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Issue 16, 16 July 1999

ISSN 1442-8652
Editor: Jean Hollis Weber

In this issue...

Feature article: Checklist for freelance editors
Resource of the week:
Tip of the week: Ask lots of questions
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Feature article: Checklist for freelance editors

(Note: This checklist is based on guidelines provided by a major commercial publisher for freelance electronic editors preparing material in Microsoft Word, to be imported into Quark Xpress for page layout. Those of us used to editing files to be published in Word will notice considerable differences in the techniques used here, which include stripping out most of the formatting that Word puts in.)

At the beginning of the first document of a book:

(I was interested to note that this technique does not attempt to create a template, but rather makes all the changes to the template.)

The checklist then continues:

When editing:

Resource of the week:

Do you need to use the Internet for research? If you're like me, you know only the rudiments of how to structure a search query and not much about where to look for specialized information.

This site is full of useful tips, and is kept up to date by Tara Calishain, the author of The Official Netscape Guide to Internet Research (now a year old and a bit out of date -- how fast things age on the Internet!) and co-author of Poor Richard's Internet Marketing and Promotions.

If you want current research information, drop by:

Tip of the week: Ask lots of questions

When in doubt, ask. Even if you're not in doubt, it's often best to ask. No question is too stupid. You will definitely look worse if you don't ask and then get something glaringly wrong. Either your mistake will get published, or someone will catch it before publication and waste a lot of time correcting a problem that could have been prevented.

The copyeditors' discussion list is full of great examples of major mistakes by people who thought they knew what they were doing, but didn't. (If you'd like to join the copyeditors' list, see for more information.)

Asking questions starts with making sure you and the client understand and agree on what you're supposed to be doing, and continues with such things as terminology, acronyms, and conventions in spelling and punctuation. It includes issues such as "will the target audience understand this term or concept, or do we need to explain it more fully?"

© Copyright 1999, Jean Hollis Weber. All rights reserved.

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