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					    The seven Cs of editing

Paul Mundy
The best writing

   The best writing is rewriting
   Best-selling authors go through many drafts
   When you have finished writing
       Leave the draft for a day or two
       Come back to it with fresh eyes
       Give it to someone else for comments
       Ask an editor for help
The Seven Cs of editing

Go through the manuscript section by section,
paragraph by paragraph. Check…
    1.   Is the content relevant?
    2.   Is it correct?
    3.   Is it clear?
    4.   Is it complete?
    5.   Is it concise?
    6.   Is it concrete?
    7.   Is it consistent?
1       Is the content relevant?

   Is the overall topic relevant to the audience?
     No? Rewrite it – or choose a new topic

   Does the manuscript deal with an important, widespread
     Change the focus

   Does it tell the readers something they already know?
     Consider deleting this info

   Is each item of info useful and relevant to the readers?
     Change it or delete it

   Is the information specific enough to be useful?
     If it’s too general, sharpen it by providing details
Rural Land Administration, STDM and the potential for
Enumeration tool (The case of Amhara Region)
Ethiopia is located in the Horn of Africa, bordered by the
Sudan on the west, Somalia and Djibouti on the East,
Eritrea on the North and Kenya on the South. Ethiopia
covers an area of 1.14 million square Kilometers. The
country has diversified geography that range from Ras
Dejen (4620m above sea level) to the Afar depression
(Kobar sink-110 m.a.s.l). The total population is close to 80
million and some 85% are still living in the rural areas
where by primarily gets its livelihood directly or indirectly
from land. ( Women account for 48% of
the total population while 20% of the rural households are
supposed to be headed by women. (ESIF 2008).
2        Is it correct?

   Is the information truthful and accurate?
   Are the statements scientifically justifiable?
   Are the spelling, grammar and punctuation
       Eliminate the problems
Tsetse fly
About 10 million km2 of sub saharan Africa has
difficulties in fully exploiting the agricultural potentisl of
the region due to the prevalence of tsetse fly iwhich
transmits trypanosomiasis. Trypanosomiuasis causes
livestock death and greatly reduces production. On area
seriously affected by Trypanoosomiasis is the Konso
region in Ethiopia.
3        Is it clear?

   Will the reader be able to understand the
    information easily?
       Are there scientific terms or jargon that can be made
       Get rid of the jargon
   Are the paragraphs and sentences too long?
       Shorten them
       Delete unnecessary words
       Split sentences into parts
   Is the language too formal?
       Make it more conversational
Land certification
The present land certification system, despite innovative in
a number of aspects, limits itself totally to administrative
records which lacks basic spatial framework. The situation
basically calls for the urgent need to look in to an
implementable and affordable solution as the current
cadastral surveying and mapping is found to be expensive
and time taking considering the big geography and large
population of the nation.
4        Is it complete?

   Is there enough information to be useful?
       Eg, could the reader use the technology
        successfully after following the instructions?
   Are any important items omitted?
   Are all the steps in a process covered in
    enough detail?
       Add the missing information
Watering the tree nursery
This should be twice a day (morning and evening).
Apart from quantity, quality of water is crucial in
drylands. 20-30 litres of water per 1000 seedlings. To
encourage watering, establish a vegetable garden at
the back of the nursery (people will always water the
5        Is it concise?

   Does it unnecessarily repeat information?
   Does it use ten words when two will do?
       Delete the unneeded words
   Is any information unnecessary?
       Cut it out
The energetic use of biomass has traditionally been a major
source of energy worldwide. Even today about 11 percent of
the world’s annual primary energy supply are based on
biomass use, with much larger fractions in most developing
countries. On the one hand the traditional use of firewood
constitutes still the largest part of biomass consumption.
Nevertheless in many cases firewood cannot be assumed a
renewable source because of its overuse causing the
destruction of remaining wood resources. On the other hand
so called modern bioenergy makes up an increasing part of
the consumption. Modern bioeneregy in this context means
not only a sustainable (and therefore renewable) use of
biomass resources but as well an efficient direct use (e.g.
for improved stoves) or conversion to energy carriers as
electricity or solid, liquid and gaseous fuels.
6         Is it concrete?

   Does the manuscript say…
       When a particular technology or policy is appropriate?
       When it should not be used (eg, on which soils, at what
   Does it give an indication of costs and benefits?
       But don’t provide price info if they change quickly
   After reading, will the reader be able to put the
    recommendations into practice?
       Or is more information needed?
       Provide the missing info
7        Is it consistent?

   Does the same word mean the same thing in
    different parts of the text?
   Is the style consistent?
       Eg, are bullets or numbers used correctly in lists?
       Are the headings at the correct levels?
   Is the level of language the same
       Not simple language in one part but technical in

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