Proofreading is the editorial pass done after the completion of a copy edit. A proofread involves comparing copy edits or line-edited material to a new, revised, and formatted version of the same core material. This is done to ensure all the changes were made properly during formatting/typesetting. The proofreader will also look for additional errors that may have been introduced during the revision process, such as typos, formatting issues, and the like that may have slipped through the cracks.
Cold reading is often mistaken for proofreading outside of the publishing world. A cold read is a read-through of the final material to check for any errors that a consumer may notice. Typos, spelling, missing punctuation, duplicate words, missing words, and so on are all things a cold reader will look for as they review the material. Cold reads are typically focused strictly on egregious errors rather than style issues, incorrect nonessential punctuation, etcetera. A heavier cold read can be done to include more types of errors; however, if there is an excessive number of errors, a copy edit might be in order instead.
It is recommended that proofreads and cold reads be done by an editor who has not been involved in the editorial process at previous stages (or at least has not done more than two passes on the project already). That way, the editor can come to the material with fresh eyes and catch things that may have been overlooked at previous stages. But don't worry, we have many pairs of fresh eyes here on the DVE team!
Both proofreads and cold reads are also typically done in hard copy, as the human eye catches more on paper than it does on screen. (Fun fact!) DVE will work with the client to determine whether they would like the edits inputted electronically after they are done on paper or to receive the actual hard-copy edits.
Proofreading and cold reading rates are both invoiced by the hour. Rates are quoted based on a review of sample materials (DVE will request specific materials dependent upon the type of project you'd like quoted), as well as information such as type of project, genre, word count, turnaround time, and more. After our review, we will then provide a potential client with an official quote based on those sample materials, which will include an overall assessment of the work we believe the project will need, how long it might take, and our estimated fee.
Below, please find the common rate ranges for copy editing. Estimated paces reflect 250 words per page, which is the industry standard.
Please note: Double Vision’s rates are based on the standard rates set by the Editorial Freelancers Association.
Estimated pace: 9-13 pages per hour
Estimated pace: 7-11 pages per hour
Estimated pace: 12-17 pages per hour
Estimated pace: 11-16 pages per hour
Estimated pace: 10-15 pages per hour