Book Editing (Proof Reader, Copy Editor, Literary Editor)
Editing is absolutely a crucial step in the publishing process. You must have someone else edit your book. It’s nearly impossible to edit your own book, (simply because you see what you want to see, when reading your own work.) Another eye is needed to catch the most obvious of errors. Another mind is needed to point out prose and sentences that just don’t work. Good writing is tight, concise writing. (Most new writers don’t quite get that.)Never say in ten words, what you can say in two. This is an excellent writing rule to follow.
There are several different levels of editing, based on the quality of a manuscript. A very tightly written manuscript with a very sound conflict arc (for fiction) or a very well developed-theme, (for creative nonfiction) or a very informative, clear purpose (for business nonfiction), will only need minor editing. Proofreading, for example, is a type of editing that might be necessary for that manuscript, to make sure that every period and comma is in place; and every proper noun is capitalized. The devil truly is in these details, when it comes to manuscripts.
Most manuscripts, however, require more editing than that. A copy editor will look at just more than basic mechanics. With a copy edit, a manuscript will need to be reviewed two or three times. Issues such a sentence structure and word choice will be addressed. A very in-depth analysis of the story line, theme, or book’s purpose will be addressed. There maybe recommendations for rewriting in some areas of the manuscript.
The last, most extensive type of editing, is the literary edit. With a literary edit, not only will sentence structure and word choice be addressed, not only will a very in-depth analysis of the story line, theme or purpose be provided, but in addition, where rewriting is necessary to improve the structure of the manuscript, that will also be provided.
Cost of Editing Services
According to my research, fair editing prices range .010 to .025 cents a word. (So that’s my pricing structure!) For the typical 80,000-word manuscript, those fees range from $800 to $2000. Keep in mind that many manuscripts are more or less than 80,000 words and thus, cost is affected in direct relation to word count. (Please not that many editors, and some vanity press literary scam artists will charge a lot more. Buyer beware! Do your homework to ensure you get a good deal when you hire an editor. )