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Copyediting & Proofreading for Dummies Paperback – 20 Apr 2007

3.9 out of 5 stars 33 customer reviews

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Product details

  • Paperback: 384 pages
  • Publisher: For Dummies; 1 edition (20 April 2007)
  • Language: English
  • ISBN-10: 0470121718
  • ISBN-13: 978-0470121719
  • Product Dimensions: 18.3 x 2.8 x 22.9 cm
  • Average Customer Review: 3.9 out of 5 stars  See all reviews (33 customer reviews)
  • Amazon Bestsellers Rank: 64,575 in Books (See Top 100 in Books)
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  • See Complete Table of Contents

Product description

From the Back Cover

Turn your knack for language into a lucrative career

Must–know techniques and resources for maximizing your accuracy and speed

Interested in becoming a copyeditor or proofreader? Want to know more about what each job entails? This friendly guide helps you position yourself for success. Polish your skills, build a winning résumé, and land the job you′ve always wanted. Books, magazines, Web sites, corporate documents find out how to improve any type of publication and make yourself indispensable to writers, editors, and your boss.

THE DUMMIES WAY®

Explanations in plain English
"Get in, get out" information
Icons and other navigational aids
Online cheat sheet
Top ten lists
A dash of humor and fun

Discover how to:

Balance between style and rules
Master the art of the query
Use proofreader symbols
Edit and proof electronic documents
Build a solid freelancing career

Get Smart!
@www.dummies.com

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About the Author

Suzanne Gilad has proofread or copyedited over 1,200 titles for more than 20 prominent publishing imprints.


Customer reviews

Top customer reviews

Format: Paperback Verified Purchase
this boonorth America, and is no use to someone wanting to start a proofreading business in the uk.
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A Reference for the Rest of the English-speaking World.

There's the nub of my problem with this book. Two countries separated by a common language and all that. I accept a large portion of the blame for not looking a little more closely when I purchased it, but there we go -- you live and learn. We're not just talking the odd differences in spelling for a few words here and there, which I could live with, but a whole raft of different conventions concerning punctuation, grammar, style and usage. For example, Gilad's proofreading marks differ greatly from samples I've seen of marks used in Britain. I don't want to learn all that only to find out that I have to forget them all and learn another set! Her book and website references are almost exclusively American-oriented and so of limited use to us Old Worlders, too.

Then there's the tone in which this book is written. Perhaps I need to get out more but this is irritatingly upbeat about everything. Problem? Drawback? Disadvantage? Boring bit? No! You're looking at it the wrong way! It's an opportunity! It's fabulous! It's marvellous! It's just what you always wanted! This energy is tiring after a while. Reading this book feels a little like being preached at or indoctrinated into a cult. It feels uncomfortably like a self-help book. (Not that I read them.) Then there were plenty of unfamiliar phrases. What does "nix" mean? "Moxie", anyone? What is a "peanut-gallery commentary"? Is it like a coconut shy at a fairground? Can you begin a sentence with "Most every"? I also liked her suggestion that in Britain we spell 'bank' as "banque". Ye Olde Banque? I particularly liked her advice to "use commas sparingly" -- in a sentence containing unnecessary commas. Not incorrectly placed commas, just unnecessary commas.
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This book appears to be well-written and tries to get across the various pitfalls that copy-editors and proofreaders will inevitably encounter, the big problem with it is that it's aimed entirely at an American market. As soon as I opened it I could tell that the proofreading symbols employed throughout the book tally with British Standard 1219, which have subsequently been replaced by BS 5261C:2005 in this country and are consequently no longer in use, not to mention the differences in spelling, punctuation and other style conventions that distinguish between American and British English. If you want to find out more about becoming a proofreader and copy-editor, I can recommend The Pocket Book of Proofreading by William Critchley and Trevor Horwood's Freelance Proofreading and Copy-editing: A Guide, which I have found very useful.

As George Bernard Shaw remarked, 'England and America are two countries separated by a common language.' How very true. I have now returned it to Amazon.
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Format: Paperback
I bought this book on the strength of the "Dummies" series being very informative and easy to read. I was looking for an overview of what proofreading involves, a few examples and tips on how to freelance in this industry.
The book is extremely easy to read - a chatty style which made me laugh out loud quite often. The information is very interesting and informative. HOWEVER, it is written with an American market in mind and whilst some of the advice is universal, the links to websites, the proofreading symbols and recommendations on how to approach companies for work are not going to help if you are based in the UK. The proofreading symbols are different and would have to be re-learnt for UK standards.
All that said, if you are wanting to find out about proofreading and see some examples of what it involves, then it's still a good text. But if you want a head start on learning how to proofread, then find a different book written for a UK audience! I am now halfway through a proofreading/copy editing course and have not used the Dummies book once to help me - but it did wet my apetite for joining the world of editing.
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Format: Paperback
This seemed an excellent book, except for one thing - it is American. The US and UK proofreading symbols, and of course spelling, are very different so this is of very little use for someone wanting to learn more about copyediting and proofreading in the UK. However, if you are from the US, this looks a useful and informative book.
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Leaving aside the obvious Americanisation, this book is a clear and concisely written book (as you would expect from someone writing about proofreading), however, it is not particularly useful if you wish to work any other way other than freelance. I work for an agency as a content writer, and I purchased this book to try and improve my skills. There appears to be a fair amount of fluff, and it wasn't until Chapter 4 any proofreading tactics were even mentioned. This book has the potential to be so much more than it is if it focused more on proofreading/copyediting tactics and less on finding jobs or establishing your physical position as an editor.
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I have given three stars because 2 stars are "don't like it"

I agree with all the other comments "OK for US but no good for UK" I hope the blurb is changed to reflct this.

There are some good points but overall a disaappointment,but considering the cost I will put this down to experience.
I ave noticed however that the standard of news bulletins now seems to have slipped into mid Atlantic mode so perhaps this book may be useful after all. There are now verbs like "showcase" "hike" !!!! What happened to presented and increase.
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