Hey Angela, what exactly is it that Simon does?

The work of our copy editors

Our writers are utterly superb, and we will never, ever stop banging on about that.

But when you order your web content from WordHound, it’s not just brilliant writers and a friendly, professional, problem-solving account director you’re getting.

Behind the scenes, you’ll also find an experienced project director and some really rather excellent copy editors.

So what is it that these semi-troglodytic but extraordinarily efficient people actually do?

Well, firstly, assuming it’s an average-sized order, they’ll be the same person, and that person will be Simon. The project director role generally works as follows.

Client brief to writer brief

Angela will have created a client brief based on conversations about what’s needed, the preferred style and tone, the word count, the deadline and so on.

Sometimes the info from the client will be massively detailed and laid out paragraph by paragraph, with subheadings, keywords, and all sorts of other fancy stuff.

Sometimes it’ll just be a few words or a vague idea though, and either of these – or anything in between – are fine. (In fact, some writers thrive on an intricate client brief, while others are happier with plenty of leeway.)

The project director’s first job is to translate the client brief into a writer brief. This might involve removing unnecessary info, but it’s more likely to mean adding extra bits to ensure that the writer has everything they need to get going.

That’s why it’s essential to have a project director who’s spent several years as a content writer. The first question will be, “If I was writing this, would this brief have all the info I’d need to get started?”.

Simon - grinning about copy editing
Picture taken by Tiffany Coates - "The World's Foremost Female Motorcycle Adventurer"

Questions & deadlines

Sometimes, a writer will come up with questions once they get into the job. At this point, they can ask the project director, who can then pass the buck to the account director if they’re unable to answer it themselves.

Once that’s sorted out, the writer’s under way, and the writer’s deadline will have been set to allow plenty of time for proofing and editing before the client’s deadline.

Before that writer deadline hits – and 99.9% of the time, it’s well before – the project director’s inbox will ping, and there it’ll be. Fresh, delicious-smelling content, ready to be proofed and perfected by the copy editor.

Now, because we know our writers either extremely well (to the point where Simon can spot who’s written a piece within a paragraph or two) or pretty well (because new writers don’t get to write your content until we’ve got to know their skills), the editing is usually fairly straightforward.

The editing process

The editor will re-familiarise themselves with the original brief first, and then read it out loud.

This is a great way to spot any weirdnesses, and it’s a perfect method for checking things like comma placement. (If you’re ever worried about whether to use the Oxford comma, try it. And if you are editing your own content, it can be useful to have a checklist to make sure you’ve covered everything.)

During the editing process, words or phrases may be substituted, sentences may be shortened, and the tone may be adjusted slightly. In the unusual event that, after an initial read-through, the editor thinks it’s a bit… wrong, they’ll send it back to the writer for rejigging first.

Tweaking and delivery

Once the content is perfected, we’ll run it through Copyscape to check it’s 100% unique. If there’s something unavoidable in there that nudges the Copyscape score below 100% unique, such as a quote, we’ll let you know.

Finally, the copy editor will do any tweaks needed to the formatting – bullet points, bold subheadings and so on. Bingo! Your copy is ready.

It’ll now be passed over to your account manager, who’ll alert you to the fact that you have something fabulous to read. And of course, if there’s anything in there that you find slightly less fabulous than you’d hoped, we’ll fix it. But the chances of that happening are approximately 0.00000001%. That’s an amazing one in ten billion, probably!

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