Why do I need a professional editor? Even if you’ve read your work a dozen times, a professional editor will find things that you missed. As a writer, I’m too close to my own work to be objective about it, as are most authors, which is why an outside, professional opinion is so beneficial.
Can’t my family and friends tell me what I need to fix? No matter how many times friends and family members promise to give you their honest, objective opinions about your work, chances are they won’t. You’ll most likely get responses along the lines of “It was wonderful!” or “It was so beautifully done that I wouldn’t change a thing.” The only thing this kind of feedback serves as is ego padding, which you don’t need. What you need is someone who will evaluate your work with an objective eye and give you his or her honest, sympathetic, and, if necessary, ruthless opinion on the issues that need your attention. That is the job of a professional editor.
What if I don’t agree with a professional editor’s suggestions? A key element to remember is that you don’t have to agree with everything a professional editor says, although you should evaluate all comments and suggestions. Chances are that if one person noticed a problem in your manuscript, other people will too. But remember, this manuscript is your baby, and in the end, you’re the one who has to decide what to change and what to leave alone.
Will you tear my work to shreds? There will probably be many changes, but each one is designed to help improve your manuscript and to make it the best it can be. Also, I am a firm believer in constructive criticism. This means that I will tell you what I like about the book and will constructively and kindly point out areas that need improvement. I will never be mean or insulting about your work. Do you edit my genre? The short answer is yes. I love editing a variety of genres and discovering books that I may never have found otherwise. Some of my favorite genres are historical fiction, mystery, thriller, horror, paranormal, and fantasy, but I’m open to anything with captivating characters and an exciting plot. Besides fiction, I’ve also edited nonfiction, business materials, academic dissertations, and more.
Am I ready for professional editing? Is your book the best you can make it? Have you edited it extensively yourself and have now reached the point where you don’t feel you can do anything else? If your answer is yes, then you are definitely ready to hire a professional editor. Professional editing is the next step after self-editing and is designed to help prepare your book for publication.