DSC_8915-25edI love helping authors polish their work. With my journalism degree and years of experience, I can help you take your manuscript from so-so to spectacular. Aside from the three industry-standard levels of edit, I’m pleased to announce two new options for writers–a high-level critique and one-on-one mentoring.

Not sure if your story is working? Wondering if your hero is multi-layered and complex enough? Need another look at your plot? At this level of edit, I will read your manuscript for overall issues–Goal, Motivation, Conflict; Point-of-View; Show-don’t-Tell; and more. I will highlight and and explain each issue the first time I see it, then give you feedback on the story as a whole.

Designed for newer writers and writers who’ve struggled to break into traditional publishing, the mentoring service is a great way to learn and practice the skills necessary for crafting compelling novels. We work together on short chunks of the novel at a time. I edit, make lots of suggestions, and return the document. The writer takes the suggestions, asks questions for clarity, and then applies those suggestions to the entire novel, thus cementing that skill. We might work on point-of-view at one time, show-don’t-tell another. By the time the mentoring process is finished, not only have we edited an entire manuscript, but the writer has improved his or her writing skills.

Substantive Edit
I dissect story lines for plot holes and investigate overall development and inconsistencies. I ensure that characters are multi-layered and interesting.  I address pace and readability as well, all the while protecting (and perhaps helping you develop) your individual voice. At this level, I assist you as you edit your story, helping you transform it into your best work possible. I also highlight grammatical, punctuation, and word issues the first time I see them. I will do some light re-writing and make suggestions on wording issues.

At the copyedit level, I check grammar, punctuation, and word usage. I look for consistency and ensure the story flows properly. I propose changes that make the manuscript more readable. You may find no-nonsense comments like, show, don’t tellchapter opening needs work, or replace this cliché with something fresh.

At the proofreading level, I correct grammar and punctuation. I don’t accept a manuscript at this level unless it has already been thoroughly edited.

I charge by the page. The amount varies from $1.25 per page for a light critique up to $6 per page depending on the level of edit desired and the state of the manuscript. (For more information about industry-standard rates, see the Editorial Freelance Association.) For a quote, email the first few pages to me at robin@robinpatchen.com. Include in the email the answer to the following questions, so I can get a feel for where you are as an author and the state of the overall manuscript.

1-what is the genre?
2-how long is the book?
3-what kind of editing are you looking for, or do you want me to make a recommendation?
4-what is your plan for the MS—self-publishing, traditional publishing? Do you have an agent and/or a contract on this novel?
5-has the MS been critiqued and/or edited previously?
6-what’s your publishing history?

Getting Started
Wondering if a freelance editor is for you? Check out this excellent article at BlueInk for more information about having your manuscript edited. I’ll be happy to look at the first two pages of your manuscript and give you a quote for the services above. Email me at robin@robinpatchen.com for more information.