My given name is Zoe, derived from the ancient Greek for life. As a girl, fascinated with words, I came across zoetic in an old dictionary. A rare or archaic word with the same derivation as my name, zoetic means living or vital. Also from the same derivation is zoetrope, the Victorian toy you see below.
Words on the page, of themselves, are little more than patterns of ink on paper and can be just as dry to read. Like a zoetrope, my aim as a writer and editor is to give life and vitality to black squiggles. Words ought to sparkle, shine, and move me to laughter or tears before I send them out into the world. There I want them to sing and dance in the mind and imagination of readers.
How could I call my business anything but Zoetic Words?
As a reader, I want to escape into a story and don’t want to return until I absolutely must. This kind of escapism is not unusual. Life is not ideal. We can’t always afford to take ourselves away from the life we have. Books and movies give us a more affordable way to live a different life, if only for a few hours. When we escape like this, the last thing we want is to be dropped out of our fantasy world and brought back to reality with a thump.
When editing, my job is to look for things which will drop a reader out of the story. Some of these can be:
spelling, grammar and punctuation errors;
characters acting ‘out of character’ or stupidly;
awkward phrasing, lack of clarity;
breaking the rules of the story world;
breaking the rules of the genre (killing the hero in a romance story).
These and others are dangerous to the career of the writer because once a reader is ‘dumped’ out of the story, they might:
remember all the things they should be doing instead of reading;
get so frustrated they throw the book at the wall; and/or
never forgive the writer and write them on their blacklist.
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A Standard Proofread may be all you need if you are an experienced writer with polished copy ready for publication. I can be another pair of eyes to find literals (typos), check for mistakes, consistency, basic formatting. Read More »
Copyediting includes all the checks of proofreading with additional suggestions for improvement of syntax, phrasing and sentence construction and order, word usage, continuity errors, completeness of front and endmatter. Read More »