When we speak, we don’t edit, so we may think writing is the same.
But a good presentation is written in some form, edited, re-edited and rehearsed.
While editing plays a crucial role in preparing a presentation, it’s even more integral to writing a report, document or email because we commit words definitively to paper or the screen.
Several steps used to prepare and edit a presentation, however, can be applied to writing, and editors can apply these steps also to a written work:
-Link the ideas
Editing written text must also include verifying whether the ideas flow nicely.
-Practise out loud, privately
An often overlooked tool when editing written text is reading it out loud, as nuances are often more apparent when spoken.
-Discover and fix any weaknesses
Consider, among others: Are words unnecessarily repeated? Are the right verb tenses used?
-Polish the introduction
Is the introduction of the written piece engaging? Does it preview the content?
-Set it aside, to incubate
Often, setting text aside for several hours, if not for an entire day, and returning to it with a fresh view will reveal edits that should be made.
-Edit and fine tune
Make any changes needed to the written piece one last time.
-Practise in front of others
Give your text to someone else to read, asking for constructive feedback.
An editor serves as a crucial third party in all of these steps.