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Fees for Write by You Services (and Other Important Info)

Write by You Fee Schedule (PDF) - Please see my fee schedule for 2010-2011 rates. There are new options available.

I offer all of my clients a Letter of Agreement, before we begin working together. The purpose of the LOA is to guarantee that, no matter how much work I do to polish the prose, regardless of the suggestions for plots or characters, or even the wording I supply, all rights to the work will remain with you, the author. This is critical. No writer wants to deal with someone claiming that part of their book was another person’s idea. No matter whom you work with as an editor, mentor or coach, be sure to insist on a contract in writing that protects your creative rights. And, by the way, the LOA also states that the material you are submitting to me is your original work. That’s for my protection!

Who do you trust?

Why would anyone hand over their creative property to a complete stranger, to someone they’ve never worked with before? How can you know what you’ll be getting for your money?

Many editorial services are legitimate, but some do nothing more than add a few periods and paragraph breaks to the material they receive. They reformat the pages to make them look better and correct a few spelling errors but fail to address equally important issues, such as: Do the characters come alive? Is the dialogue natural? Does the plot make sense? (And these questions should be answered in more than one-word or one-sentence responses.) Some critique services never read the material they receive! It’s shocking but true. They simply return to the author a useless form letter or computer generated checklist. By then you’ve paid them hundreds, perhaps thousands of dollars…for nothing.
Be cautious. Be aware of scams. (See the Author’s Warning below.)

Before you commit, ask the individual or company to give you a price for a review of a limited number of pages so that you can see what you’ll be getting for your money. As few as 20 pages should be enough for them to demonstrate what they can do for you. (They don’t need your 500-page manuscript to offer substantial and useful feedback.) Will they go beyond editing grammar and spelling? Will they help you work on creating believable characters and building vivid action scenes to enthrall your readers? If they offer to send you samples of critiques they’ve done for other authors, it’s not a true test, but it’s better than nothing. And if the service refuses to provide samples at all, despite your willingness to pay for their time, walk away.

New clients may choose A Taste of Coaching which provides 3 hours and the first 25 pages of their work for an introductory critique. (At $75./hour, that’s only $225., for which the writer will get plenty of suggestions and a chance to decide whether or not he/she feels comfortable working with me.) If what I do fails to please, there’s no further obligation. If, on the other hand, an author wishes to continue our relationship, we make arrangements based on that individual’s needs. (See the Editing and Coaching pages for more detailed information on how I work.)

One more thought…if you can’t afford to pay for a professional like me to help you with your writing without dipping into your grocery allowance or being late on your rent, please hold onto your money. There are lots of good sites that offer information about writing for free; I’ll be featuring them in my links, writers’ tips, and newsletters. Be patient as I add more pages to my site. My clients come first, but as soon as I have the time I’ll make sure you find plenty of writing tips and tools here, and it won’t cost you a penny.  ---Best wishes, Kathryn

AUTHORS BEWARE: Please understand that publishing scams abound. Whether you choose to work with me or with any other editor, coach, mentor, or “book doctor,” take the time to protect yourself, and your craft, by reading about the dangers of the industry. The sites below educate and warn writers about unscrupulous services: