Substantive editing

Is this service right for you?

Substantive editing (or ‘structural editing’) is suitable if you are developing a new work or adapting an existing work. It involves assessing and shaping material at a draft stage to improve its organisation and content. (If these aspects are complete, see Copyediting instead.)

What is included?

Structural review

  • Is information complete and appropriate? Is additional material required?
  • Is any major rewriting required?
  • Is any rearrangement, expansion or summarising required to achieve the most logical structure?
  • Does the document contain appropriate navigation aids?

Language and style editing

  • Ensure language and form are appropriate to the readership
  • Ensure there is a logical flow and appropriate weighting of discussion
  • Ensure information and arguments are clear and unambiguous
  • Eliminate wordiness, triteness, repetition and inappropriate jargon
  • Improve awkward phrasing
  • Ensure consistency in tone and writing style

Clarity of presentation

  • Check that the presentation is simple and effective
  • Ensure the document title and all headings accurately reflect contents
  • Check appropriateness, placement and clarity of tables and figures
  • Check material in tables and figures against textual references
  • Ensure appropriate referencing is provided
  • Ensure that explanations of symbols, abbreviations and terms are provided.


Pricing is based on the nature of the project. Please contact Lilla to discuss your requirements and request a quote.