Are you an author nearly done with the manuscript? Great! Now it’s time to get a book editor. A book editor goes through your manuscript critically in order to prepare the first draft of the book or novel. Book editors can be expensive but the pricing more or less depends on how long your book is and what genre it is.
There are also certain availability issues. For example, it’s generally more difficult to find proficient book editors willing to edit and proofread a sci-fi novel.
There’s a minimum qualification you need your editor to have. Always pick an editor who has worked on the genre you’re writing in.
What does a book editor do?
A book editor’s responsibilities include editing the written words to improve the manuscript and suggesting changes in terms of flow, consistency, understandability, readability, and overall error-freeness.
Good editors usually point out structural changes and fallacies in the written word. Editors are often a better version of a reader in many ways. For example, they can articulate precisely what’s wrong, find more nuanced mistakes in any text, and offer valuable suggestions based on their years of experience.
Do you need a book editor?
If you’ve recently finished a manuscript then yes, you now need an editor.
Getting a text reviewed by an editor is bound to make it much better and more accurate. It’s a concern for many authors that an editor might take away from the originality or creativity in some way.
But it doesn’t hurt to have a professional opinion – especially from someone whose entire job description is to improve upon and find mistakes in a manuscript.
Honestly, you cannot go wrong with an editor. If you have specific reservations regarding the creativity of your work then you can clearly put them in front of the editor and ask them to try their best to keep things as they are.
An editor will also be able to evaluate whether or not your manuscript is good enough for a reputable publisher – though that’s not always the case.
Where can you find a book editor?
Finding book editors online has become quite the norm now. Long gone are the days when you had to roam the streets or travel to other cities with your manuscript.
Now it’s as easy as searching online, doing your research, finding the right fit, discussing the details, and sharing the online version of your manuscript for them to go over it.
Alternatively, you can also find agencies devoted to editing and proofreading work.
Checklist for finding the suitable book editor
There is a certain process that you should follow when you’re shopping for a suitable editor for your written manuscript.
- Limit your search to the relevant genre only. Try to find editors who have plenty of expertise in helping authors who write on similar topics as you.
- An active communication channel is extremely important once you have chosen an editor. Don’t ask for updates or pester an editor – they have their own pace and style. But make sure you’re always there to hear feedback or give input. Books only succeed if the author and the editor work together so that it has the best of both worlds – good creativity and originality as well as a perfect structure and error-freeness.
- Search for local editors or agencies first. Only increase the radius if you can’t find any in your area. This allows you to have face-to-face discussions every once in a while.