Skip to main content

11 Editing Marks Every Writer Needs to Know

Don't make editing your novel harder! With 11 must-know editing symbols you'll be able to decipher the language of editing with help from this free download.

Free Guide to Editing Symbols All Writers Need to Know

Writing a novel is hard, but editing your novel is even harder, especially if you don't know the proper editing symbols. More important, what if you find a critique partner and swap manuscripts and he or she has lines drawn all over and you don't know what the revising and editing symbols mean? (Not to mention that the person probably expects the same type of professionalism in your edit of his or her work as well.) That's why we're here to help.

In this Writer's Digest free download, 11 Editing Symbols All Writers Need to Know, we offer up a printable list of the most common copy editing marks to help you with your editing and revising.

Whether you are self-editing your work or book editing for someone else, use these universal symbols to help make that task easier.

Enter your email to join the Writer's Digest newsletter and get your FREE download!

Revision Techniques: 11 Editing Marks Every Writer Should Know

How to Edit a Book: Common Editing Marks

You can spend hours reading books on revision tips and manuscript editing, but if you don't know the fundamental editing symbols then you'll start out at a disadvantage.

If you hire an editor to review a hard copy of your work, he or she will likely use nearly all of these editing marks (unless you amazingly wrote a manuscript without any mistakes! And if so, kudos to you!).

Chances are when you get your manuscript back from your critique partner or editor or publisher, it will have circles and carrots and squiggly lines throughout it. These revision strategies only make sense if you know what all the red ink means. With this FREE download you'll be sure to have a clear understanding on how to use each of these common editing marks.

So get moving on your novel editing and download the 11 Editing Symbols All Writers Need to Know for FREE today!

Enter your email to join the Writer's Digest newsletter and get your FREE download!

Some of our favorite uncommon copy editing marks.
How to Write Through Grief and Find Creativity

How to Write Through Grief and Find Creativity

When author Diana Giovinazzo found herself caught in the storm of grief, doing what she loved felt insurmountable. Here, she shares how she worked through her grief to find her creativity again.

writer's digest wd presents

WD Presents: Our Brand-New Digital Guide, 6 WDU Courses, and More!

This week, we’re excited to announce our new “Get Published in 2022” digital guide, six new WDU courses, and more!

5 Tips for Keeping Your Writing Rolling

5 Tips for Keeping Your Writing Rolling

The occasional bump in the writing process is normal, but it can be difficult to work through. Here, author Genevieve Essig shares five ways to keep your writing rolling.

From Script

How to Write from a Place of Truth and Desire and Bending the Rules in Screenwriting (From Script)

In this week’s round up brought to us by Script magazine, exclusive interviews with screenwriter Steven Knight (Spencer), Mike Mills (C'mon C'mon), and David Mitchell (Matrix Resurrection). Plus, how to utilize your vulnerability in your writing and different perspectives on screenwriting structure.

Writing Mistakes Writers Make: Forgetting To Read

Writing Mistakes Writers Make: Forgetting To Read

The Writer's Digest team has witnessed many writing mistakes over the years, so this series helps identify them for other writers (along with correction strategies). This week's mistake is forgetting to read.

Tapping Your Memories for Emotional Truths on the Page

Tapping Your Memories for Emotional Truths on the Page

Sharing even a fraction of our feelings with our characters will help our stories feel more authentic. Here, Kris Spisak explains how to tap into our memories to tell emotional truths on the page.

Poetic Forms

Trinet: Poetic Forms

Poetic Form Fridays are made to share various poetic forms. This week, we look at the trinet, a seven-line form based on word count.

Tammye Huf: On Real Love That Sparked Inspiration

Tammye Huf: On Real Love That Sparked Inspiration

Debut novelist Tammye Huf discusses how her own familial love story inspired her historical fiction novel, A More Perfect Union.

Announcing the Second Annual Personal Essay Awards Winners

Announcing the Second Annual Personal Essay Awards Winners

Congratulations to the winners of the second annual Writer's Digest Personal Essay Awards!