Most edits are armor. They keep you from losing to an unprofessional typo or a jumbled sentence. A substantive edit is a weapon that actively helps you win. My substantive edit includes:
A fiction substantive edit evaluates plot, characters, dialogue, pacing, setting, tone, writing style, fit for audience, and more. There may also be genre-specific considerations. For instance, if you’re a spec-fic writer, worldbuilding and magic systems will also be examined in depth.
I enjoy editing a wide range of fiction genres: mystery, historical fiction, suspense, romance, science fiction, dystopian, fantasy, and pretty much anything else you can imagine. The exceptions are erotica and heavy horror. If detailed sex scenes are integral to your book, I’m not the editor for you. And while I enjoy elements of horror mixed into my spec-fic reads, full-on horror isn’t my cup of tea.
A nonfiction substantive edit evaluates organization, clarity, writing style, logic, consistency, credibility, relatability, tone, fit for audience, and more. If you want to make sure your message is clear, concise, and persuasive, this is the edit for you.
Christian living is my specialty in nonfiction. I’ve written for Tyndale’s Tecarta Bible App, Crosswalk.com, and national and international devotional publications, so I’m very familiar with the Christian audience. I can help you craft your content so it’s consistent with the Bible and Christian orthodoxy and avoids offending Christians from differing denominational stances. Please note that for more academic works, I reserve the right to charge a higher rate, as additional time is needed for research and fact-checking.
If you have follow-up questions about my substantive edits, I’m happy to consult by phone or over email. Again, the first half hour is completely free! After that, I offer further consultation for $35/hr.
Maybe your book needs some big-picture edits but you’re working on a tight deadline or a tight budget. Maybe you’re confident in your book but not so confident in your pitch to agents and editors. Critiques offer you professional advice where you need it most at a fraction of a full edit’s cost.
A manuscript critique is a lighter, leaner cousin of the substantive edit—no in-text comments, just a 5+ page summary of the big picture and thirty minutes of post-edit consultation.
You’ll lose specific comments and advice at the paragraph level. However, you’ll still get a professional analysis of your manuscript as a whole. Are you overusing adverbs? Is your POV usage consistent? Do complicated backstories hurt your pacing? Is there a hole in your big argument from chapters four and five? Does your tone fit your audience? All these questions and more can be tackled in a manuscript critique.
Too often, rejection letters are vague and unhelpful: “It’s not the right fit for us” or “We’re not interested at this time.” A proposal typically includes your query letter, your pitch, your synopsis, your first three chapters, your author platform, and your marketing plan. How do you know which part(s) of the proposal missed their mark?
A proposal is meant to be a condensed package of information. Thus, a proposal critique includes in-text comments at the sentence level.
As someone with experience in editing, marketing, and proposal review for a traditional publisher, I can give you a snapshot of how you come across to agents and editors—and help you take your proposal to the next level.
Just as with a substantive edit, both critiques come with a free half-hour follow-up consultation by phone or email. After that, I offer further consultation for $35/hr.
A professional copyedit is the armor for your book. It not only helps your writing look sharp—it protects you from unclear sentences and embarrassing errors. It checks grammar, catches typos, polishes punctuation, untangles jumbled sentences, corrects capitalization, and gets you geared up with The Chicago Manual of Style (CMOS).
CMOS weighs in on many of the subjective rules within writing: How many dots are in an ellipsis? Where do the spaces go? Is the Oxford comma right or wrong? Should you capitalize pronouns that refer to God?
In book publishing, CMOS is the gold standard for answering these questions. A manuscript that follows those standards is one step closer to being professionally published.
Long live the Oxford comma!
*Please note that my rate may be increased for manuscripts with a high error count, manuscripts that require heavy source citations, etc. Modifications to this rate will be discussed before the signing of the contract, and I will never change this rate without your knowledge or agreement.
A proofread is the final line of defense against typos and grammar errors. It only corrects what is objectively incorrect.
A manuscript that hasn’t been copyedited isn’t ready for a proofread, since a proofread is meant to be a final check-through rather than a significant revision. If you’ve already hired another editor to copyedit your manuscript, I would be happy to provide the proofread. However, if your initial editor left too many errors (e.g., not following The Chicago Manual of Style, misusing punctuation, etc.), I reserve the right to charge you my copyediting rate rather than my proofreading rate.