Do you like making your own schedule and choosing your own projects? Are you someone who doesn’t mind being home all day and is probably also a night owl? Chances are you’ve thought about being a freelancer, perhaps for design, editing, or marketing. The publishing world, like many other industries, is increasingly relying on outsourcing […]
Sometimes when a story breaks the traditional rules—by, for example, skipping around in time or being told by more than one narrator—the conventional layout of a book interior is not enough: visual design is necessary to help it make sense.
For many aspiring freelance editors, proofreading is the best (and in some cases, the only) way to get a foot in the door. But what are proofreaders actually looking for?
I refuse to believe we can’t move past the paperback designs of the past with their jumble of chunky fonts, strange color palettes, and, dare I say, unappealing illustrations of aliens.
No matter how brilliant a piece of writing is, if it doesn’t know who the audience should be or doesn’t give enough context about its subject, the writing fails to be read, understood, and shared. It fails to communicate. The same holds true for book design.
Unlike copyediting, which focuses purely on the text, proofreaders engage with the book after the interior has been designed and laid out. That means that in addition to keeping an eye out for egregious grammar errors and typos, the proofreader is focused on aesthetics: eliminating typographic gaffes such as widows, orphans, and runts; marking bad breaks and word stacks; and ensuring design elements such as subheads and running heads are handled consistently.