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Read all the editors' answers to Duotrope's interview question: How much do you edit an accepted piece prior to publication? Learn more.
Here is a small sampling from our recent Editor Interviews. We have interviewed over 1,650 editors.
Q: How much do you edit an accepted piece prior to publication?
A: I usually do only light proofreading, and the author does not approve corrections as they are purely a matter of grammar, spelling, and punctuation. If, however, I change anything substantive, I run it by the author first.
A: Our job is to make writers look good! That said, we try to take a light hand with editing, being attentive to authorial intent and style. Most of the editing we do is copy editing, with some line editing. All edits are sent to the writer for approval before publication.
A: We have never published an article that didn't need a bit of tweaking. Some articles require more extensive editing but most of our writers submit clean work.
A: Substantive editing and line editing are done before the final acceptance. After acceptance we do copy-editing that has to be sanctioned or amended by the author. We help the author with proofreading.
A: We offer editorial suggestions and copy editing, and sometimes proposed changes can seems excessive and intrusive. However, the author does have the opportunity to approve or reject all proposed alterations
A: We are an active editorial team that deeply values the opportunity to elevate the dialogue around the intersection of spirituality and social justice. With the goal of providing thought leadership in this space and creating continuity within each issue, we often provide substantive editing in the first round of review, followed by a thorough copy edit and finalized by approval of the layout proof. Authors approve all edits through the process.
A: We may make minor edits, but generally we appreciate your work they way you want it.
A: We provide line editing, copy editing, and/or basic proofreading as needed. Our authors do receive proofs fro final edits before printing.
A: It depends (obviously). I always do line/copy editing; I've never seen a perfect manuscript. If more revision is required, the author is usually consulted.
A: I try to edit as little as possible. I always query unless the thing I'm editing is an obvious mistake & even then, when I send the author digital proofs, I query: "I saw that you spelled "groceries" incorrectly as "gorceries" & I corrected the spelling. Is that okay? You did mean groceries, correct?"
The author gets to approve all edits that I suggest. I line edit and proofread intensely, so that the printed published is as perfect as it can be.
A: We make small corrections to the text if we are sure that this will not change the way that the author intended the work to be presented. We do not send those changes back to the author. Occasionally when a work is too good to miss but needs more extensive changes we will return this to the author with our suggestions. Then it is up to them whether or not they want to re-submit.
A: First, I take notes while I listen to the submission. If something major stands out to me, I'll ask the author to address it before we secure a contract. Otherwise, I'll send those notes to the author shortly after the contract is secured.
During the first official round of editing, I'll focus mainly on substantive issues but also correct points of grammar that jump out at me. I point out the substantive issues but let the author rewrite those sections.
During the second round of editing, I'll focus mainly on proofreading. If any more substantive issues arise, I'll still point them out and ask the author to highlight any portions of rewritten text so I don't have to go through the whole thing again.
If necessary, I'll do additional rounds of editing, but I'm typically thorough enough to handle it in two rounds.