WordsWorth Communications

Copyediting, proofreading, and writing



Catherine M. Albano

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Copyeditors concern themselves with spelling, grammar, punctuation, syntax, and word usage while preserving the author's voice. They are frequently asked to also impose a consistent style and format depending on the type of publication; some documents require adherence to particular styles, such as Associated Press (AP) style, Chicago Manual of Style (CMS), or American Psychological Associate (APA) style.

For most documents, the copyeditor reads such documents as a representative of the author's intended audience. If something is unclear, the copyeditor queries the author. The intent of copyediting is simply to make the document as good as it can be. Occasionally the copyeditor may be asked to edit a document for which she does not have technical expertise. Even if it could be understood completely by readers, she should query the author about passages that appear unclear, but frame the query in terms of expert knowledge in comparison to her own. Ultimately, what's most important is whether the audience understands the author's words.

Fundamental tasks that are frequently required of a copyeditor, in addition to what's mentioned above, include (1) preparation of a style sheet that will travel with the copyedited document through the rest of its journey to publication and (2) cross-checking of references, art, figures, tables, and other features for consistency in each mention within the text. A style sheet summarizes certain decisions, such as capitalization or number treatment, made during the edit that might divert from the standard style prescribed.


Proofreaders typically compare the current version of text with the preceding version, marking discrepancies in text, and checking for problems in page makeup, layout, color separation, or type. Proofreading can also include checking proof against typesetting specifications, querying or correcting errors or inconsistencies, and reading for typographical errors or for sense without reading against copy.

Proofreading follows copyediting, sometimes immediately, and sometimes later in the publishing process.

Selected Titles


The Arms of the Family

Finite Mathematics

The Korean War: Interpretive Essays

Listen Here: Women Writing in Appalachia (partial)

McKeachie’s Teaching Tips

Reading Wise 1 through 8



Natural Killer Cells

Minimally Invasive Maxillofacial Surgery

Taking Sides: Clashing Views in Adolescence

Quantitative Methods in Healthcare Management

Essentials of Radiation Biology and Protection

Essentials of Medical Terminology

Biotechnology of Lactic Acid Bacteria: Novel Applications

Mass Spectrometry in Sports Drug Testing

Ethical Practice in Psychology



A History of Weed Science in the United States

Journal of Robotic Systems




Human Resource Management

Critical Thinking: Strategies for Decision Making

Handling Difficult People and Situations

Calming Upset Customers

Becoming a Successful Supervisor

Conflict Management

Making the Most of Being Mentored


The Least You Should Know about English



In Design CS4: Basic, ACE Edition

Illustrator CS4: Basic, ACE Edition

Photoshop CS4: Basic, ACE Edition

A+ Certification: OS Technologies

InDesign 1.5 Electronic Print Publishing

Linux + Certification

Using Google Drive and Productivity Apps

CompTIA Network+

Zoho CRM: Advanced User Skills

Zoho Creator: Essentials of Application Development

Programming Google App Engine Applications in Python



Technical Drawing and Engineering Communication

Many Peoples, Many Faiths

Independent Filmmaker's Manual

Jazz Styles: History and Analysis