5 Types of Editing: Which One Do You Need Right Now?

by Melissa Norman
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5 Types of Editing Which One Do You Need Right Now

The literary editors are an author’s best friend. They hold the skill set, experience, as well as knowledge to take your manuscript to the next level. But not all editors do the same job, and it is essential to understand what type of editing your project demands at any given stage. In this guide, we will take you through multiple types of editing.

There are five main types of editing that you can expect:

  1. Editorial Assessments: These would provide broad feedback in the early stages.  
  2. Developmental Editing: An editor offers advice on the “Big-picture” problems such as plot holes or character development.  
  3. Copy Editing: This would focus on technical issues such as spelling and grammar and enhance the reading experience.  
  4. Proofreading: Ensure that your manuscript is error-free because it goes for print.  
  5. Fact-checking: It would take care of informational inconsistencies.  


An editorial assessment is mostly the first piece of professional assistance. Your editor would offer you some broad, however insightful responses on the major strengths and weaknesses in your plots, characters, and structure.  

  • Builds credibility.  
  • Enhances visibility.  
  • Widens your reach.  
  • Boost the brand name and recognition.  
  • Helps establish and maintain a competitive edge.  
  • Demonstrates thought leadership.  


Developmental editing is also known as content or substantive editing that involves an editor offering in-depth feedback on the “big-picture” problems. They would refine your ideas, shape your narratives, and even help you fix major plot or character inconsistencies to assist you if any elements of the story don’t work. Developmental editing is similar to an editorial assessment but has much more details.  

  • Helps you refine what you want to say. 
  • It would save you from your worst writing weaknesses.  
  • It can help you distill the narrative and focus on the influence. 
  • Helps to widen and trim your text.  
  • Tightens the plot and enhances the characters.  
  • Assist in helping you pace the story.  


The copyediting is the initial step after you are sure about what you’ve solved. An editor will read your work on the lookout for anything that makes it less readable, such as the word repetition and character inconsistencies. It is known as mechanical or line editing, which depends on the particular application.  

  • It improves the exactness.  
  • Forestalls the equivocalness. 
  • Depicts the right words. 
  • Boost the publishing. 
  • Lowers rejections. 
  • Consistent abbreviations.  
  • Integrity and confidence. 


A copy editor depicts and corrects the following elements in your work:  

  • The Spelling.  
  • Grammar.  
  • Capitalization.  
  • Word usage and repetition. 
  • Descriptive.  
  • POV. 
  • Usages of numbers and numerals.  
  • Dialogue tags.  

Copyeditors are meant to iron away from your word problems. Furthermore, it would be pretty distracting to your readers if you constantly misuse the dialogue tags and misspell the words. Copy editing would assure that the errors like these don’t happen and your writing is as strong as possible. Thus, your reader remains 100% focused on the story. They can also ensure that you’re using the right terminology and using inclusive language in your writing.  


These both are different; line editing and copy editing are both different. Line editing focuses on the content and flow of your prose. It works on the style rather than the mechanics.  


Proofreading is the last major stage for the editing procedure. The proofreaders are also eagle-eye inspectors who ensure no spelling or grammatical errors to make it to the final versions of your work. So, why should you get proofreading services?

It helps with the following:  

  • Inconsistencies in the spelling and style.  
  • Inconsistencies in the layout and typography.  
  • Confusing and awkward page, also, word breaks. 
  • The incorrect captioning on any illustrations and page numbers in the contents.  

Related: Proofreading Vs Editing – What’s The Difference?


When working with a proofreader, you should offer them a style sheet that notifies them of any specific spelling or writing styles in your manuscript. For fictional novels, there would be some words that you have created, and you need to tell those words to the editors, so they don’t correct them.  


It doesn’t matter how thoroughly you research your books; it can end up in informational inconsistencies, and this is a fact. The developmental and copy editors can assist with this, but at the end of the day, it is not their responsibility for fact-checking.  


These types of editing are particularly important if you are writing non-fictional and dedicated non-fictional editors. However, having a third eye is always a better option. Your manuscript can benefit a lot, in fact, it is very helpful for historical fiction and hard sci-fi. So, we all know that Rome was not built in a day, and your book is the same. Without hard work, teamwork, and dedication, it will not be a huge success.  

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