Editing Tips and Tricks

The following was created by Stephanie Fletcher, Folio literary editor from Spring 2017 to Spring 2019. 

These are some tips I’ve gathered across my time on Folio, and I hope you, dear reader, are able to take these and make them your own. I am a firm believer that every person will have a different process, and that’s okay! We all have the same goal, and that is to provide a voice and platform for the students at Salt Lake Community College. Enjoy!

  1. Try and maintain the writer’s voice! This is the most important part of my process. Critically analyze the text and try to determine if something is a stylistic choice before you start messing with it. This is especially important for poetry. Also, keep in mind that their first language might not be your own. Do your best to think before you fix.
  2. Everyone has a different opinion on how body text should be formatted. There are two major ways to do it; putting a line between each paragraph, or indenting the first line of each paragraph. If you decide to go the indentation route, AVOID THE TAB BUTTON. The size of the indent is dependant on the size of the paragraph. Between a .3 and .5 indent is ideal.
  3. Dialogue can be tricky. Each new speaker needs their own paragraph. If an action is separate from dialogue (e.g. He gasped. “No!”) the action is its own sentence. If the action IS dialogue (e.g. He gasped, “No!”) the action and dialogue are one sentence… Make sense?
  4. Don’t be afraid to research and peek around to see what other editors are doing. The best part about this experience is that you don’t HAVE to be a professional. Learning and growing with the magazine was one of my favorite parts, and I hope it becomes one of your favorite parts too!

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