I hadn’t been all that aware of it, but I suppose now that I should have: Just as some folks confuse words that sound alike for each other, not everyone has the same definitions for some of them. Case in point:

Define the following terms:  Proofreader, Copy Editor, Developmental EditorGhostwriter, Collaborator, Editorial Consultant and Writer.

About half the time I put in a bid on an “editing” job, I find I’m setting myself up, either for a whole lot more work than I had planned on for the compensation, or for a very unhappy client! (I’m now rebuilding my Rate Sheet to indicate how those roles differ from (and mesh with) one another, and how much I’m willing to perform them for while trying to make a living.)

Let’s do a little definition-work here (NOTE: I’ve performed in all of these roles at one time or another in my journeys, and am still willing to do so for the right price!). Comments are as always most welcome.

Proofreader: Once upon a time, back in the days of metal typesetting and printshops, this term was used to describe a person who sat hunched over two versions of the same material: an original (which had already been edited and otherwise smoothed out, so that it represented exactly how the content was to be represented in the final printing); and a printed-out version of what the typesetter had input from that original, in the typeface and font required.

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