Since editors, publishers, reference books, and schools use these terms inconsistently, here’s a breakdown.
Copyediting and Proofreading
Copyediting and proofreading deal with language — not with content. These services correct the language while preserving the meaning and voice of the original text. They are a package deal from My Two Cents Editing, and every manuscript gets two passes: the first pass by a senior editor, the second by an eagle-eyed proofreader.
- Correct mechanics: spelling, grammar, punctuation, syntax, word usage
- Impose a consistent style (we default to the Chicago Manual of Style): treatment of numbers and numerals, quotations, abbreviations, acronyms, italics, bold type
Line Editing or Substantive Editing
Line editing, also called substantive editing, is deep copyediting. Like copyediting and proofreading, line editing deals with language, but it also addresses issues of clarity, accuracy, and sense.
Line Editing Tasks
- Work with structure at the paragraph, section, or chapter level to improve clarity
- Improve readability and flow by writing, rewriting, or deleting material
Interested in learning why we make the choices we do? Want to know how to edit your own work more effectively and efficiently? A few editing lessons will help you streamline your process and deepen your understanding of your craft.
- One-on-one sessions focusing on grammar, mechanics, clarity, and flow
- Exchange of material by email plus consultations by phone and email to guide you through polishing your own manuscript
Meet Our Copy Chief, Rhonda Erb
Rhonda Erb is a writer, editor, and voracious reader who brings decades of experience to her role as Copy Chief at My Two Cents Editing.
Rhonda has executed eagle-eyed copyediting and proofreading for My Two Cents since 2014. Her discerning eye and dauntless pursuit of clear, concise, correct copy make her an invaluable editor and an incomparable wingwoman for authors and editors alike.
Rhonda earned a reputation for excellent feedback while beta reading for renowned indie author Pamela Fagan Hutchins. She soon aced a professional copyediting class and sought a mentorship with Meghan Pinson. She quickly became Meghan’s secret weapon, and Rhonda and Meghan have collaborated closely on dozens of manuscripts over the years.
As Copy Chief, Rhonda is My Two Cents Editing’s highest-ranking copy editor.