Line editing is sometimes referred to as copyediting, but I see it—ideally—as a distinct step that comes before the copyedit. Once you’ve completed developmental revisions and the manuscript is structurally sound (the story works, the characters are vibrant, plot holes have been eliminated, the narrative has solid internal logic), then you’re ready for the line edit. In line editing, I take a line-by-line, paragraph-by-paragraph approach to identify ways to improve the power and effectiveness of your prose.
When you receive your manuscript after the line edit, it will have extensive comments and queries, as well as in-text edits, that focus on
- word choice
- showing versus telling
- eliminating redundancy
- weeding out clichés
- trimming deadwood
- improving narrative flow/transitions
- consistent characterization
- consistent point of view
- effective sentence structure
- realistic dialogue
- paragraph order and organization
I use the track changes function for all edits and queries; I’ll also provide a summary of the major issues that my line edit addresses in your manuscript.