By Lucas Beechinor
Congratulations! Your manuscript is complete and ready for publication . . . Or is it? No matter how much time you’ve spent polishing your work, attending workshops, or reading about how to get published, there’s nothing quite as valuable as a trained, professional set of eyes reading your manuscript. Period.
It’s easy for authors to miss errors in their work for a number of reasons. There’s either a rule on grammar or punctuation they just don’t know about, or they’ve become so familiar with their writing that their eyes fly right over mistakes, some big, some small, but all of them worth correcting. Consistent errors and sloppy style are major turn offs for agents and editors. It’s added work for them and it will slow down the publishing process. You also have to remember how many submissions publishers get in the mail: thousands and thousands and thousands per year. The competition you’re up against is staggering. If there’s a manuscript that’s better written than yours, chances are, the publisher’s picking that one. Hiring an editor will eliminate some of that competition, guaranteed.
There are authors who are intimidated by editors, or afraid they’ll destroy their work. Don’t be afraid. A great editor will recognize your writing style and enhance it, bringing consistency, clarity, and correctness to the edited work. It’s an editor’s job to help you get published, and a good one has as much passion for the written word as you do. Find one with experience, discuss a rate and a timeframe, and then let the magic begin.
There are a few levels of editing your piece might need. It could involve developmental editing of the story itself, or restructuring at the sentence level, or a round or two of copyediting, in which the work is read letter for letter, and checked for every possible mistake.
Editors shouldn’t take the wheel in interpreting the story. They’re the passengers, alerting you to the rules of the road, and suggesting enhancements that will get you to your readers (and sales) faster than you could on your own. Many editors are also deeply connected with the publishing world at large, and they’ll be happy to point you towards a specific publisher or agent who might be looking for a manuscript just like yours.
So, check us out. Give us a call. Send us an E-mail. We’re happy to discuss your project and its potential needs.