5 Errors Editors Do Not Want to See in Manuscripts

When reading an important manuscript, every discerning editor should always take note of the usual errors and problems that may be spread in the entire composition. Some editors instantly return the copies for revising after discovering screaming grammar errors and content distortions in the initial pages. Most writers get so occupied that they overlook poor grammar and usage, misspellings, typographical errors, improper punctuation, and other problems. 

To be honest, most manuscripts are not approved for publishing after submission. Editors require revisions to make sure the compositions are as close to perfect as humanly possible. While some writers strive to lessen possible problems for revisions, others seem not to care at all (personal experience talking). Let’s look at some things that tend to burden your editors that you love so much (just nod your head and agree, lol).  

  • Poor grammar is common among writers. Every sentence should be grammatically correct and send a clear, effective message to the reader. Most editors are strict regarding grammar. We, sometimes erroneously, assume all writers are already very adept and careful. No GOOD editor would overlook poor grammar, except for when it is needed for character dialogue or is within the exact words of a quote. In those cases, the improper grammar should be left alone.
  • Redundancy can be distracting. No reader wants to read a book that is full of redundant ideas. The space should be used wisely and efficiently. Repeating ideas should be avoided unless there is a strong emphasis. Redundancy could also be observed in improper use of words. Examples include: repeat again, period of time, refer back, past experience, and free gift. 
  • Improper paragraphing occurs when paragraphs are either too long or are improperly separated. As a rule of thumb, make sure there is only one idea tackled in a single paragraph. Good ones are also almost always about three sentences long. Ten sentences in a paragraph may be uneasy to the eyes and to the idea. 
  • Erroneous facts are considered mortal sins when writing. Accuracy always matters. Any writer should make sure all information is well-researched. Although it is the responsibility of editors to look out for things like this, some have this listed as a separate service. So to avoid paying extra, you may want to double-check your fact-finding prior to publishing. 
  • Punctuation errors are as grievous as grammar mistakes. This is because punctuations play a critical role in readers’ comprehension. Truthfully, avid writers are expected to have mastered using periods, question marks, commas, exclamation points, and even apostrophes. Many other punctuation marks are involved. In an effort to decreased errors, experts advise writers to stay away, as much as possible, from parentheses, colons, and dashes, if they aim to significantly avoid possible mistakes. However, if you connect with a good editor, you should have no worries!  

Adrienne Michelle Horn is the owner of I A.M. Editing, Ink. Although she has a full-time professional career in the healthcare field, she is also a South Florida-based editor, poet, author, entrepreneur, and mother of her beautiful daughter, Paris.For more information about Adrienne and how her company can help you with your next project, follow I A.M. Editing, Ink on social media or visit https://linktr.ee/iamediting