Indie authors with modest budgets can't afford professional editors. Why?
At least four different types of editors are needed to ensure that a manuscript evolves from a raw idea to a polished and marketable book...and they charge per hour or word.
Developmental editors, also known as substantive or content editors, focus on the big picture of a manuscript. They work closely with authors to refine the book's overall structure, plot, characters, and pacing.
Copy editors examine a manuscript's details. They focus on grammar, syntax, punctuation, and style to ensure the text is clear, consistent, and error-free.
Line editors concentrate on the sentence level, working to improve the flow and clarity of the writing. They address awkward phrasing, word choice, and sentence structure.
Proofreaders are the final line of defense against errors before a book goes to print. They meticulously review the text for typos, spelling mistakes, and formatting issues. Proofreading is a crucial step to catch any remaining errors that may have been overlooked during earlier stages of editing.
Many editors base their editing costs on the number of pages in your book. Others charge by word count or the number of hours they spend editing. And if you convert that to actual dollars...
Proofreading and Copy editors will cost you between $1000 and $3000 per book, and
Developmental editors charge from $5000 to $10000.
As you can see, you'd have to sell many books to recoup a fraction of your spending, and you'd have to sell even more to turn a profit.
But guess what? I have developed a way for you to save on editing costs by utilizing Beta Readers.
A beta reader reads your manuscript and helps you find misspelled words, grammatical errors, story inconsistencies, plot holes, etc. They have one job. And that's to provide constructive feedback that will help you pre-edit your manuscript before you send it to an editor.
Why is this important? Because...
When you send your completed first draft to a Beta reader, they will identify issues before you send it to a professional editor. Therefore...
you will have the opportunity to fix major problems before hiring an editor,
the editor will spend less time editing and
you will save more money on editing costs.
I utilized five beta readers when I wrote my debut novel, Sweet Dreams Boutique. They were extremely effective and pointed out things in my story that I hadn't seen. Even though I'd been working on the book for a year and a half!
I was specific about what I wanted them to do, and they did it. Their feedback and critique spurred me to add additional plot points, strengthen the climax, and conclude the book in a way that keeps readers excited and engaged.
Best of all, they were FREE! I sent my first draft to a teacher who communicates for a living, two avid readers, and a friend who loves books and is detail-oriented. Let me say, they understood the assignment!
My book has received rave reviews, and to show my appreciation, I mentioned them in the Acknowledgement section of my book.
You can save on editing costs, too! I've taken the checklists, worksheets, and prompts I gave my beta readers and compiled them into the Ultimate Beta Reader ToolKit. The kit contains:
Spelling and Punctuation Review Forms: These forms document the page, paragraph, and sentence for any misspelled or misused words or punctuation issues.
Readability Review Forms: To document sentences that are too wordy, unclear, redundant, or confusing; issues with pacing or flow; and anything else that impacted their ability to enjoy the book.
Likeability Review Prompts: Questions they must answer regarding the characters, plots, dialogue, descriptions, title, and other issues that affect the book's overall likeability; a
Forms for Additional Notes, and a
Call to Action: Direct them to recommend your book on social media, with a link to purchase the book, and write a review on Amazon, Goodreads, and other sites when the book is published.
Each beta reader said the checklists and forms I sent helped guide them in the right direction and saved them the headache of trying to figure out what I needed. It was a win-win!!
So, before you spend time and money on your editor, send your manuscript to beta readers first. And when you do, provide them with the Ultimate Beta Reader Toolkit!!
It typically costs $9.99, but for a limited time, it's yours FREE!