When it comes to completing a book, no writer should go it alone. A professional book editor can help you develop your ideas and polish your work. Moreover, they can help ensure your finished book is a high-quality, professional product ready for publishing. This guide will show you just how editors can help. Even better, it will help you find a book editor who is the right fit for you.
When you’re a writer, opting for professional editing services will help you make your finished book as professional as possible. Professional editors make suggestions to improve things like pacing, characters, or plot. In addition, editors improve sentences so that they flow better, fix errors, and make sure your writing is clear and effective.
The job of every editor is to improve your book and help make it a top-notch finished product. However, different types of book editors work on different aspects of books. The three main types of editors are developmental editors, copy editors, and proofreaders. We’ll describe each of the three types in greater detail below.
A developmental editor looks at the story on a large scale. They critique structure, plot, character, and global style issues. Developmental editors work on the broad aspects of the book rather than on specific details. They look at the larger issues instead of editing the language sentence by sentence.
On the other hand, copy editors edit the text on a line level, ensuring sound logic, grammatical correctness, and consistent style. They don’t generally address larger issues like plot holes or confusing character motivations. (Of course, they can point out that they exist!) By the time a copy editor is working on your book, a developmental editor should have already addressed those issues.
A good proofreader examines the text on a purely mechanical level. They make sure that words are spelled correctly, that formatting is consistent, and that punctuation is used correctly. Further, they don’t have creative input—their job is simply to correct errors.
A second pair of eyes on your manuscript can make all the difference, especially if that person is trained to recognize what works and doesn’t work for a certain type of book. However, the editor’s job isn’t to tell the author what to do. Instead, it’s to help the author bring her own vision fully to life. That’s why the best editors are patient and perceptive. They allow your vision to shine through without taking it over or pushing it in a new direction.
It’s difficult to look at your own writing objectively, especially when it’s something you’ve been working on for a long time. Thus, you need an editor to provide expert eyes on developmental, copy-related, and other issues with your manuscript. An experienced editor will catch things you never would have caught yourself—because you, the author, are too close to your project. Your editor will help you remedy overlooked issues that could weaken the experience for your readers.
Editors usually know how the publishing industry works and what acquisitions editors are looking for. Further, a good editor can help make a manuscript attractive to a traditional publisher. This gives you the key to getting your book to a place where it’s as sellable as possible.
If you are self-publishing your book, working with editors is still critical. When you work with a traditional publisher, they provide editors to work with you throughout the process. Self-publishing, however, means you’re responsible for whipping your book into shape. No writer should send his book to the printing press without a few sets of well-trained eyes to help improve it. And that’s what professional editors are for.
When you’re considering how to find a book editor, think about your manuscript, and find someone who specializes in that particular genre. In addition, think about what level of editing your manuscript needs. Do you need someone to edit every sentence? Or are you still looking for someone to help you strengthen your book’s ideas and themes? Find out which of the three types of editors you need. Then follow the tips below.
Referrals are one of the best ways to find a good book editor. If you have any trusted writer friends, ask them for a referral. The people they refer may also know other talented editors who specialize in the kind of editing you need. For example, if you are self-publishing a science fiction novel, try to find an editor who has worked on self-published science fiction books that have gone on to be successful.
You can start by googling “book editing services.” Then, narrow things down by looking for an editor with lots of experience and positive testimonials to work on your type of book.
At Elite Authors, we take the guesswork out of the process for you. We offer a full suite of book editing services, from developmental editing and line editing to copyediting and proofreading.
How much an editor charges depends on the type of editing you need. The more intensive the editing, the more time an editor spends on your book, which increases the cost. Some editors charge by the job while others charge by the hour or by the word. If you choose to work with us, you’re hiring a collaborative team who will take the guesswork out of the editing process. And we keep our prices easy and transparent so that you know up front how much a service will cost.
With a set of professional eyes helping you make your book the best that it can be, you’ll be ready to pitch your finished book to literary agents or publish it on your own. Behind every great writer is a great editor, so don’t skimp on book editing services. They can make all the difference when it comes to telling the world your story.