copy editing, proofreading or a bit of both. We’ll give you an estimate based on document length and let you know if it changes once we’ve got stuck in.
How do your proofreading services work?
When you ask for a quote, we’ll ask you what your aims are: to get rid of errors, check the tone or optimise for SEO. (It can also be all three.) We’ll then ask you to send the final version of your document and we’ll track changes, letting you know why we’ve done anything that may be ambiguous.
Any house style or other reference documents you may have are always appreciated. Then it’s back to you for one final check and huzzah!
Quoted by the hour based on text length.
As accredited by the NCTJ.
Consistency and clarity
Banish the errors and nail the tone.