Last week saw the publication of the first ever book copy-edited by Accuracy Matters (fanfare, please!). Best Practice Makes Perfect! 171 inspirational ideas to help achieve a perfect practice, aimed at helping financial advisory firms and financial planning companies to run their businesses more effectively, is written by Michelle Hoskin. Michelle is one of those people whose personality comes through in everything she writes. She’s got an informal tone of voice, and is bubbly and enthusiastic.
There’s a challenge in copy-editing this kind of writing: you have to strike a balance. As a copy-editor you rightly focus on accuracy, but at the same time you have to make sure that you don’t let the pedant that lurks inside you take over and erase the charm from the author’s writing.
I suppose it’s about respecting your client. If they know what they want to say and they know their audience, limit your meddling.
We can blog all day long about the finer points of grammar, and I shudder along with proofreaders across the land at the poor use of an apostrophe here or an abbreviation there. But at the same time, I like the Accuracy Matters approach of working alongside our clients to polish what they’ve written – they pay us for intelligent suggestions and an accurate end result, not to be overly pedantic. There’s only one thing worse than a greengrocer’s apostrophe – and that’s a smug proofreader!
Best Practice Makes Perfect! 171 inspirational ideas to help achieve a perfect practice is priced at £12.75 and is available from www.michellehoskin.com.