ESL Editing Services: Book Editing

"…my expectations were surpassed. I was happy with the sample edit, but the full edit went beyond that. I have worked through half the edited book and haven’t found an error; the wise comments on plot, character, etc. have really impressed me."

ESL Editing Services: Books

Writing a book is not particularly difficult, with enough effort. Writing a good book, one that engages the reader in a fascinating world of possibility is a much more demanding task, if you add writing said book in a foreign language, the difficulty becomes almost insurmountable. Fortunately, ESL editing services exist that are capable of guiding authors carefully and competently through the rigors of the creative process. Typographical errors such as split prepositions or spelling errors are natural, even when writing in your native language, and so doing so in a foreign language such as English is inevitable, and going back over work to correct it too diligently carries the risk of debilitating the creative process, leading to the development of ‘writer’s block’, stymieing progress. Handing off a partial draft allows an author to focus on continuing the story they wish to tell without concerning themselves with the rough state of the work they have already completed. Giving an editor a completed draft allows an author to step back from a work slightly and come at the work with a fresh perspective after the editor has made suggestions for improvements.

This becomes especially vital when writing in a foreign language, as maintaining readers’ engagement with and interest in a work is vital, and the use of unnatural expressions or simple spelling errors will shatter their engagement and lower their evaluation of the work, even in spite of how interested they may have been in the story prior to noticing the incongruity. Becoming familiar enough with a language such as English to such a degree where this sort of error becomes immediately noticeable can take years, if not decades of study and acclimatization to an English-speaking country; getting a novel to an acceptable standard, then collaborating on the project with an ESL editing service is a much more practical solution.

New words and terms are often introduced to language through works of fiction. Isaac Asimov famously invented the term ‘robotics’, though he maintains that he thought that it already existed as a term when he first used it. As such, it is perfectly acceptable (and often absolutely necessary) to create and use terms in fiction for things that do not exist, particularly when the setting is the future or an alternate reality. The problem is that the name for the term must seem natural both in terms of the general language, and to the specific context in which the item or concept exists, and the term must be employed consistently. An ESL editing service can provide guidance on matters such as non-existent concepts that authors may find both informative and useful.

Of course, ESL book editing services also extend to non-fiction, and whether writing a historical account of an event, biography, pop science, sociological examination, supplementary how-to guide for new technology or craft such as origami and cooking or any other sort of non-fiction work, such services will customarily employ native-speaking specialists in the specific area required to ensure that your work receives the attention of the editor best suited for the required subject.

Books that list a set of instructions require a particular form of succinct clarity so that non-specialists can follow what the author intends. Meanwhile, historical accounts and biographies require a level of description in the language used that allows the reader to form a mental image of the scene or event being described without getting bogged down in details such as the exact level of cloud cover for a particular battle, or the precise time in the afternoon that a celebrity happened to leave for work on a particular day. Such over-fastidiousness is time consuming, and may clash with other details if, as is often the case, it has been invented by the author in a poorly judged attempt to expand on an event or scene to make it seem more important in the mind of the reader. Pop science and examinations of sociological concepts often take extremely complicated subjects such as quantum entanglement or the prisoner’s dilemma and attempt to describe their phenomena, the reasons behind them and their results in a relaxed, conversational style to facilitate the comprehension of non-experts. Doing so requires not only a comprehensive background in the field being described, but an ability to write in a style similar to fiction writers, to engage the audience. ESL editing services are able to call upon editors with specialized experience in the area the author is exploring, whether vegan cookery or 15th century weaponry such as the arquebus, and experience of a variety of styles of editing, to suit the audience the author wishes to address.