Monday, March 2, 2009

Paying for editing?

So, I was asked recently whether or not an author should pay for editing.

IMHO, I think it is a perfect waste of time... Unless you are someone that doesn't understand the basic rules of grammar and then I question why you think you should even be writing.

Let me explain.

First of all, there are plenty of sources out there for writers to use to check their writing. Learn from your own common mistakes and you will make fewer errors on future manuscripts.

Secondly, most editors and agents are not that picky when it comes to a few (please note I said a few) errors that come up in your work. Now, with that said, remember that a sloppy manuscript tells me you don't know enough about writing so why would I want to sign you. Remember also that at most 4 year universities, 5 mistakes on the first page will equal a failing grade. In publishing, it simply means you will not get published.

Finally, these people that charge for editing are simply using the tools you have available to you. Most just have MSWord set for checking on everything and then scan it. With all of the mistakes found, the changes are easy fixes.

So, think before you pay


  1. You mean copy editing, right? There are other types of editing that might be worth the money.

  2. Yes, I was dealing with copy editing, but I also have to add book doctoring. Sure, there are some places that do great work, but for the most part, this is simply one person's POV and it might not be the best for the type of writing you are doing or the publisher you are targeting. Besides, I think with the right critique group, made up of published and unpublished authors, you can often get a lot of that great feedback that you would pay for with someone else