How Professional Editing Can Help Bring More Readers to Your Next Book
The goal of writing your book may be to educate, entertain, or inspire. Your heart and soul has been poured upon that pages over weeks, months and sometimes years. While a great outline and game plan will help produce a solid manuscript, another crucial step in presenting your work as an author is in copy editing. While it may be tempting to do this yourself it is well worth the investment to hire a professional. I believe it is impossible to ‘see’ your manuscript after awhile the way an impartial professional can.
“We are all apprentices in a craft where no one ever becomes a master.”
Some of the authors I work with understand this process and come to me with a fully edited book and a relationship built with an editor for future endeavors. Others, aren’t aware of the importance of having a good editor as part of your team.
Clear and concise copy has the ability to attract a reader’s attention and convey your message in a powerful way. Excellent and quality work can drive more sales than poorly executed manuscripts, of which there are many in the electronic publishing realm.
There are several factors involved in making the decision to hire a professional editor:
- Your book is self-published without the benefits of a publisher who has an in-house editor
- Polishing your work before sending it to an agent
- Discovery of weaknesses and strengths in your book
- Objective opinions and corrections
- A finished manuscript from a skilled professional
It’s important to work with someone who is not only an expert in your topic, but also knows about the writing and publishing business, and what it takes to create a book that sells. Depending on who you choose to work with plan on setting aside in your budget a minimum of $500. A top notch editor can charge up to a few thousand dollars depending on how well established they are. For a full list of freelance editors visit the EFA or Editorial Freelancers Association here.
Watch out for scams as there are are thousands of “get rich quick” schemes out there, especially with the popularity of eBooks. These people may make claims that they can guarantee your book is placed on the best-seller list or that their offer is only for a limited time. A credible editor will have a list of professional references, and does not accept kick-backs from agents.
The right editor can make the difference between getting noticed or being passed over as a novice. It is well worth the time and expense to hire the right person, especially if you would like to attract publishers and the media. The services may include an overall assessment of your manuscript, structure and style editing, rewriting text to make it more appealing to readers, basic grammar, spelling, and punctuation corrections, and other minor problems your book may have.
Working with a professional to make your book the best it can be is a team effort, and one that includes honest feedback while maintaining the vision of your topic. Don’t think of it as a change in your manuscript, but rather an improved version that will reach a larger audience. You’ve put in hours and hours of work on your idea, and the next step is to create a finished product that is both excellent and share worthy.