These sample edits will give you an idea of how the editing process works, and the results you can expect to see from a professional edit and proofread. Without exception all of my authors, young and old, experienced or new to writing, have been astonished at how their manuscript has been transformed by an edit without ever changing their voice. 
 

 

Sample edit 1 
 
Sample edit 1 is an example of how a manuscript benefited from a full, creative, option 3 edit. 
This lovely gentleman had written a really compelling novel, but by his own admission had struggled to punctuate it and construct proper sentences. He requested that the book be edited in UK English, to include explanations for some West Country colloquialisms, but that we exchange words like 'mobile' for 'phone' in order for the book to be more globally readable.  
 
He was overjoyed with the final edit, and when he began his second novel he applied what he had learned from the edit of his first book and his writing improved tremendously. 
 
 
FIRST DRAFT 
Jack reached into his jacket pocket and retrieved the Pendent Penny had reluctantly given him to repair he was puzzled by the inscription on itTo my Spanish eyes Love Mummy’– so he phoned Penny's aunts to see if they could put a light on it. 
 
May answered the phone when he called but because she had become very emotional when they’d spoke about Sarah,he felt it might be better to speak to Anne.May kept Sam talking for several minits, mostly about the weekend he had just spend with them, and Penny before finally handing the phone over to her sister anne 
 
“Hi Anne”, he said in a soft and ,kindly tone of his voice “just a quick question …“Yes, dear, what is it?” she said, having no idea what he wanted to now but was sure it was concerned her. “Anne this Pendent of Penny’s,why Spanish eyes? Jack said. Penny has hazel eyes, not dark brown eyes of the Spanish.” He said." 
 
 
 
 
FIRST EDIT 
Jack reached into his jacket pocket and retrieved the pendant Penny had reluctantly given him to repair; he was puzzled by the inscription on it – ‘To my Spanish eyes, love Mummy’ – so he phoned Penny's aunts to see if they could shed any light on it.*1 
 
May answered the phone when he called, but because she had become very emotional when they’d last spoken about Sarah, he felt it might be better to speak to Anne. But she kept him*2 talking for several minutes – mostly about the weekend they had all spent together – before finally handing the phone over to her sister. 
 
“Hi, Anne,” he said softly*3. “Just a quick question …” 
 
“Yes, dear, what is it?” she replied, having no idea what he wanted to know, but sure it concerned Penny. 
 
“Anne, this pendant of Penny’s … why ‘Spanish eyes’? Penny has hazel eyes, not the traditional*4 dark brown eyes of the Spanish.” 

 
FIRST EDIT EXPLAINED 
 

You will note that I have automatically corrected the punctuation and grammar. The asterisks are explained as follows: 
 
*1 – The correct expression is 'shed any light' 
 
*2 – I have changed ‘May’ and ‘Jack’ to ‘she’ and ‘he’ because use of their names was becoming very repetitive. There was also a name inconsistency: ‘Sam’ appearing instead of ‘Jack’. Note too that there were lots of appearances of ‘he said’ and ‘she said’, so these have been trimmed where necessary. This is something I will do automatically with an author’s permission 
 
*3 – I suggested just ‘softly’ here, as ‘… he said in a soft and kindly tone of his voice’ is a little clumsy 
 
*4 – Another small suggestion to help clarify the point about Spanish eyes 
 
I think you will agree that this text has benefited greatly from an edit and proofread - without altering its meaning, context or voice in any way.  
 
Have a look at my editorial services page to see how the editing process works and what levels of edit I offer. 
 

Sample edit 2 
 
The following is an example of how a book can be pretty accurate textually, but despite its amazing message be rather uninspiring in its delivery. My instructions here were to give it a little more personality - more reflective of the warm-hearted gentleman who wrote it. 

 
FIRST DRAFT 
You can lose weight and keep it off for the rest of your life and this book will guide you around some of the hidden problems associated with being over weight. It addresses the areas that diet programmes don’t deal with. It provides unorthodox solutions that when tried, become part of our thinking that brings us to an understanding and a new way of tackling this modern curse. 
 
My conclusion from my work as a therapist and from my own experience of weight loss is that we are dealing with a very complex condition suffered by millions of people worldwide. We are all unique and are motivated in many different ways. Methods that work for some won’t necessarily work for you. You might discover a system suggested in this book that you have never thought of before; a system that will make all the difference to your success rate and your goals will be reached for the first time. 
FIRST EDIT 
I know you’ve probably heard this a million times before, but you can lose weight and keep it off for the rest of your life. This book promises to guide you around some of the hidden problems associated with being overweight. It addresses the vital areas that diet programmes simply don’t deal with, providing a new understanding into how to tackle the modern-day curse of being overweight. 
 
From my own experience of weight loss, I learned that we are dealing with a very complex condition suffered by millions of people worldwide. We are all unique and are motivated in many different ways, and methods that work for some won’t necessarily work for you. But the system discussed in this book will make all the difference to your success rate - and your goals will be reached, possibly for the first time in your life. 
 
 
This edit fell between an option 1 and option 2, and at 35,000 words cost £315. The author was very happy with the ‘lift’ that his manuscript had been given and the fact that his voice had been preserved. 
Each manuscript is unique and requires personal attention, which is why I will always have a good look at your book before discussing what it may need in terms of an edit. (I do not charge for this.) 

 

US to UK English edit 
If you are an author in the US writing a novel about places or events in the UK, it can be a challenge to use the correct terminology. We Brits have some pretty quirky phrases and expressions depending on where we are from: 'baps' in the north, for instance, but most definitely 'bread rolls' in the south! We are also unlikely to say 'Can I get [a coffee]?', but would instead ask 'Can I have?' or 'I would like'. 
 
These are things that I address in a US to UK English edit, along with the obvious differences in spelling, grammar and punctuation. 
It’s a matter of language integrity, and one that makes all the difference to the authenticity of your manuscript. 
Sample edit of US to UK English 
FIRST DRAFT 
Walking through London's Covent Garden, John turned to Kizzy. His new sneakers where pinching. 
“Kizz, you want to get a soda someplace?” he asked in his high-glass English accent. 
Kizzy smiled. She knew he was trying to hide the fact his feet were hurting. She pointed out a traditional Irish bar in a side street, asking “Will there do” 
He took a look quickly spotting the rowdy revelers outside. Three of them were sat on the hood of a large saloon, the rest were loitering on the sidewalk. 
“Hmm……..not for me”, he sighed, realizing he sounded pretty unfriendly. 
 
FIRST EDIT 
Walking through London’s Covent Garden, John turned to Kizzy. His new trainers*1 were pinching. 
“Kizz, would you like to stop for a cold drink somewhere?”*2 he asked in his cut-glass English accent. 
Kizzy smiled. She knew he was trying to hide the fact his feet were hurting. She pointed out a traditional Irish pub*3, in a side street, asking, “Will there do?” 
He took a look, quickly spotting the rowdy revellers outside. Three of them were sat on the bonnet*4 of a large car; the rest were loitering on the path.*5 
“Hmm … not for me,” he sighed, realising he sounded pretty unfriendly. 
EDIT EXPLAINED 
*1 – We say ‘trainers’ in the UK 
*2 – John, in his cut-glass accent, would be more likely to ask: ‘Kizz, would you like to stop for a cold drink somewhere?’ 
*3 - We generally use the word 'pub' 
*4 & *5– We say ‘bonnet' in the UK, and ‘car’ not 'saloon' 
*6 - 'Path' or 'pavement', not 'sidewalk' 
 
There are so many factors to consider when editing in US to UK English: punctuation and grammar are different; spellings are different; terminology is very different, and this level of attention would come under an option 3 edit.  
 
Please don't hesitate to email me at kimberley@morethan-words.com or call me on 01788 824577 or 07754 778910 if you think your manuscript might benefit from a US to UK edit. 
'Kimberley has the capacity to translate and order all my waffle into something intelligible and readable. Ever the professional, she has become a friend too as over the last three years we've turned my incredible and quite bonkers experiences as a bus salesman in the Philippines in the 1970s into three books. I have nothing  
but praise for her work' 
 
David Wilson, Leamington Spa 
Author of Singapore Nudes and Other Such Tales, Donkeys are not Reindeer and At Least it's not an Elephant  
 
 
 

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Email: kimberley@ 
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'As all authors know, the amount of hours we invest in our books is beyond measure, and we need to know that our books are every bit as good as anything marketed out there. Kimberley shares this viewpoint and does what it takes to turn a good book into a great one. 
 
In my experience, you won't find better' 
 
Magda B. Brajer, London 
Author of six books