Helping clients understand the reason for editorial amendments

Posted by on May 7, 2018 in Blog | No Comments
Helping clients understand the reason for editorial amendments

Clients hire copy-editors to be pedantic.


Each publishing house has its style guide, but what about those instances when a client ignores or disagrees with your copy-editing knowledge?


It is better to avoid saying you’re more experienced; instead, show where your experience lies. You could point to your testimonials, to previous assignments, or to previous or current clients when they are well known, but in my opinion, giving specific examples of errors you have found and changed is more beneficial to the client.


Point out that even if the document uses s in organisation, it is correct to use z in World Health Organization, for example.


That words can be superfluous:

  • XXX is working with a number of stakeholders across the international community around the world
  • The transformation will be unlike anything humankind has experienced before.


That bulleted lists should use the same verb form or conjugation:

  • Providing support to developing and emerging economies
  • AdvancementPromoting ofwaste management through education and training


That the lay person may not know the definition of the acronym or initialism so these need to be written in full with the acronym/initialism in brackets:

  • The United Nations Environment Programme(UNEA)


That names – particularly names that are foreign – are correct and whether a diacritical mark should be used.

  • Babcock and WilcoxVolundVølund


That reported speech is exactly that – quotations from printed matter should correspond exactly to the original.

This applies to publication titles too.