The Editing Process

For all services, I’ll do a no-cost, no-obligation sample edit of several pages to determine the level of editing required. If you agree with my evaluation and editing style and choose to proceed, I’ll provide a service agreement for the project, which will include a timeframe for completion. I require a one-third down payment before editing begins to secure a spot on my calendar.

Please be aware that to deliver the best final product for your manuscript, I highly recommend more than one service for copyediting and structural editing. For example, after all changes have been made during the copyediting process, it would be ideal to then have your manuscript go through the proofreading process to ensure a polished final product. For clients choosing more than one service for a project, I give a 10% discount.

The Publishing Process

A typical nonfiction manuscript will need to go through several editing stages, and self-publishing authors will need some additional publishing services: 

  • Structural editing is clarifying or reorganizing for content and structure and usually (but not always) includes some rewriting and reorganization of the text. Structural editing can be considered content editing for nonfiction. I also include copyediting in my structural editing rate. 
  • Copyediting focuses on spelling, grammar, syntax, punctuation, and word use and consistency of style. It also includes fact-checking. I verify Bible verses, check for missed words, watch for paragraph lengths and word choices, and ensure the work meets editorial guidelines according to The Chicago Manual of Style (or The SBL Handbook of Style) and The Christian Writer’s Manual of Style
  • After the editing is complete, the manuscript can be formatted. This is also called interior book design or typesetting. It’s what makes the book attractive to the reader. Once formatted, you’ll get a print-ready PDF that you can upload to Amazon KDP or send to your printer. 
  • Your book will need a cover design, which is usually done by a graphic artist. Having a striking cover is critical to self-published books. In other words, it shouldn’t look like a self-published book but one put out there by a traditional publisher. Cover design can range in price from $75 to around $250, depending on how complicated the cover will be.
  • Once the book has been formatted, it should be proofread. Some authors mistakenly think this step comes right after the editing, but it must be done after the formatting so that the proofreader not only catches the small errors in grammar and punctuation but also any slipups that happened during the formatting with the table of contents, headings, page numeration, and so on.
  • Back-of-the-book indexing (general, or subject, indexes), including Scripture indexes and name indexes, will be the last stage for a hardcover or paperback book before it is sent to the printer.
  • Then eBook formatting is getting a book converted so it can be read on Kindles and other eReaders. Nonfiction eBook formatting prices depend largely on the number of items in the table of contents and the number of graphics/pictures, special formatting like callouts and boxes, and footnotes and endnotes.
  • For my self-publishing authors, I also offer publishing assistance, and this includes such things as consulting about book prices and publishing options as well as actual help with uploading to Amazon KDP and Smashwords.

I hope you’ve found this list helpful to understand the various stages of publishing a book. Many authors do not realize how involved the process can be, and most are not aware of the costs associated with publishing a book the right way. Sure, nowadays anyone can throw anything out there, and unfortunately, there are quite a few “bargain” editors lurking on the internet who charge dollar-store prices to help you do that. But if you want your project done properly and professionally the first time around, you’ll want a skilled editor with experience behind them to assist you in your publishing efforts, and I am that editor.

So contact me today, and let’s talk about your project.