Q: What are the benefits/differences between self-editing and working with an editor? How do you find a good editor?
A: (Rebecca Matter) Even the best, most experienced writers benefit from using a good editor, though the type of editor may vary.
For example, a proofreader is usually someone who goes through your copy and corrects grammar and spelling errors. A copy editor takes that one step further and also watches for errors in logic and clarity.
A good Internet search is a reliable way to find a good editor to proof your work, but make sure to use keywords such as “copy editor for health copy” or “direct mail,” depending on the type of writing you do.
Also, asking for referrals from writers you know through the Barefoot Writer network is a great way to meet talented and reliable freelancers.
If you’re not at a point where you can afford the help of a copy editor or proofreader, I recommend asking a friend or family member to take a look at your copy. And if that’s not possible, try reading your copy out loud.
First, read it the whole way through as your prospect would read it. And preferably, read it out loud. Then read it from the bottom up, starting with the last sentence and going up from there. Reading your lines out of order helps you spot errors you might otherwise miss when you read it from the top down.