Editing is necessary to make your indie book polished and professional. But there are many forms of editing and you will need the different kinds at different stages of your novel. I can offer editing services on the two ends of the spectrum–the beginning and the very-sherry end.
Beta Reading | Sex Scene Coaching | Goof Check Final Pass
If you would like a sample edit for either the Beta Reading or Sex Scene Coaching, I can do that free of charge. For Beta, send me the first 5 pages, and for sex scene coaching send me one page, along with your heat level. The sample for the sex scene coaching will be difficult to judge, however, since I will not have the benefit of getting from you the story synopsis and other story info I’d need to do a proper coaching, but it can give you a little bit of an idea of what to expect. Send the sample edit to firstname.lastname@example.org with Sample Edit Request in the subject. Make sure it is a formatted Word doc (.doc, .docx, or .rtf) with 1-inch margins, Times New Roman 12 pt, double spaced.
Looking for a big picture critique of your novel? If it is a romance (and all subgenres except inspirational or dark erotica with dubious consent), and you need a Beta reader but don’t have the time to do the traditional swap with another author, I can provide that support for you. I don’t feel comfortable straying outside of the genre constraints listed above because there are reader expectations I would not be aware of and so would not be giving you the strongest advice.
What I will do is:
- Mark plot inconsistencies
- Mark character issues, the most common being lack of clear goals or proper or missing motivation. This results in characters reviewers sometimes call flat because they appear to only act based on the needs of the plot, not stemming from their own motivations and internal conflicts.
- Mark missing emotional reactions. Big turning point happens and your character just keeps breezing along? Not good.
- Mark awkward or confusing sentences or word choices.
- Mark moments I find humorous (if you’re writing with humor) so you’ll know if you tickled my funny bone
- Mark clichés or tired phrases (like ‘tickled my funny bone’) and encourage you to write fresher
- Mark areas where you’re telling and the moment would probably work stronger shown, especially with a Deeper POV. Conversely, if you’ve shown too much and the moment needs to move forward and telling would work better, I’ll mark that
- Evaluate your chapter and scene openings and closing and see if they’re strong
- Mark continuity issues I notice (hero’s dog was Fluffy in the beginning and later comes Fluffie, that kind of thing)*
Beta reading: $.006/word
What it is not
This is not a guarantee you will not receive bad reviews. No one is immune to that. Just take a look at any well-beloved classic and skip down to their 1-star reviews. You cannot please everyone. Also, I can only work with what is given me–the better shape it is in before I see it, the better I am able to zero in on big picture issues that can help make your work stronger. If a lot of my time is spent having to mark awkward phrases or the plot is just dang confusing, my time will be most spent on those issues, and less on other aspects.
*Continuity issues disclaimer: I will mark what I happen to notice, and I tend to notice more than your average reader, but it doesn’t mean I will catch everything. In order to do that, I’d need to charge a lot more as it would require me to make a Story Bible as I proceeded to ensure that all is internally consistent.
Sex Scene Coaching
Feel like your sex scenes just kind of…lay there? (har har) I can take a look at your scenes and give you advice on how to make them sizzle. I will not rewrite them, as your voice would not be mine, but I can give you pointers on how to punch them up in your own words and in your own manner.
Things I will look at and give you advice on:
- Word choice
- Ensuring it is in Deep POV
- Using all the senses
- Action and reaction
- Emotional layering
- Tied to the characters personalities
- Making sure it’s not “Ikea sex” (insert tab A into slot B)
- Making sure it moves the plot and or character development forward
Sex Scene Coaching: $.02/word
Goof Check Final Pass
My formatting clients like to use this added protection. The book is almost ready to be uploaded. It has gone through a line editor and/or copy editor as well as a proofreader, but you’d still like to have that one final pass to make sure there are no embarrassing typos. That’s where I can come in. If I’m formatting it as well, I’ll format it, and then read it through on my Kindle app and mark any typos, etc., and send that list back to you for consideration. Based on your feedback, I’ll then make changes in the ebook file and give you the finalized versions. If it’s for print formatting, I’d like to do that before I format it for print.
Disclaimer: This is not a substitution for a copyeditor and a proofreader. They are part of your team that is familiar with your voice and your house style. They will be responsible for grammar and punctuation and the like. What I will alert you to are:
- missing words — common when making last minute changes, like accidentally deleting a preposition in a sentence
- double words — common are double the’s or and’s
- homophone issues your copyeditor missed, like reign vs. rein or compliment vs. complement
- typos — sometimes you can accidentally do thkis when you’re quickly making changes your copyeditor or proofreader recommended.
- tense issues — instances where you’re writing in past tense and accidentally use present tense, or vice versa.
- basically any nitpick a reader might notice that was either missed by your proofreader or was introduced when you made that last round of changes.
What this is not for — fixing your grammar and punctuation or awkward and confusing sentences. If the work looks like it did not go through a proper copyeditor and proofreader, I reserve the right to send it back to you for you to hire the appropriate editor for your book’s needs.
Goof Check Final Pass $.002/word