I read your story and tell you how I feel about it as a reader. I’ll point moments that work/don’t work, look for snags in the plot, and let you know which characters were easy to connect with. I won’t line edit, but I will point out consistent grammatical errors. There will be a few in-line comments to highlight great lines, and a few pages of feedback at the end.
The important thing about beta reading is that the focus is on the reader’s response as a reader. Betas are here to test drive your novel and make a couple of suggestions to let you know how you’re doing.
I do not charge for beta reading.
Developmental editing means that I will open up your story and look closely at how everything works. I will read your book as an editor and provide analytical feedback on story structure, plot, pacing, characters, and world-building. Not only will I identify things that do and do not work, I will look at why they aren’t working and what their impact is on the story as a whole. I will also point out consistent grammatical errors. The goal is to call attention to weaknesses in the story and to point out possible solutions. There will be in-line comments to discuss specific moments in your story, as well as detailed feedback at the end of your MS.
Heavy Developmental Editing
If your story has major known issues—gaping plot holes, point-of-view trouble, underdeveloped characters—I will go through your manuscript finding individual instances of this issue, tracing out its consequences, and identifying critical moments in the text where you can strengthen your story and start to address the issue. Essentially, I will work to help you explore your options for solving this problem, and to bring your manuscript in-line with the story that you want to tell.
This is where I comb through your story and focus on the finer points of writing. I’ll look at sentence structure, word choice, grammar, dialog tags, and general language use to suggest ways that you can sharpen your writing. Most comments will be in-line, with a small amount of summary feedback at the end of the MS to discuss recurring issues. Line editing does not address story structure and focuses solely on writing mechanics.
Not sure if this service is what you need? Send your first three chapters and I’ll edit and critique them. Not only does this provide feedback on the beginning of your novel, but it’s also a great way to get a sense of what these services entail and whether or not they’re right for your novel.
If you decide to purchase full editing services, the cost of the sample critique will be counted towards that.
How to Request Services
Send the first ten pages of your MS to firstname.lastname@example.org, along with the word-count and what kind of service you would like to request. Also let me know if you have any time constraints. I will read through your pages, let you know if I’m available to take the job, and provide you with a price quote. All prices are negotiable.
How Long It Takes
Once I have received the full manuscript, it generally take me a 3-4 weeks to complete the request. If you have a deadline, please let me know so that I can work to accommodate your time frame.
What I read
I am open to all genre fiction, with an emphasis on fantasy, sci-fi, horror, romance, YA, and MG. Genre-bending works and experimental fiction are also welcome.
I do not read non-narrative works (poetry, informative non-fiction, essays, math proofs, etc.)
How to Get the Most out of Editing Services
Ideally, you want to send the most polished version of your manuscript. This enables me to pay attention to the specifics of your story and allows me to give useful, constructive feedback rather than pointing out issues that you already know how to fix. Likewise, spellchecking your work and resolving mechanical issues means that I can focus my attention on your word choice and sentence structure, rather than untangling grammatical snags that you could have taken care of on your own. The more known issues you take care of before you send your work, the more useful the feedback will be.
For this reason, I’ve put together a beta-reading checklist. I highly recommend that you go over it and make sure that you’ve addressed these points before you send your work. Skimming through the rest of the blog might also help you get a sense of what I pay attention to, how I edit, and whether my services would be a good match for your book.
Another thing that you can do to optimize your editing is send a few questions to direct my reading. Let me know what aspects of the story you would like me to focus on so that I can construct targeted feedback.