What Do You Need? The difference between an editor, a proofreader, and a writer...

What is the difference between editing, proofreading, and writing? Actually, there is a big difference. Here’s how to know what you are looking for and how to differentiate between them.

Let’s start with editing. There are a myriad of levels of editing, but for the sake of a shorter blog post, we’ll focus on editing in general (I will cover the different types in a future blog post). Editing is defined as to prepare (written material) for publication by correcting, condensing, or otherwise modifying it. Editing is what you want if you have written a book or blog post and need someone to look through it, make changes, check for wording errors, agreement, punctuation, agreement, fact-checking, style errors, etc. They will change any wording that isn’t correct and rewrite certain parts.

Proofreading is defined as read (printer's proofs or other written or printed material) and mark any errors. Typically, this is what you do with your last draft. As an author, you have already written all material and have had it edited already. You have fixed agreement errors, found missing or incorrect words, and changed any wording that didn’t fit or was incorrect. You need someone to read through your work and correct any last-minute mistakes, such as missing or incorrect punctuation or last minute changes before publication.

Writing seems as though it would be straight forward, but there are a lot of writers out there seeking an editor’s help when, if fact, they actually need someone to help them write. The definition of writing is the activity or occupation of composing text for publication. Let’s say you write a book and want someone to look over your first draft. You feel that it is perfect, yet your editor makes more corrections and comments to help you reword most of it. You just ask them to take your ideas and rewrite it to make sense. Then, you are hiring them as a writer.

If you are an author who has a head full of ideas, but just can’t seem to put them to paper, you may benefit from hiring a ghostwriter. This is someone who takes your ideas and puts them into words. We are called ghostwriters because it is your name that is published as the author. Again, we are behind the scenes helping you look good. We take your ideas or your topics and write something up for you to look over. It could be something as small as a blog post or something as big as a book. I personally know of many authors who hired ghostwriters to help them.

An editor, proofreader, or ghostwriter is hired to improve the author’s work and make them  shine. It is our job to be behind the scenes and make YOU, as the writer, look professional. As the writer, you want to get a message across. A great editor will help you do just that.




Whatever you are looking for, most editors want to help you as the author. Prices vary between the level of work, the experience of the editor, the type of editing (proofreading, writing, etc.), and whether they work as a freelance editor or work for a corporation or publishing house. Some have a consistent rate, others, like myself, do this on the side and want to work within everyone’s budget. Hiring the right editor to fit your needs is essential and usually, if an editor is not a correct fit for you, we will let you know and point you to someone who is.

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