Editing

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Misplaced Modifiers: How to Find Them and How to Lose Them

Editing

    Remember Groucho Marx's famous quip? "One morning I shot an elephant in my pyjamas. How he got into my pyjamas I'll never know. " What makes this joke work is, of course, the misplaced modifier "in my pyjamas. " But what if Groucho hadn't added that second sentence? Would you have noticed a problem?    What Are Misplaced Modifiers? Put simply, misplaced modifiers are words, phrases, or clauses separated from...

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A Little Bit of Editing, A Little Bit of Proofreading, A Little Bit of Formatting: The Final Steps in Polishing Your Dissertation

Editing

TEC has had a number of dissertations cross our desks over the past few months, and working on these important documents is always a process that requires a lot of attention and an eye for detail. We take editing dissertations (and theses as well) very seriously: when we work on such a document, we know the work we do can have huge impact on our client's life. We...

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The Value of Having Your Thesis or Dissertation Edited by a Professional Editor

Editing

  Having your thesis or dissertation edited by a professional editor can be an incredibly valuable investment. After all, a graduate degree is typically a once-in-a-lifetime venture, and is meant to be foundational to your future career. A professional editor is paid to spend substantial amounts of time and energy (something even the best supervisors don't have a lot of) reading your work and providing thorough editorial feedback on...

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Have Questions? Book a 15-Minute Complimentary Consult with Our Senior Editor

Editing

  We at TEC welcome phone calls from our potential clients looking for guidance about the editing process and the cost of editing. When we receive calls during our business hours (10 to 6, Monday to Friday), we try to provide as much information as possible but do not always have the time for a long conversation. Unfortunately, if the office is busy, we may have to keep the...

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Tidying-Up Your Academic Writing: The Magic of the Reverse Outline

Editing

Could your academic writing use a good de-cluttering?   While doing structural editing for a client—especially with graduate students’ theses or dissertations—I’ve often found myself using the same little trick when faced with overwhelming walls of meandering academic text. Essentially, this trick involves using MS Word’s comments feature to reduce these huge swathes of text into tiny, bite-sized tags, and then dealing exclusively with these tags, rather than the text...

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10 Steps for “Working” Your Manuscript

Editing

  What does it mean when we say an author is "working" the manuscript? It means that we recognize that the author is making the time to rewrite, revise, and reshape the manuscript as often as needed to make it ready for publication. We have the pleasure of working with many authors who seem to know instinctively how to go about doing this, and to watch them at work is...

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An Editor Contemplates Holiday Overindulgences

Editing

The holiday season is like a mercifully distant relative who visits only once a year; I am always glad to see her arrive and always gladder to see her go. Now she is indeed gone, leaving behind bloated waistlines, glassy eyes, and pounding heads. And about time, I say. Good riddance to archaic holiday language until next year. How do you troll a Yuletide carol anyway?...

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3 Essentials for a Great Thesis or Dissertation

Editing / Style

As one of our Academic Editors here at TEC, I've recently been working on a lot of graduate theses and dissertations, helping students to shape what they've written into something they're proud to defend. Having just defended by own PhD dissertation earlier this year, I have a good idea of what graduate supervisors and committees are looking for in a finished dissertation (in the humanities and social sciences, at...

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3 Ways Editors Can Keep Current

Editing / Grammar

At this year's EAC conference, a major theme was professional development and keeping up-to-date. Just as a physicist must keep abreast of advances and innovations in her field, so too must the editor keep up with the constant evolution of language. As keynote speaker Carol Fisher Saller pointed out, you may have learned to never split infinitives (see what I did there?), but that was twenty years ago....

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Editors Go Global: Inspiration at the Keynote Address

Editing / Usage

Last week was a very exciting event for editors in Canada (and around the world)--the 2015 EAC International Conference, "Editing Goes Global," was held in Toronto. Organized and hosted by the Editors' Association of Canada, this  was the first-ever global conference of editors, and obviously TEC staff jumped at the chance to attend! There were so many great seminars, it was hard to choose which to sit in on,...

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Ask the Editor: How Do I Prepare for My First Meeting with An Editor?

Editing / Editor/writer

  In the last “Ask the Editor” blog, I talked about bringing an editor on board before you’ve even started writing the book, and I pointed out how using your editor in this way can help make your book better from the first word you write. If that struck a chord with you, read on!    This week, I’ll be talking about how you, as an author, can prepare for your first...

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Ask the Editor: Why Work with an Editor during the Writing Process?

Editing / Editor/writer

So, you want to write a book. You’ve got the idea in your head, and a vague plan of how to move forward. But how do you get started? Finding an Editor to Write With Many authors seek out an editor before they have even started writing their book. The reasoning is that an editor can help you as you move through the writing process: she/he will keep you accountable, provide real...

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Editing & Hyphens: Tips on Hyphenating Your Writing

Editing / Usage

They say that an ounce of prevention is worth a pound of cure. So when I recently came upon a text riddled with hyphens popped in willy-nilly where they didn't belong, I felt a bit sad (moderating my emotions in accordance with John Benbow's words of advice: "If you take hyphens seriously, you will surely go mad"). If only the author had known the basics of hyphenation! Sure, we all know the overarching rule: hyphens...

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First Things First: Building a Good Author-Editor Relationship

Editing / Editor/writer

Recently, we posted our second eBook publication, The Author's Guide to the Pre-Publishing Editing Process. In this blog and a few to follow, we want to offer a few insights that are included in the guide. Insights that can help you work your way through the editing process. You can download the full Guide here.   Keeping Control of Your Work during the Editorial Process When an author is...

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5 Chicago-Style Citations for the Web-Savvy Editor

Editing / Style

As 2015 rolls around, our use of social media continues to grow. Now, more than ever before, authors (both academic and non-academic) are citing social media sources such as Twitter posts, blog comments, podcasts, and YouTube videos in their work.     The Chicago Manual of Style (CMS) is particularly vague on how to format these modern kinds of citations as endnotes or footnotes. Luckily for you, we’ve done the...

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Perfection: A Perfect Trap

Editing / Editor/writer

Here at The Editing Company, we occasionally have to answer a familiar question from an inquiring caller: “How can you guarantee perfection?” This is an excellent question, and one I’d like to take a few minutes to discuss.     How Can We Guarantee Perfection? Well, the short answer is that perfection cannot be guaranteed—a fact that holds true for pretty much every other profession out there (and life in general, actually). ...

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What Is Copy Editing, Really?

Editing / Editor/writer

  Editing. It sounds like a simple process, but what many people don’t realize is there are actually a few types of editing that aim to accomplish different things. The different levels involved are: copy editing, stylistic editing, and more in-depth substantive editing. You may not always need every level of editing on your work, but the one that is needed most often is copy editing. But what is...

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Back to the Future II: A 1990s Technological Overview

Editing

Leafing through past issues of The Editorial Eye, I am offered a glimpse of what it might have been like to be an editor in the 1990s. These issues feature regular columns with titles like “Software FYI” and “Untangling the Web. ” They are full of reviews of grammar-checking software like Grammatik and CorrecText—even Strunk and White’s electronic version of the Elements of Style—as well as recommendations for search...

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Back to the Future: Tips for Editors from The Editorial Eye (January 1990)

Editing

The Editorial Eye was a professional newsletter for editors and writers published by the Editorial Experts, Inc. in Alexandria, Virginia. I began subscribing to the newsletter in 1990 when I launched my editing career. Topics covered in each of the issues ranged from copy editing to proofreading to substantive editing to newsletter design to technological developments. There were grammar tips and grammar glitches, book reviews and word...

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Adapt and Flourish: The Editors’ Association of Canada Hosts a Milestone Conference

Editing

“Tracking Change: e-Merging Methods and Markets” was the theme of the Editors’ Association of Canada Conference held in Toronto this past June. Well over 200 delegates from across the country attended informative sessions, panels, and workshops on topics pertinent to navigating the changing publishing landscape.   The key message: adapt and flourish. Learn the new technologies, explore new ways of doing things, and build a strategy. In case...

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4 Surprising Side Effects of Being an Editor

Editing

So, you’ve decided you want to be an editor. You love books, working with words, and maybe even enjoy all the grammar rules that might drive other people insane. You have visions of working on beautiful manuscripts, possibly while sitting in front of a fire, or at a great big desk stacked with books. I know you’ve had these visions, because I had them too.   Working...

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Editing as a Conversation with Authors

Editing

In the world of editing, the exchange between authors and editors is a conversation, not in spoken words but in written words. It takes place through the editing process when a manuscript exchanges hands at least twice between the editor and the author. It is a conversation that teaches both the editor and the author. The editor learns about the author’s subject, and the author learns how...

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Punctuation Marks & Symbols: The Comma and the Hashtag

Editing / Style

I wanted to write about punctuation marks and symbols because I’m fascinated by their use. When used correctly — that is, according to style guides like Chicago or APA — they can turn an otherwise awkward or convoluted sentence into a concise, clean line that brings out meaning and strengthens tone (among other things). The Comma One of my favourite examples of how a tiny punctuation mark can bring...

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6 Simple Steps to Becoming a Confident Abbreviation User (CAU)

Editing / Style

From the Jersey Shore (anyone up for GTL?) to high government offices (the GOP signed an MOA with the DED!), abbreviations are handy little tools that save space and time. But they can trip up even experienced writers. When to use them? When not to use them? Capitals or lowercase?   More like ACK!ronym, am I right? Take a deep breath and follow these six simple rules for abbreviating,...

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