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Thread: How to give reply to reviewer and how to reach to them.. Please explain


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Permlink Replies: 20 - Pages: 2 [ Previous | 1 2 ] - Last Post: Jan 15, 2018 3:07 AM Last Post By: Duane Dingle
thrasherll

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Re: How to give reply to reviewer and how to reach to them.. Please explain
Posted: Dec 24, 2017 5:21 PM   in response to: Duane Dingle in response to: Duane Dingle
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Both writing and proofreading/editing are two skills at which computers will never be better than humans. Language is complex, full of nuances, many words have more than one meaning and can serve as more than one part of speech. New words are created all the time. Slang doesn't necessarily follow grammar rules and neither does dialogue.

I've done proofreading in the past for two publishers (for pay) and I have to admit I was shocked at some of the errors I found since these were books under contract to trad publishers (one small, one fairly big). One editor thanked me profusely for correcting the Spanish lines in a book; I'm not fluent in Spanish but I know enough to know the difference between ciudad and cuidado but the writer and editor obviously didn't. I made several corrections to the occasional Spanish dialogue but that's the only one I remember: I had a good laugh when a character seeing a dangerous situation shouted "City!" instead of "Watch out!" I had never mentioned to the editor that I knew any Spanish and possibly she would have had someone else go over those lines if I hadn't corrected them. One can only hope. I did recommend having a native Spanish speaker check them.

I see a lot of red underlines when I'm working on my current manuscript in Word. Sometimes the correction is valid because I make my fair share of typos, sometimes it isn't, and sometimes I can't even figure out what it thinks is wrong. Several months ago I posted here about a correction Word suggested: the sentence was something like He was really mad. Word's spell checker wanted me to change mad to madding or madden. I'm sure that programs that are specifically designed to edit the written word don't make errors quite as silly as that one, but I still don't think a computer will ever be able to deal with all the quirks and inconsistencies and inventiveness of the English language.

L. L. Thrasher
C. Gold

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Re: How to give reply to reviewer and how to reach to them.. Please explain
Posted: Dec 24, 2017 7:17 PM   in response to: thrasherll in response to: thrasherll
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Word wanted to hyphenate cubes as cu-bes since it fell across a line (fully justified paragraph). I'm like, um, since when is cubes two syllables? I wound up rewording it because no, that's not getting hyphenated in MY document. Word also hates more X, like more fun. It wants you to use funner and drop the more, but that's not how people speak in my neck of the woods.

On the flip side, Word did red squiggle a word that I had a comma after and I'll admit, it didn't need that comma. So most of the time Word knows best. But you really need to understand grammar to be able to tell it to shove off when it gets something wrong. And it will get stuff wrong. So will the automated grammar tools, though mostly they miss stuff.
Duane Dingle

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Re: How to give reply to reviewer and how to reach to them.. Please explain
Posted: Dec 24, 2017 7:34 PM   in response to: thrasherll in response to: thrasherll
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I agree with everything your saying about proofing being a human job. A program can help to catch some errors along the way but it is far from perfect. And I loved that you mention that the dialogue doesn't necessarily follow grammar rules and it did bother me when the proofer of my first book would correct the grammar in some of the dialogue. I tell them now not to touch the dialogue. The character's personality comes out in the way he/she/it speaks and it's super important in character development to have them speak a particular way -especially for one of MY characters. My proofing requirements almost never involves rewriting sentences, usually just fixing the small errors created by all the rewrites (verb tenses, missing period, quotations marks and such.) If a sentence or paragraph doesn't make sense, I appreciate them simply telling me rather than trying to guess at what I was trying to say and rewrite it for me. But there have been some real doozies of mistakes created in my many rewrites, some embarrassing and some just funny ones, and when it comes to my proofers, since I use inexpensive ones and am too worried about errors in my final product, I purposely place errors in the manuscript to get an idea of how well they did -Peddled for pedaled (Grammarly never caught that) and some British spellings instead of my novel's standard American ones- and I use three proofers consecutively and then proof the finally manuscript myself one last time after taking a month away from it. My rule-of-thumb, since I get what I pay for, is if a proofer finds 100 mistakes, there are that many remaining.

Strangely with using Word, I don't get many red underlines outside of the false error on punctuation, but when I do, they are usually for passive sentences (I really should turn that option off) since I do occasionally use them intentionally for the rhythm of the read. I know there is a rule that they should be avoided, but I tend to think the rule should be changed to be something like "used seldom."
C. Gold

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Re: How to give reply to reviewer and how to reach to them.. Please explain
Posted: Dec 25, 2017 12:12 AM   in response to: Duane Dingle in response to: Duane Dingle
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It blue squiggles the passive. I have it turned on just to make sure I'm not using it too often. I also prefer having a variety of sentence structures on the page. What I don't want is repeated words or phrases, and that's where a tool like ProWriteAid comes in handy.

Sneaky adding errors to see how good your proofers are!
Scott Reid

Posts: 46
Registered: 04/21/17
Re: How to give reply to reviewer and how to reach to them.. Please explain
Posted: Jan 3, 2018 7:17 AM   in response to: Duane Dingle in response to: Duane Dingle
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Before I even considered using Grammarly, I went through the book 6 times doing edits and rewrites. Now that I've done Grammarly and AutoCrit, I'm going through it again (and still finding tweaks and the occasional mistake) and have finally turned it over to my beta readers.

Grammarly is not a program to use first thing after finishing your initial write. It's a program to use AFTER you've gone through it a bunch of times and are STARTING to polish the final product.
Duane Dingle

Posts: 129
Registered: 06/04/14
Re: How to give reply to reviewer and how to reach to them.. Please explain
Posted: Jan 3, 2018 7:38 AM   in response to: Scott Reid in response to: Scott Reid
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Scott Reid wrote:
Before I even considered using Grammarly, I went through the book 6 times doing edits and rewrites. Now that I've done Grammarly and AutoCrit, I'm going through it again (and still finding tweaks and the occasional mistake) and have finally turned it over to my beta readers.

Grammarly is not a program to use first thing after finishing your initial write. It's a program to use AFTER you've gone through it a bunch of times and are STARTING to polish the final product.

I agree it should be used AFTER the final draft, hence why I wrote, "I have used Grammarly once and it was ok, but I had only used it to proof my book before sending it to the proofer/s to make their life a bit easier." But, I would use it AFTER polishing the novel as I consider that a rewrite. I rewrite my almost 100K drafts no less than a dozen times (part of those rewrites is to keep it down to under 100K words) and it takes me a year to even get to the point where I feel good enough about it to say it's ready for proofing. Grammarly is ok, but in no way should be depended on.
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