Guest Blogging Today

P.C. Zick‘m a guest blogger today over at my friend and published author P.C. Zick‘s blog Writing Whims. Please come and check out my article entitled Editing Smackdown, where I take you through the journey that is polishing a novel. Click on the excerpt to read more.

Editing. Is it a word you dread or embrace?

I thought editing meant finding typos and grammar errors. I didn’t realize that real editing and revising was about to smack me down, and smack me hard.

And while you’re there, feel free to check out P.C.’s other many amazing posts and learn from her experience.

Anything you would add to the editing advice from your own experience? Please feel free to leave comments either here or on Writing Whims.

16 thoughts on “Guest Blogging Today

  1. You’re so right about the editing. If you just want it proofread and don’t want to hear the in-depth critiquing you’ll never get your novel to the stage where it’s truly ready to publish. A professional editor can help get you there. I’m an author and a professional copy-editor so I’ve seen it from both sides.

    • I think it’s hard because we all want to see our work published, but I think the ease of uploading to Amazon at will has made it difficult to really persevere through the growing pains of writing. I’m glad you’ve added your perspective since you’ve seen both sides of it. Always helps to hear the same advice from people who’ve been there. Thanks!

  2. That kind of drives home what I’ve been considering for a while. After I’ve finished my latest series of revisions I really do need to send my novel to a professional editor. Any advice on how to find a good editor or how much they should charge me for roughly 60,000 words?

    • My first question is have you taken it to a writer’s group or had fellow writers look over it? (I’m assuming you’ve had friends scour it for typos, grammar, and general feedback. If this isn’t the case, definitely do this step first). You want to exhaust the critique partner avenues before you send it to a professional.

      If you’ve accomplished all of that already, then I would say look to your circle of acquaintances first. If money is an issue, see if you can’t find someone who’d be willing to barter. Often kids fresh out of college will be cheaper, but less experienced.

      And now onto the pricing game. Someone I know who does a very excellent job charges $40/hr, but I’m not sure how quick that is. It probably depends on the state of the work (hence the exhausting of friends first). Some say an average is 10 pages/hour. Another friend of mine had a per/page cost, the average on that is $3-5/page. They’ll do this based on double-spaced, 12 pt font. So 60,000 words is about 250 pages, so likely in the $750+ range.

      I would research editors and see if they’ll do a sample page or two so you can get a sense of their editing style before you hire them. I would also ask them what their style of approach is. I’ve met those that just do the line editing (searching for grammar and typos) and those that focus more on plot, characters, arcs—the real guts of the story. And there are some who are a mix of both.

      So Clint Johnson is the one who charges $40/hr. He’s definitely more of a guts of the story approach. You could ask him what his average page/hr is. More details:

      This other source will do a sample edit of your first 10 pages for free. Even if you don’t decide to use them, it might be a good judge of what you can expect editing-wise with your novel. They charge $2-3/page.

      You might Google any first pages contests where people offer editing services. I’ve found it sometimes just takes someone pointing out a few mistakes helps me uncover more revisions I can take care of on my own before forking out the dough for an editor.

      Having no idea where you’re at and what you’ve already tried, hopefully this covers all the bases. Happy hunting and if you have any questions, feel free to ask. 🙂

      • Thanks for the advice. Money is an issue so it sounds like I’ll have to work over my connections a bit more. This might be a good reason to cash in some favors. 😉

  3. I’m looking forward to reading your post over at PC Zick’s blog! I’m in the middle of edits this week (I can’t remember how many rounds I’ve done), and this group of readers has encouraged me to increase my WIP by 2,500 words. It’s a painful process for me.

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