Home > The Writing Process > The Final Draft

The Final Draft

By: Angelique Caffrey - Updated: 26 Oct 2010 | comments*Discuss
Final Draft; Editor; Editors; Edit;

You've long since finished your first draft and the rewriting process is complete. Now, it's time to work on the final draft of your writing project.

Truly, working on the final draft is an exciting time for any author. Like a marathon runner, the end of the race is nearing and you know that all your hard work is going to pay off soon.

At this point, your article, novel, short story, or essay's elements are intact, but you need to make the last adjustments to your piece. Below, we'll examine a few of the ways you can add polish before turning in your document to your editor, supervisor, or publisher.

Spell Check

Nothing detracts from a manuscript more than a misspelled word. Too many writers rely solely on their computer software to "catch" spelling errors; however, nothing beats the human eye. (Keep a dictionary handy!)

Similarly, make sure that any individual or company names are spelled correctly. Sources will not be pleased if their names or the names of their organisations are wrong.


At this point in your writing process, grammatical mistakes should be few, but that's no reason to assume that they couldn't possibly occur. Examine your sentence structure throughout the document and make adjustments where necessary.

Word Count

If you are expected to turn in an 800-word article and you currently have 1,400 words, you need to use the final draft process as a time to remove any extraneous materials. Though you may be hesitant to delete sections of your piece, it's better to do it yourself than to have an editor put your work aside because it didn't match his or her needs. (If you truly cannot bring yourself to make deletions, give your editor a call and find out if a longer article would fit his or her needs.)

Fact Checking

If your essay includes sources, websites, or quotes, you will want to make sure they are accurate before handing in your assignment. Though most magazines and newspapers have fact checkers on staff, do it yourself first. After all, your name will be on the article; would you want it to be associated with something less than accurate?

Source Information

Some editors will request that all source information (for fact checking purposes) be included when you hand in your final draft. Make sure you provide your editor with any data, including website addresses, telephone numbers, and book titles.

Style Check

The style you should use will differ depending on the publication for which you're writing and the type of product you're submitting. If you're not familiar with the various styles, it's worth it to purchase a book to ensure that your document follows the requested format and isn't rejected on a technicality.


Give your document the once-over to ensure that it flows from beginning to end. If you feel too "close" to do so, ask a trusted friend or colleague to read it as a favour to you. At this point, it should be tight; if it's not, go back and make adjustments where necessary.

After your final draft has been cleaned, sanded, and freshly lacquered, it's time for the moment of truth. Print it out, attach it to an email, or fax it. Breathe a sigh of relief, get a cup of coffee or tea, and start working on your next assignment.

You might also like...
Share Your Story, Join the Discussion or Seek Advice..
Why not be the first to leave a comment for discussion, ask for advice or share your story...

If you'd like to ask a question one of our experts (workload permitting) or a helpful reader hopefully can help you... We also love comments and interesting stories

(never shown)
(never shown)
(never shown)
(never shown)
Enter word:
Latest Comments
  • emz
    Re: Writing a Narrative Script
    if you have a narrator in a play, do his/her lines go in italics and parentheses, or italics and brackets?
    17 September 2020
  • Shizuka
    Re: Writing Romantic Poetry
    ?? ????? ??? ???? ?? ??? ??? ??? ???? ???? ??? ?? ?? ??? ?? ????? ??? ???? ????.. ..
    20 June 2020
  • Bys23js9
    Re: Styles of Poetry
    Bruh bruh bruh tell me you hella capping broski on my mama we chillin up in this piece. Shoutout my home slice Abed.
    11 June 2020
  • 4christ
    Re: Script Writing: The Concept
    Pls I used a image for my gig on fiverr hope that did not just offend? I found the image on google images and I used it, pls pardon…
    21 May 2020
  • CunardWhiteStar
    Re: How to Write News Articles
    Hello a new ship being launched in 2030 or 2033 so The ship is called the R.M.S. Lusitania II It Has More Balance for sink It will be…
    6 August 2019
  • Cunard Line
    Re: How to Write News Articles
    RMS Lusitania II is Being Launched on 3030 With More Balance and Lifeboats This Ship can Carry over 3,000 Passengers and 6,000 Crew…
    3 August 2019
  • Yellow Star Line
    Re: How to Write News Articles
    If TITANIC III Sinks TITANIC IIII Will Be Launched on 2043 Anouncement.
    3 August 2019
  • Yellow Star Line
    Re: How to Write News Articles
    TITANIC III Will Be Launched On April 12 2030 It has Over 900 1st class cabins 1,000 Crew members 800 2nd class cabins and 700 3rd…
    3 August 2019
  • Yellow Star Line
    Re: How to Write News Articles
    TITANIC III Will Be launched On 2030 With More Lifeboats Over 101 Boats carried and 1,000 Crew Member 900, 1st class Cabins 800 2nd…
    3 August 2019
  • Kaylie
    Re: Can An Editor Rewrite My Story?
    I saw an old black n white movie that was never made into a book. If I rewrote it with different additives, could I do this…
    10 June 2019