About Hazard Editing Services

Hazard Editing is reopening for one to two projects a month. We now charge $4 per 1k words for editing and $3 per 1k words for proofreading. Feel free to contact Lisa Hazard at lisacathazard (at) yahoo (dot) com. We offer a free five-page sample edit so you can try us out.

Thursday, March 31, 2011

More on Dashes

Well-built, not well built. If an adjective describes something with an adjective, there is often a dash.

Topaz-eyed cat.

Two-tailed cat.

Clean-haired cat.

Well-built Osho-cat (Osho is the name of the cat, the dash is for cuteness. Can be or not be used).

Heavy-bellied cat was pregnant.

Bullied cat. No dash.

Tuesday, March 29, 2011

Dashes Between Words

This is a tough one to cover. I think it takes a lot of reading to get used to when to use them. For example, the cat doesn't have blue green eyes, she has blue-green eyes.

There are literally gobs of times when you should use a dash between words. Some phrases are built-in (like built-in!) for dashes, such as thirty-five. All numbers in the 20s, 30s, 40s, etc. have a dash. Forty-four. Seventy-seven. When you add hundreds or thousands, you do not use dashes except for the smaller numbers. For example, one hundred thirty-five cats are too many to have in an apartment. Two thousand ninety-six cats will breed and make eight thousand fifty-six cats.

The best way to learn how to use dashes between words is to read and pay attention to when you see them. Your brain will absorb the examples and your writing dashes between words will improve.

Tuesday, March 22, 2011

Comma, but...

Whenever you have a "but" in a sentence, you should precede it with a comma.


The cat jumped but didn't make the top of the bookcase.


The cat jumped, but didn't make the top of the bookcase.

Wednesday, March 16, 2011

How Do You Know if You Need Proofreading or Editing?

Usually, proofreading comes after editing. If you feel confident in your editing skills, grammar and punctuation, then you probably just need proofreading. If you've already had your book edited, then you need proofreading.

If you are a new writer and don't feel confident in your book's overall grammar, then you need editing. If you are an experienced writer and have heard people tell you to get your book edited, then you probably need editing.

If you use my free five page edit, I'll tell you honestly which I think you need. I can usually tell from five pages. Don't be shy if you're not sure - drop an email.

Friday, March 4, 2011

Dialog Tags and Punctuation

Here are a few things to take note of when writing dialog tags.


"That dog better stay out of our yard." Said the cat.


"That dog better stay out of our yard," said the cat.

Sentences in dialog where you have the character's dialog tag should end in a comma, question mark, or exclamation point. Then the quotes. Then starting in lower-case, finish the thought.


"He's a wimp. I can puff my tail and he'll whimper back to his mommy," said the other cat licking his shoulder.


"He's a wimp. I can puff my tail and he'll whimper back to his mommy," said the other cat, licking his shoulder.

Put a comma after the tag if the character does something.


"I'm scared of that dog," the third cat said, as she put her ears back.


"I'm scared of that dog," the third cat said as she put her ears back.

If the action after the tag continues the character's thought with words like "as" or "and," there is no comma.