How should you edit your own work for publication?

Jump to Last Post 1-7 of 7 discussions (9 posts)
  1. TFScientist profile image83
    TFScientistposted 6 years ago

    How should you edit your own work for publication?

    Also, are there any differences between editing for online publication, blogs, and physical publication.

  2. Jeannieinabottle profile image90
    Jeannieinabottleposted 6 years ago

    I would say with anything you write, you should give it some time before editing your work, if at all possible.  I usually write a hub, edit it once immediately, and then come back to it a day or two later.  You notice a lot more when you come back a day or so later.  In your mind, you already know what was meant, so you read that instead of what is in front of you at first. 

    It does help to read it out loud if you can.  Even if you don't read it out loud, make sure to read it as if you have never seen it before.  It helps you determine if it reads well and makes sense.  It never hurts to add details or change sentences for clarity.

    1. profile image66
      Writer Chuckposted 6 years agoin reply to this

      I read my work over upon finishing it and correct any glaring mistakes. I come back the next day and read it aloud, trying to listen as if i've never heard it before.  If possible i like to read it again the third day.

  3. Radical Rog profile image75
    Radical Rogposted 6 years ago

    Print and edit a hard copy. If on screen, enlarge the print as much as possible and edit in a sans font as this makes errors easier to spot than when using a serif font.
    Never  ever rely on the automatic spellchecker to check spelling and grandma. Oh yes, that happened. A misspelled 'grammar' was auto changed to 'grandma' so no red underline and the author didn't check before submitting.
    The purpose of editing is to get it right. It doesn't matter whether it is a novel or a blog or a silly little tweet.

    1. profile image58
      Edwin Brownposted 6 years agoin reply to this

      To me, there are a couple of levels of editing.  The simplest is to check for spelling errors and mistakes in grammar.   The other, more complex area to review and correct when necessary is what I call clarity and coherence, a clear and logical flow.

  4. M. T. Dremer profile image91
    M. T. Dremerposted 6 years ago

    Careful re-reads are probably your best tool. You have to be willing to read your own work over and over again if you hope to iron out all the problems. Read it after you wrote it. Read it after setting it aside. Read it after editing it. I re-read everything, including emails, facebook posts, and even this comment. It won't always catch every error, but you'd be surprised how much you can fix.

  5. alancaster149 profile image84
    alancaster149posted 6 years ago

    First finish what you're writing. don't write and edit at the same time. If you change your mind about something, by all means do it, if you think it will set the pace. If your writing is retrospective then keep to the past tense in your prose. If your perspective changes, make a clear break or make your reader aware that your terms of reference have temporarily changed, and then go back to your chosen retrospective.
    My RAVENFEAST books are written as related to my central character in the present tense, but in places I take them back in time. Each time I 'change gear', I break the narrative and leave a visible space before taking them on. I also try to keep the prose going forward, active verbs not passive ones do that more effectively. 'I am going' is passive, 'I go' is active.
    Taken in context, I edit to keep the motion in motion. If my character is in a reflective mood, I will edit his thoughts to read active-passive. Keep the '-ing' endings to a minimum, otherwise you'll get your readers thinking I am not following this very easily. it's like mentally trudging through soft sand or mud. Let them stride through the narrative at a steady pace and they'll arrive refreshed at the end.
    Break up the narrative into bite-sized paragraphs. Don't 'rabbit' on and on. Life gets tedious enough without wading through pages of narrative without a rest. It's like a long walk, let your readers stop and admire the view, then tag them along again to the next view.
    They'll thank you by buying your books again.

  6. profile image57
    pflorence2013posted 6 years ago

    After reading and reviewing the book 'Grammer Girl' I remember a comment  which said write first, that's your rough draft; and edit second with punctuation, the same way if one was freestyle writing.

  7. Douglas Owen profile image60
    Douglas Owenposted 4 years ago

    It is hard to edit your own work. That being said, the answer will depend on how large the work is.

    An example: A short story under 6,000 words can be put aside for a few days and easily scanned for blatant errors.

    Novellas, or works exceeding 30,000 words, should be put aside for a full month before any editing is attempted.

    The real answer you are looking for is: You cannot truly edit your own work.


    To polish your work it goes through many rewrites and critiques. This will make the story very familiar to you. When this happens, your brain will disregard errors, and you will read your work skipping over the errors.

    What to do:

    Complete your rewrites until you have polished your story/novella/novel. Usually 6 or more rewrites will be needed. Once that is complete, search out a good editor. Don't go cheap on this step. Editing is important, and there are several different types of editing you can get. They range from simple editing (spelling and grammar checking), to line editing (following the story line for consistency).

    Poor editing sticks out and makes a person put your hard work down. If you are serious about writing, follow the steps and have a polished work available for your audience.


This website uses cookies

As a user in the EEA, your approval is needed on a few things. To provide a better website experience, uses cookies (and other similar technologies) and may collect, process, and share personal data. Please choose which areas of our service you consent to our doing so.

For more information on managing or withdrawing consents and how we handle data, visit our Privacy Policy at:

Show Details
HubPages Device IDThis is used to identify particular browsers or devices when the access the service, and is used for security reasons.
LoginThis is necessary to sign in to the HubPages Service.
Google RecaptchaThis is used to prevent bots and spam. (Privacy Policy)
AkismetThis is used to detect comment spam. (Privacy Policy)
HubPages Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide data on traffic to our website, all personally identifyable data is anonymized. (Privacy Policy)
HubPages Traffic PixelThis is used to collect data on traffic to articles and other pages on our site. Unless you are signed in to a HubPages account, all personally identifiable information is anonymized.
Amazon Web ServicesThis is a cloud services platform that we used to host our service. (Privacy Policy)
CloudflareThis is a cloud CDN service that we use to efficiently deliver files required for our service to operate such as javascript, cascading style sheets, images, and videos. (Privacy Policy)
Google Hosted LibrariesJavascript software libraries such as jQuery are loaded at endpoints on the or domains, for performance and efficiency reasons. (Privacy Policy)
Google Custom SearchThis is feature allows you to search the site. (Privacy Policy)
Google MapsSome articles have Google Maps embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
Google ChartsThis is used to display charts and graphs on articles and the author center. (Privacy Policy)
Google AdSense Host APIThis service allows you to sign up for or associate a Google AdSense account with HubPages, so that you can earn money from ads on your articles. No data is shared unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
Google YouTubeSome articles have YouTube videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
VimeoSome articles have Vimeo videos embedded in them. (Privacy Policy)
PaypalThis is used for a registered author who enrolls in the HubPages Earnings program and requests to be paid via PayPal. No data is shared with Paypal unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
Facebook LoginYou can use this to streamline signing up for, or signing in to your Hubpages account. No data is shared with Facebook unless you engage with this feature. (Privacy Policy)
MavenThis supports the Maven widget and search functionality. (Privacy Policy)
Google AdSenseThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Google DoubleClickGoogle provides ad serving technology and runs an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Index ExchangeThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
SovrnThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Facebook AdsThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Amazon Unified Ad MarketplaceThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
AppNexusThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
OpenxThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Rubicon ProjectThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
TripleLiftThis is an ad network. (Privacy Policy)
Say MediaWe partner with Say Media to deliver ad campaigns on our sites. (Privacy Policy)
Remarketing PixelsWe may use remarketing pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to advertise the HubPages Service to people that have visited our sites.
Conversion Tracking PixelsWe may use conversion tracking pixels from advertising networks such as Google AdWords, Bing Ads, and Facebook in order to identify when an advertisement has successfully resulted in the desired action, such as signing up for the HubPages Service or publishing an article on the HubPages Service.
Author Google AnalyticsThis is used to provide traffic data and reports to the authors of articles on the HubPages Service. (Privacy Policy)
ComscoreComScore is a media measurement and analytics company providing marketing data and analytics to enterprises, media and advertising agencies, and publishers. Non-consent will result in ComScore only processing obfuscated personal data. (Privacy Policy)
Amazon Tracking PixelSome articles display amazon products as part of the Amazon Affiliate program, this pixel provides traffic statistics for those products (Privacy Policy)
ClickscoThis is a data management platform studying reader behavior (Privacy Policy)