The NEED to Edit – Part 3/6

There are different levels of copyediting. Some work may need only a light touch while other manuscripts require heavy editing and the price is flexible. To learn more, I suggest you visit Editors

The Editors Forum says, “A freelance copyeditor corrects errors, queries the author about conflicting statements, requests advice when the means of resolving a problem is unclear, and prepares a style sheet.”

Writer’s Digest, a magazine established in 1920, says, “Smart full-time freelance writers and editors annually gross $35,000 and up—sometimes into the $150,000-200,000 range.”

For trade copy editing of books, Writer’s Digest says that the high hourly rate is $100 and the low is $16 with the average $46. If charging a page rate, the high is $20 a page and the low is $3.75 with $8 the average.

Remember—the editing rate is flexible but the final cost may be determined by the complexity of the editing.

However, if the author is a starving artist and cannot afford to pay a freelance editor, he may want to follow in Amanda Hocking’s footsteps but hear what she has to say first.

“Just the editing process alone has been a source of deep frustration, because although she has employed freelance editors and invited her readers to alert her to spelling and grammatical errors, she thinks her e-books are riddled with mistakes. ‘It drove me (Amanda Hocking) nuts, because I tried really hard to get things right and I just couldn’t. It’s exhausting, and hard to do. And it starts to wear on you emotionally. I know that sounds weird and whiny, but it’s true.'” Source: Ed Pilkington writing for The Guardian

If you are not a starving artist and have the money to pay for a freelance editor, you may want to contact Rich Adin, or check Writer’s Digest Magazine’s classified section under Editorial Services, or visit Proof Reading

Since I have not used a freelance editor yet, I cannot recommend one—caveat emptor, let the buyer beware.

The other choice is to edit your own work with some help from friends as I did. Although there are mistakes in my work, the novels are not riddled with them and the mistakes that remain do not drive me nuts as they did to Amanda Hocking.

However, I did not edit my work alone. I had some friends and tools to help.

All authors/writers come to the table with different editing skills and that includes me. There are two literacy levels: The first is comprehension to understand what one reads. The other literacy is grammar, mechanics and spelling—the editing literacy. You will understand why this makes a difference to authors later in this series of posts.

For example, although I read and comprehend at a college graduate level, my editing literacy is not as high.

Continued August 9, 2012 in The NEED to Edit – Part 4 or return to Part 2

View this Six-Part Series as a Single Page

Note: My Blog posts do not go through the exhaustive editing process my novels do.


Lloyd Lofthouse, a former U.S. Marine and Vietnam Veteran, is the award winning author of The Concubine Saga.

His latest novel is Running with the Enemy. Blamed for a crime he did not commit while serving in Vietnam, his country considers him a traitor. Ethan Card is a loyal U.S. Marine desperate to prove his innocence or he will never go home again.

And the woman he loves and wants to save was trained to hate and kill Americans.

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