editorial alchemy

You’ve done it.

You’ve finally finished drafting your book.

This is a huge accomplishment.

No one knows better than you how great it feels to have typed that last word. The book that has been swimming in your head for months–maybe years–finally exists.

You deserve to take a deep breath and congratulate yourself. Not everyone who wants to write a book reaches this point. You have.

And yet, you know that there’s still work to be done.

Now that the book is completed, it can’t be more clear that drafting the book is only part of the process. Your book is finished–but it’s not the book that you’d dreamed it could be. And it’s hard to feel that way.

But this isn’t your fault. It’s an inherent part of the creative process.

One of the hidden truths of the book-writing process is that drafting and planning is–at most–twenty-five percent of the project. The majority of the work (and the magic!) happens after that first draft is complete.

Revision isn’t very glamorous, and it doesn’t get a lot of air time. Everyone knows that books need a proofread before they’re published. But a developmental edit? It’s hard to get a clear idea of what it is, let alone why you might need it.

But developmental editing is a crucial step in the revision process. It’s during this stage that we work together to make your book the most effective it can be. It’s essentially a focus on content–what’s working, what isn’t, and how we can make it better.

And, for most books, a thorough line edit is essential. A good editor will insert herself into your voice, nudging your words until they sound like you wanted them to when you were drafting. You’ll learn how to maximize efficiency, increase clarity, and address any patterns you lean on while you write.

And this is where I come in.

What your book needs now is collaboration.

I’ve supported hundreds of authors through the revision process, and I can provide the expertise and perspective that you need to move forward.

The creative process flourishes when two (or more) deeply invested parties come together to give their best to a project–no successful book is created in a vacuum.

And this doesn’t mean that we need to remold your book to fit an industry standard–this is your book, and you’re the captain of this ship.

It’s not my job to tell you what will sell. It’s not my intention to force my artistic preferences on you, and I’m certainly not  going to take my marbles and go home if you don’t follow every last suggestion that I make.

I promise you this: all of my feedback will be delivered with kindness.

I know how scary it can be to share something that matters this much with a stranger. I know how intimidating it can be to open your creative work to criticism, and I know how much it can hurt when that feedback is delivered callously.

Writing and revising a book is a lot of hard work, and I know that you know this. But there’s no sense in making that process harder than it needs to be. There’s no sense in being mean.

I will bring my experience, expertise, and perspective to the table to help you create a book you can be proud of.

I will help you see where your intentions have been realized in the text, and where you’ve fallen short. I will give you actionable advice to help you shore up any weak points. I will help you understand the patterns you lean on in your language, and I will help you identify your book’s strengths–and weaknesses.

And I will be here to help you continue moving when things get hard. When the project becomes overwhelming or the way forward isn’t immediately clear. I’ll be a partner and a companion through this first stage of the revision process, and you won’t have to do this work alone.

You’ll get the guidance and support you need to effectively revise your book. Your book will flourish, your message will crystallize, and you will grow as a writer.

So if you’re ready to get started–let’s talk.

We can transform the book that you have into the book you want it to be. Together.

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How we’re going to make your book glow:

We are going to work together to customise an editorial approach that will be just perfect for your book.

Each writer has different strengths and weaknesses. There’s no sense spending time on something that’s not going to benefit you or your project–and once in a while, something needs just a little extra TLC.

But, just so you know what to expect, the approach for most books will include some combination of the following:

An initial conversation.  We’ll kick off this adventure with a free, fifteen-minute chat over phone or Skype.  This allows us to get a feel for each other and allows me to understand your project and your ideal outcome for our time together–and customize a plan for you.

A five-page critique. This document will include my overall thoughts about the book’s strengths and weaknesses and my advice about how to begin addressing some of the concerns. There’s a sample critique here.

A developmental edit. I’ll make in-text comments to help guide your revisions and draw your attention to mid-level concerns. This is where we will get into the work of pacing, consistency, and development.  You can see a sample of this here.

A line edit. I’ll take a look at your language and make sure it’s as efficient as possible. This is all about making your voice shine–not about what I think is best. You can see a sample of this here.

Face-to-face support over Skype. It’s in your book’s best interest for us to talk about your project. Relying on written correspondence alone eliminates the opportunity for collaboration (and, usually, the best solution), and I want the very best for your book.

Email support. For four months, I’ll be an email away. If you run into a roadblock, I’ll help you resolve it. If you aren’t sure if something is working, ask. I’ll support you as you do the work necessary to take your book to the next level.

What this offering will include:

  • Two to three complete read throughs of your 50,000 – 125,000 word book, with my editorial feedback
  • Four hours of Skype or phone conversations
  • Four months of email support

What you gain as a result of our work together:

  • an invested, supportive partner for the duration of the revision process
  • a manuscript that is ready to be proofread by another editor
  • peace of mind, knowing that your book is as effective as possible

Your financial commitment: $1950

Ready to make your book glow?

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Some common questions:

What if my project isn’t a good fit for the typical process? Our initial conversation (or, if you’d prefer, you can send me an email) would be a great time to talk about this. Sometimes a book just needs two developmental edits. Or you’re on a timeline, and you’d prefer we get everything done at once.  We’ll come up with a solution that works for both of us–just let me know.

Does this offering include proofreading? No. It’s best practice from an editorial standpoint to have fresh eyes proofreading your book.

What if my book is longer than 125,000 words or shorter than 50,000 words? Just let me know during our conversation or send me an email. I’ll let you know how the package price is impacted by the length of your project.

What happens if we don’t agree on a solution? This is totally okay–I will do my best to support you in implementing the solution you decide is best.

What if it takes me more than six months to revise my book? I know that sometimes life gets in the way. We can talk about this eventuality and come up with a solution that works for you during the revision stage if it looks like things are going to take more time than anticipated.

What if I want more one-on-one time while I’m working through the revisions? If you’re someone who knows they like more personal support, just let me know during our initial conversation. We can come up  with a solution that feels good for you.

Let’s get started.

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