My rate for a basic one-pass copy edit is five dollars ($6) per thousand words for manuscripts up to 5,000 words. Over 5,000 words, the rate is six dollars ($7-$8) per thousand depending on how much work is involved. If a piece needs significant clean-up work or major revisions), I’ll kick it back with my advice, or if you still want it edited, we can negotiate a new rate. In any case, these rates apply to the general limits of what is listed below:
- Word usage errors
- Consistency of usage
- Limited fact checking as feasible
- Basic story continuity elements
I will do my best to watch for continuity errors, consistent usage in the spelling of names and terms, and for writing anomalies. I make no promises that I’ll catch them all, but I will do my very best to catch and correct them or to add a comment for you to deal with them. I also pay very close attention to punctuation to ensure the manuscript reads as you intend with the ultimate goal of making your writing as clean as possible. I will not alter your voice or the characters’ voices
I also watch for the overuse use of certain words, expressions, and techniques that call attention to the writing and distract from it. Examples include beginning too many sentences with conjunctions, overuse of parenthetical expressions, too many overlong sentences, overuse of certain punctuation (such as dashes and ellipses).
I will not correct grammar in dialogue except for obvious spelling errors. If I am unsure of something, I will note it rather than change it.
Before I begin the actual editing, I will do some basic manuscript clean up (extra spaces, etc.). Some advice: be consistent with scene and paragraph breaks. Never use tabs or multiple spaces to indent paragraphs. Always use first-line indent instead unless you are using block formatting, but that is generally reserved for certain nonfiction books. If you plan to produce an e-book, tabs and extra spaces will often corrupt the formatting. As part of the editing, I will make these fixes. If you wish to have your manuscript formatted for publication, I will do that for a small additional fee (typically $50 or less).
If punctuation is not your strong point, I recommend Punctuation For Fiction Writers by Rick Taubold and Scott Gamboe to help improve the strength of your writing and help minimize your editing costs, especially if you use an editing service that charges by the hour (I charge by word count, not by the hour).
A free sample edit of 1-3 chapters (up to about 3000 words) is available so you can see the kind of work I do. No obligation.
Turnaround time varies depending on my current workload, but figure about 4 weeks from the time I start the project. Inquire about my current schedule regarding start time..
I will do my best to catch all errors, but no editor is perfect, and a single-pass edit won’t catch everything. If you wish a second pass through your work, I will do it at a reduced rate, and I require at least a one-month break between edits so I can view it with fresh eyes on the second pass. Therefore, the cleaner your manuscript is to begin with, the greater the chance that I’ll be able to deliver a very clean manuscript on a single pass.
No advance payment is required. Payment is accepted via PayPal or physical check once the project is done.