Is it just me, or is the cost of hiring a professional editor outrageous? Especially for an indie author with a modest budget and no idea whether he or she will receive a return on investment.
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 on editing. And if you convert that to actual dollars...
proofreading and copy-editors will cost you between $1000 and $3000 per book, and
be prepared to shell out $5000 to $10000 for a developmental editor.
As you can see, the math ain't math-ing! 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? You can save on editing costs by enlisting Beta Readers to read your book.
A beta reader is someone who 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, the less a professional editor has to fix, so...
you will have the opportunity to improve your book 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 they 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 about the sequel.
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. Let me say, they understood the assignment! To show appreciation, I mentioned them in the Acknowledgement section of my book.
I want to help you save on editing costs too! I've taken the checklists, worksheets, and prompts I gave my beta readers, and I've compiled them into the Ultimate Beta Reader ToolKit. The kit contains:
Spelling and Punctuation Review Forms: To document the page, paragraph, and sentence of 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: To 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 read 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's yours FREE!