Let me explain my editing method. It’s a relaxed but highly effective system that I’ve perfected over time, and it seems to work well for my clients, no matter where they live or where they are in their writing careers.
I usually begin a new relationship with a writer by reviewing the first 25-30 pages of their work-in-progress (assuming this is a book-length project). Completing the critique takes me about 3 hours of intense work on their material alone. I do not ship out manuscripts to outside readers or freelance editors. If I can’t personally handle a new client’s submission because of content (I don’t do pornography, graphically violent stories involving children, or slanderous works), or if my time is full, I let the author know before any money changes hands. In addition, I will review, at your option, a 1-2 page plot synopsis (or nonfiction overview) of the book. This enables us to catch major problems that might affect the chances of sale of the work, should you wish to someday see it published.
Clients submit their material electronically in Microsoft Word, as an e-mail attachment. I download their file then create margin notes as I read. I add, cut, or change wording where necessary; point out what is working well and where problems arise—all in “Track Changes”. When the file is returned to the author everything needed to continue working on revisions is right there. You can accept or reject any of my suggestions. In addition, I include a 2- to 4-page letter that details additional information the writer may need to make the manuscript as strong as possible. I always offer options for solving problems.
In short, this is a teaching edit, not a final line edit prior to going into production. And I don’t write your book for you. Hire a ghostwriter if you hate writing; I’m here for people who want to improve their writing skills. I will also show you how to fine tune your concept and material so that it will have the best chance for serious consideration by a publisher. I specialize in novels, but enjoy working on some types of nonfiction as well. I do not work with poetry because I’m not a poet; therefore, I’m not qualified as a mentor for that art form. Finally, I work with writers of all experience levels, from the novice to the multi-published author. I’m gentle but always thorough and professional in my approach.