Copy editor should have the ability to understand the proper path to figure out the problems of a material. Working on material, copyeditors corrects spellings errors, grammatical errors, punctuations, italics, font types, capitalization, etc. Often, copy editors may contact the authors to correct the doubtful facts, conflict statements, and weak arguments. Being a copyeditor one should know the following basics in copyediting.
- One should check whether the title and content match and justify each other.
- Should look for the figures, tables and captions
- Should know the referencing style
- Should fix the page set up, clean the spacing errors
- Create style sheets for individual articles
- Look for the usage of first, second and third person usage and change
Content and Structure: Copyeditor must be aware of structure of the article and content presentation. The editor should look for the logical order of the content, usage of figures, tables and references. Should check for the match of appendix or supplement information.
Illustrations, graphs and tables: Usually, these materials considered as supporting data for the text. Copyeditor should make sure that the figures, tables and graphs are placed appropriately in the text. They have self-explanatory captions (legends) and look for the copyright information and permissions in case of reuse or reproduction.
Wording: Usage and pitching of the words is important for any international publishing product for the likely readers. The use of abbreviations and explanations should be appropriate.
Consistency: Copyeditor is responsible for the consistent use of words, hyphenates, capitalization, italics and spacing.
Legal Issues: Copyeditor makes sure that the paper or material is not having any conflict. A copyeditor checks the content plagiarism, liability and racial hatred, application of abusive languages and other such issues.
Proofreading is a checkpoint before a material is published, checking that the work of an authors, editor and typesetter is satisfactory, and error free. As a part of publication, proofreader is responsible for minimizing the publication cost and delay in publication time.
Compare the proofs: Proofreader should compare the edited work line by line with raw material or source file. In very few cases proofreaders prefer blind reading.
Ensure consistent styles: Proofreader should have a style guide (supplied by publisher or prepare their own) to make sure that style for titles, headings are in consistence with the published work.
Watch out for omissions: Often typesetters omit full or a part of the paragraphs; therefore, proofreaders should cross check the article before publication or sending the author copy.
Check the cross references: Should check the references are placed or cited appropriately, and used necessary citations in the article.