Monday, April 22, 2013

Spotlight: David Gargaro

As a Consulting Editor, I provide writing, editing, consulting and project management services. My goal is to ensure the accuracy, clarity and integrity of your message.

1st  How did you get started and why?

When I first graduated from the University of Toronto in 1992, my goal was to become an actuary. However, I was finding it difficult to get my foot in the door, as the job market was rather tight and opportunities for new graduates without experience were scarce. So, I started looking for other ways to earn income, and that led me to a freelance proofreading position with a publisher of law resources.
This experience gave me the experience to get other freelance editing assignments, which included editing math textbooks for an educational publisher. I found that I had a skill for copy editing, and I truly enjoyed working on different materials every day. After working as a freelance editor for several years, I had the opportunity to take on full-time employment with a major publisher. However, I discovered that I preferred the freedom and variety offered by working as a freelance editor, so I returned to freelance editing and have not looked back.

Over the course of nearly 20 years, I have had the opportunity to write and edit a wide variety of materials for many different companies in various industries. I cannot imagine doing anything else except what I am doing today.

2nd  What tips would you give to business professionals on editing their own writing?

First, revise the content and organization. Rearrange the order of your information such that it would make the most sense to your reader. Add new main ideas or develop existing ideas more thoroughly to make sure that your message is clear, interesting and complete. Remove any unnecessary or duplicate information to make your writing more focused and applicable to the reader. Make sure that all information is accurate and current. Look at the introduction and the conclusion to make sure that they are fulfilling their roles. The introduction should capture your reader’s attention and clearly indicate the point of the document. The conclusion should summarize your main points and effectively conclude your argument. Consider the tone of your message; it should be consistent throughout your document and appeal to your audience.

Second, revise paragraphs and individual sentences. Each paragraph should contain an identifiable topic sentence, and all sentences within that paragraph should support the topic. Your opening paragraph should contain a well-defined thesis statement. Of course, all paragraphs and sentences should be grammatically correct, contain the proper language and tone, and be consistent in tone and tense. Each sentence should contain a single thought that supports the content of the paragraph. 

Finally, perform an effective edit of the entire document. Editing involves correcting errors in word choice, spelling and punctuation. Remove unnecessary words, jargon and clich├ęs to make sure that all words are effectively used. Check all spelling to make sure that it is consistent throughout, and verify the proper use of punctuation. Have someone else read your document to get a fresh perspective and help with catching overlooked errors.

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