It amuses me to see how many people have months to write a paper, an article, or a book, and yet wait until the 11th hour to get it edited. In the past few weeks, I’ve received several Ph.D. proposals and dissertations to edit, many of which were due the following week or week after. A few have only needed formatting and cleaning up, but others have required major rewrites and reorganization.
Few people realize that early editing is key. Once the outline is completed and a first draft has been completed, that is the time to get an editor, simply to verify that the paper is on track, to catch errors in organization and presentation of facts early on. Otherwise, it’s like building a car and completing it, down to the leather seats and the hi-fidelity sound system, only to discover that the two front wheels point forward and the two rear wheels point sideways. All that extra work amping up the interior for nothing, because you have to go back to the drawing board on the initial design.
Design, check your design, refine your design, then build. That’s the key to success. Same for editing. Organize, draft, check your draft through editing, rewrite, and do a final edit. Simple.