STORY SERVICES FOR BOOK WRITERS
MANUSCRIPT CRITIQUE/ ASSESSMENT
A general, big-picture analysis and assessment of your manuscript with detailed comments and suggestions regarding major story points, such as premise, plot and structure, voice, character development and character voice, themes, style, clarity, pacing, and consistency. Suggestions offered with regard to strengthening or refocusing the core intentions of the book; insuring the narrative voice works; restructuring the plot as needed to maximize the narrative's impact; and expanding characters, subplots, story threads, etc., that feel under-developed. Particularly effective for first or early drafts, when line or substantive editing is not yet needed. A critique can help a writer decide what is needed next with regard to a project—another authorial revision, a developmental edit, line editing, copyediting, proofreading, etc. Written in the form of an Editorial Memo, and followed up with either by phone or email, depending in your preference and needs.
Rate: $3/manuscript page.
The most in-depth edit available consisting of two parts: an editorial critique/assessment, as described above but at a micro and more detailed level, followed by a line-by-line intensive edit to ensure a book is clear, readable and enjoyable, and its premise, ideas and intentions successfully conveyed (i.e., making sure what’s in a writer’s head, heart, and imagination gets onto the page and translates to the reader).
The edit of the manuscript will include marginal comments addressing such issues as:
· Story elements – scenes, descriptions, character actions – that can be strengthened in terms of needed tension, details, logic, and clarification
· character arcs that may need strengthened or refashioning for best effect
· Loss in the narrative’s momentum or shifts in focus
· stylistic inconsistencies
The word-by-word edit of the manuscript, done with Word’s Track Changes, may include substantial changes in prose to ensure readability and prose that is clear, coherent, convincing, and compelling:
· Words, phrases and sentences may be trimmed, refashioned and/or restructured to ensure flow, rhythm and pacing;
· Dialogue and/or scenes may be tightened or developed for best effect
· Overuse of specific words will be modified
· The narrative will be checked for content, consistency, clarity and comprehension
· Strengthening the clarity, flow and gracefulness of the prose
· Ensuring effective transitions
· Correctness of grammar, syntax, usage, diction and locution
At the completion of a developmental edit, your manuscript will be highly polished, down to the level of copyediting. The Line Edit is done using Microsoft Word's "Tracking Changes" and "Comments," so that you can easily see the changes and suggestions, and accept, reject, or modify them. Followed up with either by phone or email, based on your preference.
Rate: $.06 per word.
A read-through and concise, very broad assessment of what is and isn't working in a manuscript, from a "reader's perspective," including core issues -- concept, execution, characters, plot and structure -- and readability and marketability. May also provide suggestions for the next best steps for a project.
Rate: $1/manuscript page.
A copyedit is appropriate for a manuscript in its final stages, with no further development, refinement or structural revisions needed, and does not alter the content of the text. The goal of a copy edit is to ensure mechanical correctness, making sure prose is clear, accurate, and correct, and focuses on grammar, punctuation, spelling, hyphenation, terminology and consistency. If you will be traditionally published, your publishing house will have your manuscript copyedited per the house’s style sheet. If you are self-publishing, you may want copyediting prior to printing. Copyediting is done within the manuscript itself, using Microsoft Word's "Track Changes" and "Comments."
Rate: $.025-.045/word depending on the depth of the copyedit, e.g., light, medium or heavy/substantive.
Proofreading is done within the manuscript itself, using Microsoft Word's "Track Changes" and Comments," and focuses on misspellings, typographical errors, grammar and punctuation issues, usage errors, and general clarity.
If you’d like to see what’s involved in an edit and if it will benefit you, submit up to 5,000 words) along with a brief synopsis of the overall story for context, specify the level of edit -- developmental @ $.06/word, copy edit @ $.025-$0.45/word, or proof reading @ $.015/word -- and you will be charged for the number of words submitted. If you contract for additional services, the fee for the Trial Edit will be deducted from your final project invoice.
Improving a query letter to ensure it succinctly and compellingly describes a manuscript, its potential market, and the author's background or platform.
Rate: $75/hour (average: $150)