Is my service right for you?

So you’ve finished your book.  You’ve combed through it so many times you could probably recite it from memory.  The general consensus is that you should get it copy-edited first BUT consider the following scenario:

 

You hand over your manuscript and your money to a copy editor.  When you get it back, you give your story to somebody to read and they come back and say:

 

“The grammar and spelling is flawless but your characters are bland.  I didn’t understand what was happening in this scene and there’s a big plot hole in chapter twenty.”

 

Now you need to re-write parts of your story.  You may even need to give it a serious overhaul and write lots of new scenes.  Once you've done that, you have to give it back to the copy-editor, effectively paying double.

 

The problem is a copy editor won’t tell you if your story is any good.  That's not their job.  All they are concerned with is 'the technical stuff' - grammar, spelling consistency, correct punctuation etc.  Furthermore, a publisher or agent is more likely to overlook a grammatical error than a bland set of characters or lacklustre plot.

 

Don’t get me wrong – copy editors and proofreaders provide an invaluable service and I would ALWAYS recommend hiring one to take a look at your work, but it is really a finishing touch.  Think of it like creating furniture from a solid block of wood; the author carves out the story, the critique sands down the rough edges and the copyeditors and proofreaders add a shine of varnish.  You wouldn’t varnish it before it was sanded down.  The same is true for your story.

 

In order to make sure we’re a good fit, I am more than happy to provide samples of my work.  If you’re still not sure, I can critique the first 5000 words for £10.  If you like what you see, you can send me the rest of the manuscript.  The £10 you have already paid will be put towards the cost of editing the rest of the manuscript.*

 

*Must be the same manuscript the first 5000 words were taken from.  £10 must be paid in full upfront.

  

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