The Best Editing Technique

You probably already know this, but I’ll tell you anyway…

When you write, write. When you edit, edit. Try not to mix the two.

If you try to edit yourself while you’re writing, your brain will get all jammed up and you’ll experience that dreaded disease called “writer’s block.”

That’s because writing and editing involve two different parts of your brain. One is creative; the other is critical.


With that in mind, how should you go about editing your sales letter once it’s finished?

Naturally, read through your copy to see if there are any misspellings, blatant grammar mistakes, grossly confusing parts, etc. Change whatever you feel needs to be changed.

This is good.

What’s better is this:

Read Your Copy Out Loud!

Print out the copy, close your study door, stand up and start reading aloud.

You’ll probably feel goofy… a little bit uncomfortable. But who cares?

You’re alone and nobody is watching.

So you’re reading out loud.

What’s going to happen is you’re going to get tripped up… by what YOU wrote!

If you ever have to slow down your pace of reading — or you literally have to stop reading because you can’t figure out what you wrote — then that’s a part of your copy that you need to improve.

You see, when you read quietly to yourself, you read faster and tend to skip over things that would normally trip you up. But when you read out loud, your reading pace slows w-a-y down. You’re literally forced to pay attention to bad writing.

And you’re forced to change it.

So next time you’ve got some copy you’re ready to edit, take the extra time and effort to read it out loud. It will most definitely be worth it.

-Ryan M. Healy

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Ryan Healy

Ryan Healy is a freelance copywriter, list manager, and the author of Speed Writing for Nonfiction Writers. Since 2002, he has worked with scores of clients, including Agora Financial, Lombardi Publishing, and Contrarian Profits. He writes a popular blog about copywriting, advertising, and business growth, has been featured in publications like Feed Front magazine, and has been published on sites like,, and

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