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Your CAP and structure edit worked at the macro level of the document. You made sure you included all the right ideas, the correct legal analysis, great descriptive headings, gave the reader a useful roadmap, and used the stress positions in each paragraph effectively. Now you are ready to move on to the micro level.


In this layer, you edit for continuity or flow of your ideas because your insightful analysis or compelling argument falls flat if the reader cannot follow you easily.

Improve Your Passenger's Experience. Test Out Your Continuity Navigation System.

To minimize jarring and confusing stops, turns, and reversals and to maximize the connecting links that move the reader forward to your document's destination, you have 2 main editing tasks. Try them out.

Proper Signals, Connecting Roads, and Bridges

Evaluate:


Direct Routes: Avoiding Ditches, Detours, Road Blocks, and Reversing Direction

Eliminate:


Try These Useful Continuity Strategies:

Before you do anything about editing for continuity, start with a clean version of your document that incorporates the changes you made in your structure edit.


Transition Traps

Have you used too many transition words or phrases?
  • Unnecessary transitions become word clutter or filler.
Are your transition words and phrases in the same place in each sentence?
  • The reader will see the pattern very quickly and will be distracted from the content. You pretty much hypnotize your reader.
Did you us the same transition words and phrases?
  • Don't bore your reader – here is where you can explore some synonyms.
Do your transitions do the job?
  • Don't say in contrast or however, if you are not actually changing direction.
Did you put any transitions in the wrong place?
  • Transition words have stronger impact as the first words or clause of the sentence. They have a milder impact in the middle of the sentence.
  • Don't waste the last sentence in a paragraph on something that should go in the first sentence of the next paragraph. Instead, use the last sentence to emphasise the main idea of the paragraph and leave the new idea for the topic sentence in the next paragraph.
Have you used paragraph and sentence level links?
  • Pick up a key word from the previous sentence to connect the ideas. This is particularly useful to connect topic sentences to the previous paragraph.
Did you use acronyms, thinking they would speed the reader up?
  • They just slow the reader down by making the reader go back in the text and look up unfamiliar acronyms.

    What questions will you add to your personal editing checklist to help you review for Continuity?