What is your typical process for working with a new customer?
After a writer fills out the editing form on my website, including the ten-page attachment requested on the form, I provide a proposal listing every service I offer with respective prices customized to their manuscript. I send this with the edited sample and remain available to answer any questions the writer may have.
If the writer accepts the proposal and the provided start date, I require fifty percent of the total amount due prior to starting. I don't require the remaining amount until I complete my editing, but I will not return the manuscript until the entire bill is paid.
What education and/or training do you have that relates to your work?
I have a bachelor's in creative writing and English from Southern New Hampshire University, as well as an associate in journalism from Del Mar College.
I was a copyeditor for the Del Mar College Foghorn and for Journal Media Group (Gannett) prior to a merging of companies.
I earned a certificate as a copywriter from AWAI, and I've been a freelance editor since 2014.
Do you have a standard pricing system for your service? If so, please share the details here.
Copyediting — .008 per word
Content (Line) Editing — .01 per word
Developmental Editing — $25 per hour (approx. 1-4 pages per hour)
Red Pen Consultation — $200 (less if it's added on to the copyediting or content editing services. This is included automatically in the developmental service, and it is not included in the price. It's complementary.)
How did you get started doing this type of work?
While pursuing journalism and getting my feet wet as a writer, I wanted to work with the newspaper more, so I was asked to proofread pages. After the first night, I realized I enjoyed it, and the editing staff was impressed with my work. It became a regular job for me, and since my original motivation for pursuing journalism was because I wanted to become a better writer, I merged the two and started editing books. I changed out AP style for Chicago Manual of Style, and while I still use both (still do both), my love for editing books will always be greater.
What types of customers have you worked with?
I've worked with customers who have experienced things they struggle to share in their work, and I've taken extra time to walk them through it.
I've worked with writers who don't yet know their writing style, and I've spent extra time helping them develop it, usually through the consultation.
I've worked with authors who have had previously published books, and I've become partners with them, as well as an eager listener and teacher when necessary.
I've worked with people who need working with; in other words, I've been in long-term contact with people who need help creating their story from the raw idea in their head, and I've helped them turn it into what they want it to be without me writing a single word.
I've worked with people who know nothing about the publishing industry, and I've helped point them in the direction of cover designers and formatters as needed to aid them in their journey.
Describe a recent project you are fond of. How long did it take?
One of my recent projects was also one of my longest. I'm most fond of it because the genre wasn't traditionally what I would go for, but the plot was intriguing, and I wasn't disappointed. As long as the project took me, it was a learning experience both for me and for the writer. We worked together on it for a couple months, and we went through the developmental process and consultation. Now, I'm eager for him to finish so I can dig into the copyediting side, because I want to see the finished product. Seriously, I'm excited.
I'm also fond of a biker romance I edited because it came to me as a shining gem. I became obsessed with the story itself, and I'm waiting on the sequel to be written, because I'm desperate to know what happens next. I consider myself blessed to have her as a forever client. I'd hate to have to wait even longer to find out what happens. And, from our partnership, I made a friend.
What advice would you give a customer looking to hire a provider in your area of work?
If they don't offer a sample, be skeptical. An editor's credibility is based purely on the quality of their work, so if they aren't willing to showcase it, there might be something wrong.
Look for reviews, and look for links to books they've edited.
Avoid quick turnaround times unless the quality of their sample suggests otherwise. If I could get out a 70k-word novel edit in three days, I would. But, that would require a lot of speeding, and I'm not willing to sacrifice quality to do so.
What questions should customers think through before talking to professionals about their project?
What is my budget for editing?
How confident am I in my characters' development? Plot's development?
Is my manuscript the best it can be before sending to an editor, or am I trying to dump all my simple mistakes on an editor because "it's their job"?
Is the editor I want based in the country I live in? (for style purposes)
Am I willing to accept what my editor tells me and consider all feedback accordingly?