How to Edit Your Blog Post Before Publishing —With Love, an English Teacher

Editing Your Writing

Writing is a process. Editing is an important part of that process, ensuring that readers are able to understand the articles or hubs they come across online.
Writing is a process. Editing is an important part of that process, ensuring that readers are able to understand the articles or hubs they come across online. | Source

Editing Help

Editing is one of the most important steps in the writing process. Without it, articles, books, stories or even hubs would be incoherent and difficult to read. Editing helps to make sure every piece of writing is following standard grammar and spelling rules that ensure a reader's ability to easily read and understand a piece of writing.

While reading some of the articles I find online, I have come across some new articles or hubs that make the English teacher in me cringe a little. These articles, while containing interesting information, are full of some very basic writing errors, such as in capitalization, spelling, typos, texting language, run-ons and fragments. To me, that automatically makes an article or hub unappealing, and I immediately ‘hop’ on to the next one.

This article isn’t meant to criticize those with articles or hubs containing errors—please don’t get me wrong. It’s not what I usually submit (baby/toddler/parenting articles), but I’m hoping to help anyone willing to read this with their editing before they publish their work which is then available for the world to read.

You want more and more readers/followers, right? Editing will help!


Editing Your Own Work

Do you take the time to edit your writing?

See results without voting

Revising and Editing

Here are some of the editing techniques I use when I write. They are tried and true techniques; they have been documented (meaning, some are very common in the education world), they have been used successfully by my middle school students, and I use them myself. They might even be techniques you have read about elsewhere but that you have been out of touch with for a while. They will take time and effort, but they are certainly worth both your precious time and effort.

1. Read your writing aloud. To edit, many people just scan what they wrote instead of truly examining it. Since they ‘know’ what they wrote, they don’t really see what is actually on the page and they miss many of the basic mistakes that are present. This is a pretty important step in editing. To do so, all you need is to read your writing word for word to yourself. By listening to your words as well as looking at them, you are forcing your brain to focus on the conventions (spelling, sentence structure, punctuation, etc.) rather than just the content. Look for common homophone/homonyms errors (their, there, they’re…etc.). Listen to your sentences—can you identify the subject and the predicate? Do you use a certain word too often? Find a synonym. Look to make sure all of your sentences start with a capital letter.

You might feel silly doing this, but don’t! If you feel silly, find a quiet place away from others and just focus on making your writing the best it can be!

2. Ask another person to read it. It’s all about perspective; your ‘editor’ might see something that you missed, or ask you a question about confusing word choice/sentence structure. Ask them for some constructive criticism: what might they want to see in your writing that they think would be an improvement.

3. Create smooth transitions. Does your writing lack transitions? Transitions make writing easier to read because they give the reader a sort of map to follow. “First, pick up the pencil. Next, scribble all over your paper. Lastly, crumble up paper and make an attempt at a two-point shot into recycling bin.” Perhaps your writing has too many transitions. You may have to take some out to keep your writing from becoming too choppy.

4. Revise texting language. If you’re looking to write a quality hub that other adults are going to read, avoid using word shortcuts like “u” or text acceptable errors like “i” for I (the personal subject pronoun). We’re all guilty of it these days, but it shouldn’t be part of a quality essay.

5. After making improvements, read it again, aloud. It’s just one extra step towards writing a great hub. Read it aloud again, listening for anything that may need to be revised again. Make sure your writing sounds and looks like it will help you gain more followers, (and in some instances, more money).

Often, this whole process will need to be repeated several times before you get everything right. It is worth it though, isn't it?


Writing Articles for Publication

These are just a few of my editing techniques; there are so many more out there if you’re interested in doing some more research. Following these techniques or others should really help you in your quest of being a quality hubber.

Try not to just rely on spell checkers or the grammar indicators that will help but not find all of your mistakes or areas of improvement. Just like I always told my students, writing is a process, and it’s certainly a process you want to be very involved in if you are ready to write and publish essays for which you want to receive recognition.


Editing My Own Articles

As I finish up with this writing, I acknowledge that I have read it about three times now aloud (my only audience available right now is a three-year old…). During each of the three times, I found areas that needed improvement and I adjusted what I wrote. Voila! I am ready to submit my article.

Good luck with your writing!


©ThePracticalMommy

Editing Your Own Work

Is there anything different that you do to edit? Please let me know what works for you in the comments. Thanks for reading! Best of luck, fellow hubbers!

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Comments 151 comments

ThePracticalMommy profile image

ThePracticalMommy 4 years ago from United States Author

TToombs08, glad you found this helpful! Thanks for reading. :)


TToombs08 profile image

TToombs08 4 years ago from Somewhere between Heaven and Hell without a road map.

Some very helpful information for solitary writers that don't always have someone handy to help out with the editing part of writing. Will be keeping this handy!


ThePracticalMommy profile image

ThePracticalMommy 4 years ago from United States Author

Phillydreamer, have you tried writing first in Word or other word processing programs? They can pick up a lot of grammar mistakes, although you'll still have to search for some. :) In the meantime, check out the many great hubs about comma usage for some help.

Thanks for reading and commenting!


PHILLYDREAMER profile image

PHILLYDREAMER 4 years ago from Lodi, New Jersey

It's annoying because I'm really bad with my comma usage. I always second guess myself if I should use one or not. Even after I re read sometimes I'll miss something. It would be really nice if Hub Pages offered a grammar check program. This would make things a lot easier.


ThePracticalMommy profile image

ThePracticalMommy 4 years ago from United States Author

petealex, I'm glad you like the article. It's true: as writers we know in our heads what we want to 'say' but it may not always be clear in our writing. We need to write so that the reader can clearly understand the message we are trying to convey. Thanks so much for reading and commenting!


petealex profile image

petealex 4 years ago

I love this article. It very important we edit our work as writers because we understand what we want to say but the reader may not.


ThePracticalMommy profile image

ThePracticalMommy 4 years ago from United States Author

Beth J, if I could award you an accolade for being helpful, I would! Typo fixed! I just added that last sentence the other day and I guess I didn't take my own advice. Tsk tsk. Shame on me! I worked so hard when I first published this hub to make sure there were no errors and then with one edit I make a silly one anyway. Argh!

Thanks so much for catching that! I appreciate your kindness! :D


remaniki profile image

remaniki 4 years ago from Chennai, India

Oh, that's very nice of you Marissa. Thanks very much for the encouraging words.

Cheers

Rema


ThePracticalMommy profile image

ThePracticalMommy 4 years ago from United States Author

Rema, just from your comment, I can see that you have a great grasp of written English. I'd be happy to check out some of your hubs. Thanks for reading and commenting!


Beth J profile image

Beth J 4 years ago from India

Hi Marissa,

Thank you for posting this hub, it's a really useful! However, I wanted to point out one typo: Under point number 5, the last sentence has a redundant 'is'. Please don't get me wrong- I thought removing that one error would make this extremely useful hub flawless in all respects!


remaniki profile image

remaniki 4 years ago from Chennai, India

Hi Marissa,

Great hub. Thanks for sharing. I have learned quite a few things from this hub as I always wonder if I go wrong anywhere in my use of the English language particularly because I'm not a native English hubber.

I do go over my hub a few times before publishing, so I feel quite confident about its correctness. I would feel happy if you visited one of my hubs and posted a comment as that would motivate me to make more hubs. Thank you.

Cheers

Rema


ThePracticalMommy profile image

ThePracticalMommy 4 years ago from United States Author

sunbun143, no problem! It's a great hub!


ThePracticalMommy profile image

ThePracticalMommy 4 years ago from United States Author

emilybee, that's great that you go back to the older hubs to fix them up. It's also a good practice to leave the hub unpublished for a day and then going back to it. I know of quite a few people who do that, myself included. Thanks so much for reading and commenting! :)


sunbun143 profile image

sunbun143 4 years ago from Los Angeles, CA

Thanks for linking to "How to Write 'Right'"!


emilybee profile image

emilybee 4 years ago

I love editing through my hubs, but some of my old hubs are not the greatest - I've been slowing fixing up some of those ones :) Having good transitions IS important. I usually do a hub, rough-draft or so and leave it unpublished, then go to bed and mull over in my head what I have written. While laying down, new ideas sometimes pop into my head or ways to clarify things better so I can change them later. Great hub! voted up.


ThePracticalMommy profile image

ThePracticalMommy 4 years ago from United States Author

sunbun143, please don't think I'm going to be the grammar police now! ;) Homophones/homonyms are probably the most misused words in the English language (I'll have to go do some research on that!). They're one of the reasons why English is difficult to learn.

I'm on my way to check out your new hub! I'm sure it's great. :D Thanks for reading and commenting!


sunbun143 profile image

sunbun143 4 years ago from Los Angeles, CA

I just found this hub but it says everything I've been thinking...some mistakes are clearly typos, but some are just fundamentally wrong! I, too, hate homophone misunderstandings or misusage...I just wrote a hub including a long list of commonly misused words. Hope you get a chance to look it over. Please correct me if I'm wrong or have a glaring typo/grammar mistake anywhere in my hub! Thanks!


ThePracticalMommy profile image

ThePracticalMommy 4 years ago from United States Author

Victoria Lynn, thanks for reading and commenting! I find that transitions are often neglected as a part of effective writing. Plus, it would drive me crazy as a teacher when I taught the concept to my students and then found some of them using a transition in every sentence. Yikes!

I'll have to go read your new hub and link it to this one as well. :D


Victoria Lynn profile image

Victoria Lynn 4 years ago from Arkansas, USA

Great article! I just wrote one about proofreading your own work. I may link yours to mine, as it reinforces it and gives some additional things to consider. I didn't think about checking for transitions. I love your example. Enjoyed this one! Many votes!


ThePracticalMommy profile image

ThePracticalMommy 4 years ago from United States Author

EuroNinila, it's always good to have a refresher course. Thanks for reading and commenting! :)


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    Marissa (ThePracticalMommy)1,084 Followers
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    Marissa is the writer of ThePracticalMommy and the blog Mommy Knows What's Best. She is a stay at home mom to four and was a teacher.



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