Editing

I offer editing services on most genres of fiction. I specialise in commercial women’s fiction, romance, chick-lit, ‘book group’ fiction and crime, but will consider manuscripts in most other genres. I don’t normally work on non-fiction projects, childrens’ fiction or horror.

My normal editing process includes up to three read-throughs on a manuscript.

The first pass is to look at structural issues with the manuscript eg. significant inconsistencies in characterisation; sections where the narrative slows; or continuity errors in the timeline or plotting.

The second pass looks at changes made after the first pass, and checks for consistency with the existing narrative.

The third pass (if needed) would look at any further changes made in round 2 and start to look at a more specific line by line polishing of the text.

What I don’t offer is a detailed copy-editing or proof-reading service. These are specialist skills, and are best done by someone other than your initial structural editor. These services are provided to a high standard by Imogen Howson and Catherine Fitzsimons, or, alternatively, there is a directory of proof-readers and copyeditors here.

Prices for editing services vary depending on the length of the manuscript, but as a guideline, I would normally charge between £500 and £600 for structural and some initial line editing on a 80-100,000 word manuscript. Please contact me if you would like more information about editing services.

What’s the difference between an edit and a manuscript appraisal?

There are obviously similarities, but there are key differences. A manuscript appraisal is a developmental document, intended to help you develop your novel further and also to help you develop as a writer. An edit is focused on one single issue – getting a manuscript publication-ready.

Which do you need?

I would suggest that if this is your first novel and you’ve not had any professional input so far, then a manuscript appraisal would be more appropriate.

Beyond that, think about what sort of publication you are aiming for. If you are intending to self-publish your novel then I would advise you consider paying for professional editing services. The editing process is the last step in getting your manuscript ready for publication, so think about whether you would like to share it with beta readers or revise it yourself before you pay for editorial input.

If you are intending to submit your novel to agents or traditional publishers then your agent and editor are both likely to offer editorial advice, and the cost of editing your novel should fall to your publisher. If you feel you need an outside pair of eyes on your novel, and advice on how you could develop it further, before submitting to agents or publishers, then a manuscript appraisal would be more appropriate for you.

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