I do, on occasion, edit for Indie authors that need someone who can work with them. I don’t have issues with genres and have experience in most (writing, editing, and reading). I have the least amount of experience in Christian-based fiction and nonfiction, Westerns, and technical nonfiction. Sometimes it is hard finding affordable resources when you are just starting out and I try to help my fellow writers as much as I can.
How I Edit:
-The first chapter is always free. This gives me a chance to see what I am working with and the writer a chance to see how I work.
-After the agreements are made and contract signed (to protect the writer’s works and guarantee my pay), I get the manuscript and 50% of the agreed fee so I can begin my process.
1st read-through (copy edit phase): I go through and look for obvious grammatical, spelling, punctuation, wording, and other issues and make in-text changes with track changes on in red.
2nd read-through (developmental editing phase): Word by word, I check the manuscript for errors (spelling, punctuation, grammar, usage, etc.), flow, plot movement and holes, continuity, dialogue, readability, character and story development, and any other aspect of the book. I make in-text changes with track changes on in red for corrections and use the comment bubbles to the side for any issues, critiques, and suggestions. I send the manuscript back with an analysis written up with areas that need checked; the good parts, the bad parts, and the ugly parts.
At this point, I send the invoice for the remaining amount due (and showing what was paid), as the proofreading is optional (although highly suggested so that I can check for issues that track changes obscured or any overlooked issues missed amongst the tracked changes) . There is a maximum of ten days to pay the invoice from the time it is sent.
The writer then makes the changes and sends the manuscript to me for a final run through (proofread). I am not responsible for any changes the author does not accept and/or refuses to make.
3rd read-through (proofreading phase) : I read as a reader would. Any hiccups, stops, issues, anything that stands out is notated, corrected, or pointed out for the author to fix.
I send the final copy back for the author to make the extra changes on. Any changes after I have edited is not my responsibility. Any changes refused is not my responsibility.
- I have OCD and am a perfectionist but, unfortunately, I am not perfect. I can’t guarantee perfection. I can do my best and the best I am capable of, though it hasn’t led me wrong thus far, but that is all.
- I can’t guarantee a book will do good or bad. I am not the writer, marketer, seller, etc. Sales are not my responsibility. I do not grade the work of the story. I edit a lot of stories that aren’t my cup of tea, but that doesn’t mean I am going to tell the writer to change it.
- I am blunt and honest. I don’t do sugar coating or softening of blows. I say what works and what doesn’t and make suggestions on how to fix it. I will point out the good stuff as well as the bad. I’m not a mean person (a little, but not really), just honest.
- I have reviewed books in a professional capacity before. It was an unforgiving job. I am well aware of what reviewers and the average reader likes, doesn’t like, what stands out, and so on and I do use this in my analysis of books I am editing.
- My suggestions, comments, and tips are to be used how the writer sees fit. A book is the baby of the writer. I am not looking to change the story, voice, telling, or any of that. I am a translator and negotiator to make sure a story comes from the writer and is received and read by the reader to the best of its ability. Nothing I say is a mandatory move the writer has to make (although I must reiterate that I can’t be held accountable for changes I suggest that aren’t made).
- Although the book should be in the best shape after the third and final read-through, it is still up to the author to make sure everything is ready for publishing. Typographical errors, accidental changes, formatting, etc. that occurs after editing is completed is not the responsibility of the editor after they are finished editing.
My starting rate is $.005 per word. I do have a contract that is sent in PDF to lay out all agreed terms, protect the writer’s works, promise me pay, and make sure everything is clear before work begins. I accept pay through Paypal and conversion rates are adjustable from the invoice. Pay can be negotiated based on the author’s situation. On average, a 50k manuscript takes around 1.5-2 weeks, give or take depending on the state of the manuscript, the work needed done, and any other situations. Often the edits are done ahead of time but extra time is planned for in case issues arise.
This is the basic layout of my editing work process. Any questions or inquiries are welcome!