EDITOR WITH THIRTY YEARS’ EXPERIENCE
Will work with you
By phone or Skype
By email using Track Changes
- I will review your manuscript, give you an initial evaluation, and help you decide how much and what kind of editing is best for you.
- I will not only edit and suggest ideas for rewriting, but I will identify repeated problem areas and work with you so that you can spot and correct them yourself.
- In the process of editing your manuscript, I will introduce you to some techniques I have developed that will allow you to work with your own writing more effectively.
I charge by the hour for editing of any kind.
I will invoice monthly.
There is no more valuable asset for your book or your business than a first-rate writer and editor.
An editorial review is a careful and thorough reading and evaluation of your manuscript, designed to provide an honest appraisal of just where I think it stands. Is it ready to move forward, with basic editing along the way, or does it need substantial reconsideration and revision? It is at this point that I will make recommendations about what kind and amount of editing is needed, what is involved, and the cost of undertaking it.
Sample Review (of my own manuscript after an editorial review):
I came away from a close reading of Looking for Lydia; Looking for God wanting to know more about the lives of these women in the Bible Study at the Lydia Roper Home, and I was delighted to discover the block of short chapters that your introductions of the women made so fulfilling. The presentation of their characters, through detail of everything from Kate’s bracelet to the gradual emergence of Inez’s voice, is a great strength of your manuscript. The growth of your obsession with finding stories about Lydia Roper is compelling, but you need markers to keep the reader grounded: when did you find the information about her marriage in Philadelphia? About her charitable work in Norfolk? It’s too easy to get lost.
I applaud your attempt to weave the stories of these women with those of the women in the Bible, the women in the Roper family, and your own story into a book that is, at least in part, about stories. That attempt is not always successful, however, due to very weak, if nonexistent, transitions. And to repeat: one of the book’s problems is the failure to tell the reader where he is in time and place. The book can be confusing and all but the staunchest reader might just give up. I suggest you consider visual separations—small designs of some kind—to signify major shifts in the narrative and to provide the sense of sections of the story.
Part of the book’s appeal, however, is this movement back and forth between centuries and cities, so you want to preserve your own voice and tone as you make those shifts a little more manageable for someone coming to the people and the history for the first time.
I suggest some reorganization at the beginning, possibly a division of that long first chapter into a Prologue and a much shorter Chapter One. If you intend to submit the manuscript for publication, I recommend a line edit for style and a copy edit for inconsistencies in capitalization and italics and to work with you on punctuation, especially the excessive use of semi-colons.
Line editing provides the next level of specificity in the reading of your manuscript. I will mark and comment on your work in Microsoft Word using Track Changes. If you haven’t used this editing program, our first job will be to teach you how to do that. It is a clean, easy way for us to have a conversation on the page about your text, my suggestions, your responses, and—finally—the compromises we can reach. I find this process exciting and always productive. It never fails to result in a better piece of writing, and it builds a strong relationship between writer and editor.
I will provide:
- A line-by-line editing of your manuscript using Track Changes to include:
- proofreading for errors in grammar, spelling, punctuation
- editing for style: sentence structure, word choice, voice
- re-ordering and further development of ideas
- A final consultation to review all decisions on the manuscript
The copy editor corrects faulty spelling, grammar, punctuation, and usage and corrects inconsistencies in spelling, capitalization, numerals, and fonts. Copyediting may also include reworking text to achieve parallel structure, correct use of idiom, or changing passive to active voice. On rare occasions, the copy editor may rewrite to eliminate wordiness, replace weak vocabulary, and smooth or provide necessary transitions. The copy edit is the final read-through your manuscript will get after the more substantive line editing.
I will provide:
- A close reading to correct errors in basic grammar, punctuation, and usage
- Correction of sentences for wordiness, awkward phrasing or word choice, errors in parallel structure
- Reworking of paragraphs to provide logical development of ideas within and workable transitions between
- A conference—in person or by phone or Skype—to discuss my changes
If you choose a full review, line edit, and copy edit of your manuscript, I will provide all editing services listed for those options and an in person or telephone/Skype consultation in which we have a conversation that includes a final evaluation of your work, my ideas about where you might go at that point, and the resolution of any questions you still have.
I will provide:
- Editorial review
- Comprehensive line editing
- Copy editing
- Final consultation in which we discuss where you go from here and review the techniques with which you can work with this and future manuscripts most effectively.