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The Five Point Preamble: Essential Editing Checks (Part Two)

Part Two

In my last blog I promised to share some of my suggestions for saving money on the editing of your business book. A quality editing job has a hefty price tag attached but there are a number of things you can do before you hand the project over to an editor that will help get the job done as economically as possible.

Without further ado, here are my top five suggestions for doing exactly that:

Top Tip #1: Check the Order of Things.

In the excitement of spilling your wisdom out on paper it’s easy to revisit a topic a number of times in the course of a chapter and in the course of a book. Apples go with apples and oranges go with oranges. Go through your manuscript and rearrange whatever is necessary in order to make sure you don’t repeat yourself.

I stumbled up on a beautiful organizational rubric years ago when I found Bernice McCarthy’s 4Mat System of Learning. It’s based on how people pay attention and how we can keep them engaged when we’re presenting them with our information. Dr. McCarthy says that in order to maximize audience involvement you need to organize your information in the following order:

  • Why it’s important
  • What it is
  • How it works
  • And what the implications are

I’ve been using this rubric for years and I believe that if you organize your information this way as well, you will never go wrong.

Top Tip #2: Check to Make Sure You Haven’t Left Anything Out

When writing our books we often get so close to the material that we think we’ve said things that only actually got as far as the voice in our head. Go through your manuscript slowly and critically and list all the points you’ve made. Then set it aside for a day or two before looking thoughtfully at the list and asking if there is anything there that should be there…but isn’t. You can’t rush this stage, tempting as it is. Just take your time.

Editing is a methodical skill that not all authors enjoy but if you can knuckle down and deal with the detail at this stage you’ll be well on your way to saving money on professional editing fees. The next two blogs in this series will outline my final three suggestions for saving money on the editing of your book. In the meantime, if you’d like to talk about your book project, please connect with me at


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