Rick Taubold Editing Services

(plus formatting for publication and book cover design)

(rates as of 9/22/2019)

The various types of editing and what they cover:

Not everyone agrees on the various terms and their definitions, but I use the following:

PROOFREADING: Final editing before publication. Looks for typographical and spelling errors, missing and repeated words, basic grammar errors, missing punctuation, consistent formatting.

COPYEDITING: Covers spelling, punctuation, grammar, word usage errors (including words commonly confused (past/passed), incorrectly used words, wrong word choices), consistency of usage and spelling (capitalization, numerals, punctuation styles, OK/okay, shh/shhh, character names, made-up words and names).

LINE EDITING: (also called SUBSTANTIVE EDITING.) This is a cleaning and polishing of the manuscript line by line to ensure consistency of writing style, fix sentence structure, clean up awkward sentences. Some editors lump this in with COPYEDITING.

DEVELOPMENTAL EDITING: (also called STRUCTURAL EDITING or CONTENT EDITING) This looks at the manuscript as a whole and assesses plot flow, structure, and the overall writing—what works and what needs work.

I normally do a combination of COPYEDITING and LIMITED LINE EDITING and rarely do full line editing and developmental editing because I don’t have the time and don’t’ believe in forcing a writing style on the author. However, if do you want more than copyediting, I will try to accommodate your needs within your budget.

EDITING RATES (per 1000 words):

(1) Copyediting (includes basic cleanup)

Up to 5000 words: $7 (minimum charge $10, calculated at fractions of 1K)

Over 5000 words: $8 for nominal editing, $9 if extra work is required

I will advise prior to editing which rates apply after reviewing the manuscript.

(2) Proofreading, check only spelling and grammar:

$6 per 1000 words

(3) Evaluate and comment for writing quality, story flow, readability:

$3 per 1000 words.

These rates assume a basic clean-up has been done by the author of the manuscript beforehand, meaning you’ve looked it over several times and done what you can rather than delivering a messy first draft If a piece needs major clean-up work or I feel it’s not ready for my editing services (needs major revisions), I’ll kick it back to you with my advice for revisions or offer a customized rate.

I check facts and verify those things that don’t look right or that I’m not sure of. I will watch for basic story continuity elements, comment if I believe you need to make changes, and clean up messy sentences. If I find myself correcting the same sentence issues too often, I may send it back to you to fix before I continue.

I will not rewrite the book for you, only clean up what’s there and fix occasional awkward sentences. However, if you want me to go deeper (clean up awkward writing in general and fox POV issues), I will do that at the higher editing rate.

Before I begin the actual editing, I do basic manuscript clean-up to remove extra spaces, tabs, and general garbage. This is included in my basic editing cost.

However, if you deliver a messy manuscript that requires significant extra cleanup, this will add $25 to the editing charge. I will let you know if this is the case.

Some advice: be consistent with scene and paragraph breaks. Never use tabs in the manuscript. Always use first-line indent only to indent paragraphs. If you plan to produce an e-book, tabs will corrupt the formatting, as will extra spaces. If you elect to have me format the manuscript as well, I can do that for a nominal charge (see rates below)

My copyediting includes the following:

—Look for and fix continuity errors and anomalies to the best of my ability with no promises that I’ll catch them all. These are the author’s responsibility, but I will try and either correct them or contact you if I have questions on how to resolve the problem. Typical problems include inconsistent spellings of character names or made-up places.

—Fix punctuation to ensure the manuscript reads as you intend and that the punctuation style is consistent. Note that there are different punctuation styles. I will try to respect yours as long as it’s a clear and consistent one.

—Limited fact checking. I possess a broad knowledge of many subjects and several foreign languages. I will try to catch errors on those subjects within my expertise or things that strike me as possibly incorrect. However, getting the facts right are the author’s responsibility, and unless something raises a flag for me, I will likely miss it.

—I won’t change dialogue except for obvious spelling errors. I won’t alter your voice or the characters’ voices. I will consult you before changing anything I’m unsure of.

A free sample edit of 5-10 pages (max. about 2500 words) is available so you can see the kind of work I do.

Editing turnaround time depends on my current workload. Inquire about my current schedule. For book-length manuscripts (50K-150K), expect 3-6 weeks.

No editor is perfect, and a single-pass edit may not catch everything. My basic process for novels is to do a chapter at a time, then go back over that edited chapter to look for things I might have missed before moving on. After I’m done, I run the manuscript through a grammar checker that sometimes picks up different things always do a second quick pass with another grammar checker that flags possible issues and also checked for mismatched quote marks (easy to miss otherwise). If you wish a full second pass through your work, I will do it at $3 per 1000 words, 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.



E-book and print book (either or both combined). This includes setting margins, page, and scene breaks, making the word spacing on a line look decent, and making the manuscript look nice.

without editing job: $50 up to 50k + $10/25k over that

with editing job: $35 up to 50k + $5/25k over that

For more extensive or special formatting (such as textbooks), inquire about rates and whether I’m willing to undertake the work.



Cover cost includes up ONE purchased stock image from Shutterstock. Additional purchased stock images are $15 each. However, I try to find and use license-free images where possible. I will under no circumstances violate owner copyrights and use permissions. If the required image is not available from Shutterstock or a free source, I will inform you in advance of the cost if more than $15.

Front cover only: $80
Full cover: $100

If I also edit the book, these prices are halved ($40/$50) plus the cost of any additional stock images.

I prefer to do covers only for those books that I have read or edited because that way I can get a better feel for what would be a suitable cover. If I have not edited or read your book, you need to provide me enough information about the story to give me a good feel for it. If you have a particular concept in mind, I’ll do my best to give it to you.

However, if after several trials and failures, I will recommend that I abandon the cover attempt and that you go elsewhere, or that I will need to charge for the extra time, and we can negotiate that. While I’ve some many excellent covers, cover design is not my primary business. I include it because I can do it inexpensively for you compared to what those who design covers for a living.

Payment is accepted via PayPal or physical check once the project is done.