August 30, 2015

Editing Services


I offer a full range of editing services for all types of projects: fiction, non-fiction, academic, corporate, and more. If you’ve written it, I can provide the experience and guidance to help you unlock the best version of your work. This includes experienced indexing for academic and professional nonfiction texts.

I am a current member of the American Copy Editors Society and an Active member of SFWA (Science Fiction and Fantasy Writers of America), based on my professional fiction sales. You can view my resume, with over 20 years of experience, here.

My Rates at a Glance (See Below For Longer Explanation of Services)

Type of Work Rate Fee Per 10k Words Fee Per 50k Words
Sample edit of up to 5 double-spaced pages  Free  —  —
Manuscript evaluation: a detailed critique letter about your overall project  $30 per 10k words  —  $150
Editing, developmental: a deep edit looking at the structure, plot, characters, and more, to help guide your project forward  1 cent per word  $100  $500
Editing, heavy copyediting: corrects sentence-level errors with in-line notes and questions about overall/larger issues  0.75 cents per word  $75  $375
Editing, simple copyediting: corrects sentence-level errors only – perfect for work that’s already had development help  0.6 cents per word  $60  $300
Proofreading: final check for minor errors in a print-ready document (this is not an copyedit)  0.3 cents per word  $30  $150
Beta read, under 10,000 words: an overall evaluation + some line notes as needed, designed for short stories $25 flat fee
Indexing: creating the road map to your book, from finalized/formatted page proofs. Includes style guide creation and index review.  $2 per page    
Online chat (when not already included)  $40 per hour
Two-part developmental package: a developmental edit + heavy line edit (after you revise) 1.5 cents per word $150 $750
Two-part copyediting package: a heavy line edit + simple line edit (after you revise) 1 cents per word $100 $500
Self-publishing package: heavy line edit + proofread of print-ready document .9 cents per word $90 $450
Children’s book editing package: dev + line edit + proofread, for a children’s book/story of less than 5000 words $100 flat fee

My rates are calculated in advance so that you know up front exactly how much your project will cost, and there are no surprises.

Package Deals and Most Popular Services

Manuscript evaluations are $30 per 10,000 words. With this service, I read your manuscript at least twice, and create a detailed critique letter for you. This gives you my overall opinion on the the plot, character development, world building, voice, and writing quality of your project, as well as a chapter-by-chapter list of notes or suggestions for your next revision.

I recommend this as the first step in the editing process, especially for clients who have never worked with me before. This allows me to review your entire manuscript, confirm the level of editing required, and establish both how I work and how you will respond to notes/critiques, so that we can go forward with the rest of your edits in the way that fits you best.

Plus, the fee paid for your manuscript evaluation is deducted from your overall editing fee, so you lose nothing by taking this step.

Indexing is usually the responsibility of the author, not the publisher, but I can help you by providing an experienced and precise eye to create the road map to your book. Working from the formatted page proofs of your completed text, I will examine your text line by line, compiling a focused list of topics in the work. As an experience indexer, I bring a consistent ability to analyze your text and organize information with your needs – and your reader’s – in mind. My work conforms to industry standards, and I stay up-to-date with continuing education. In addition to indexing, this service includes ample discussion before your project begins to create a style guide specific to your work, and a round of revisions at no extra charge (if necessary) once you have reviewed the completed index. $2 per page.

Two-part developmental package: a developmental edit, after which you revise and then send it back to me for a heavy line edit, for only 1.5 cents per word. For projects over 50,000 words, this includes two hours total of online chat, scheduled as necessary, at no extra charge.

Two-part copyediting package: a heavy line edit, after which you revise, and then send it back to me for a simple copyedit of your completed manuscript, for only 1 cent per word. For projects over 50,000 words, this includes one hour of online chat, scheduled as necessary, at no extra charge. (Normally 1.35 cents per word when purchased as separate services – a huge savings!)

Self-publishing package: a heavy line edit of your manuscript, after which you revise, format, and create the print-ready document. Once that’s done, you’ll send it back to me for a proofread, ensuring your work is genuinely ready to be published. .9 cents per word. (Normally 1 cent per word total.)

$25 short story beta, for single stories under 10,000 words.

$100 Children’s book editing package: For a children’s book/story of less than 5000 words, aimed at elementary school age readers or younger. This package includes developmental consultation on your completed manuscript, followed by a line edit on your revised work, and finally, a proofread. Formatting suggestions and notes on illustrations also included if needed. Read this post for more information on how I see the children’s literature editing process.

Standard Services

Proofreading is 0.3 cents per word. Includes checking for minor problems in page makeup, layout, color separation, or type of a print-ready document. Please note that proofreading does not take the place of line editing, and unless you have already had your work edited by someone else, a proofread may not be enough. Feel free to contact me about your project; I am happy to answer questions, do a sample edit, and/or suggest a level of editing appropriate for your needs.

Copy (line) editing, light is 0.6 cents per word. Includes correcting spelling, grammar, punctuation, syntax, and word usage; checking for or imposing a consistent style and format.

Copy (line) editing, heavy is .75 cents per word. Includes correcting spelling, grammar, punctuation, syntax, and word usage; minor fact-checking; checking for or imposing a consistent style and format; suggestions about paragraph length, breaking or joining sections; preparing a style sheet if required; querying author as necessary during the process. Also includes comments and questions about any inconsistencies in plot or characterization, that can be changed without overhauling the structure of the story. (This is like a line edit plus a beta read, all in one, but doesn’t take the place of a developmental edit.)

Please note that many authors find they will need a round of simple line edits to complete their manuscript after a round of heavy line edits, even if they simply “accept all” of the suggested changes, because the “track changes” feature in word documents often causes unintentional deletions, typos, and orphans sentences. If you do revise at all – and of course you will – the simple line edits can find any new errors you may have introduced. The two-part copyediting package mentioned above offers complete coverage for only 1 cent per word.

Sample Edits: Simple Line Edits vs Heavy Line Edits 

Developmental editing is 1 cent per word. This is a deep edit which considers the project as a whole and helps you craft it into the best version of the story you’re trying to tell. A developmental edit includes making suggestions about content, organization, and presentation; recommending changes to plot, style, narrative structure, tense, and character development. We may go over the project in pieces, or work through the entire manuscript multiple times, to get the best results. For projects over 50,000 words, this includes one hour total of online chat, scheduled as necessary.

Additional online chat consultation is $40 per hour. This is booked in one hour blocks, and can be done over Gchat, Hangouts, etc (author’s preference). This is a text-chat only conversation, which allows us to copy-paste and discuss relevant pieces of the text, if need be.

Notes and Disclaimers:

All fees are listed in $US dollars. International clients must use PayPal for the transaction, which converts currency automatically.

Minimum fee charged will be $20, regardless of project length or type, including sale or discount offers, unless otherwise advertised. This does not include sample edits done for free, or services which usually cost less than $20 (such as the $15 short story beta read).

The initial payment is non-refundable. Projects under $250 are payable in advance; all others require a 50% non-refundable payment before the project begins, with the remainder due on delivery, or on a schedule agreed to by both parties. Clients with large projects who cannot make the full initial payment are requested to discuss their needs with me; when I can, I will always be flexible about the payment schedule.

Payments not made within 15 (fifteen) days will be subject to a late fee equal to 5% of the total project charge for each month that payment is not made.

All manuscripts submitted for editing must be in the standard format appropriate for the material. (Shunn’s guide for fiction writers, for example, can be found here.) Please feel free to ask if you are not sure what that means for your project; manuscripts which must be formatted by me will incur a charge of $10 per 10,000 words if the client chooses not to provide a formatted copy.

Any disputes arising out of or related to the services ordered, communication between parties, and/or use of the website shall be governed by the laws of the Ithaca, New York, USA, without regard to the conflicts of laws provisions therein. Parties agree that if necessary, any and all litigation must be filed in Tompkins County, NY.