VirtualPaper Ė Your Books Copyeditor
Copyediting is a value addition function in the publication process. A diligent copyeditor adds value to a publication by correcting infelicities that may have crept inadvertently when the author wrote the text. These infelicities could manifest in multiple forms in the manuscript ranging from spell errors to obvious errors of fact. A homophone may escape an automated spell check process while the copyeditor has to pay attention to an error of fact (e.g. February 29 in a nonleap year).
A copyeditor is a sensitive critic applying editorial judgment and at the same time taking care not to change the author’s tone. The copyeditor is expected to politely point out errors in sentence construction, suggesting alternatives to the author so that the author’s intended meaning is not affected. Indisputable errors of grammar such as subject-verb disagreement, pronoun-antecedent mismatch, and bias in language need to be set right without queries to the author.
A writer’s block is a typical condition when the author is short of words to express their ideas. When does the reader experience a block? On reading a badly written manuscript that is poorly edited finds its way to publication despite checks and balances. An inconsistent text is sure to drive the reader to doubt the validity of the fact, argument, discussion, or presentation, while ambiguous sentences (e.g. dangling modifiers) might convey different meaning other than the intended one. Closely related data when presented in different formats (for example, different units used for the same physical property or measure) introduces an element of ambiguity in an otherwise innocuous text. Put together, the reader to whom the publication is intended finds the publication unworthy of its price if the publication contains profound errors.
Book as a Complete Product
A book is a collection of ideas on the same topic in multiple facets or a combination of various themes depending on the chapter make-up. The preface is the window to the book where the authors or editors present the aim of publication, intended audience, and benefits of the bookís publication. Unlike journal articles, which are independent summations of research findings, books deal with a topic in depth, elaborating on various research activities on the topic of discussion. The reader gains immense knowledge and fundamental understanding of a focused topic discussed throughout a book. Thus, a book represents a complete product instead of a loose collection of articles assembled in a journal issue.
Benefits of Copyediting
How does a book benefit from copyediting? A copyeditor working on the book pays attention to authorial infelicities across the book to present a uniform ďexperienceĒ to the reader, aiding better comprehension and clarity without changing the authorís intended tone. The benefits of good copyediting are numerous. Depending on the level of an editorís background, knowledge, comprehension, contextual judgment, and flair, a book may benefit by application of such tacit and explicit knowledge of the copyeditor. A well-executed copyedit should benefit the reader for whom the publication is intended, the publisher who showcases an authorís work to the outside world, and the author who uses the book as a medium to convey information.
VirtualPaper recognizes the impact of books and the authorís toil to create a book. Books as a complete product represent a treasure trove of information that should be properly conveyed to whom it is intended. Books open up the readerís perspective, widening the horizon of knowledge and adding to the repository of existing knowledge. Keeping all these facts in mind, Copyediting for Books is not a mechanical activity at VirtualPaper. The editing process tries to serve the interests of three stakeholders in books production: (1) the publisher, (2) the author, and (3) the reader.
By diligently adhering to house style, VirtualPaper addresses the publisher perspective. By serving as the authorís second pair of eyes and helping the author convey information as intended to the target audience, VirtualPaper preserves the tone of the authorís writing and addresses the pitfalls of the authorís writing. Intelligent queries open up the author-editor dialogue, which rests at a harmonious level, facilitating the author to engage in a critical appraisal of the presented content for readerís benefit. By providing a clean, consistent, and readable copy, VirtualPaper translates the authorís intention by an invisible wisdom of the VirtualPaper edit to the reader. VirtualPaper possesses capability to assist with copyedit of books of any complexity in the scholarly domain, especially science, technology, medicine (STM) and humanities and social sciences (HSS) segments.