A change in the text: Amend vs. emend

If only we could alter some writers’ bad habits regarding the words amend and emend!

Amend is a verb meaning to change, usually for the better or to at least set something right. For example, The Los Angeles City Council plans to amend the city charter.

Emend is a verb meaning to improve by editing and typically is limited to text. To wit, The New York City mayor’s secretary planned to emend his letter by adding a comma.

Hopefully, you now will not not need to emend your first draft when either of these words appear in your manunscripts!