Anyone heard of Freelance Editors?
A few days ago I had an epiphany and it was a pretty obvious one. It came while I was working on one of my chapters and realised that I really hate doing revisions. More precisely: I loathe editing my own work. I’m too close to the work and cannot make unbiased decisions for the life of me.
Then the stars aligned when I stumbled on the world of freelance editing. Before then all my research on editing had pointed to major publishing houses. Then I found an article on freelance editors and heard the pure tone of a single bell stroke.
So what’s the difference, you ask?
Amazon, like most publishing houses, will charge be around $0.025 per word for a full edit using their own editors. Freelance on the other hand charge around $0.0035 per word. With my book being around 100,000 words, give or take, for Amazon that would be $2500. For freelance: $350. Of course you get what you pay for, but, you can reduce risk by spending time on Google and finding and reading reviews of these freelance editors. There are even websites tailored to just that, such as the Editorial Freelancers Association over at http://www.the-efa.org/.
So, with a bit of soul searching, I’ve opted to pursue a freelance editor for my novel, Duilleog: A New Druids Novel (Volume 1). This was a pretty tough decision but it makes sense for all the right reasons. In case you didn’t know: Editors are like rock stars. If they happen to edit a great book and it goes bestseller then their street cred goes way up and they get to charge more. If you are patient (and lucky) you can find a new young editor; still looking to make a name and hungry and eager, and you can get quality editing done for a fraction of the cost. I like to call this Indie Editing. And I love Indie music. So it fits. And let me be honest with myself and you: I suck at editing. Anyone else has to be better, right? Right.
I may have found a freelance editor. First I need to throw her a chapter from my book and then she’ll give me a sample of her work. Then I can decide. My fingers are crossed.
This means that any hope of publishing my book by Christmas is shattered. Why, you cry? A few reasons:
1. I need to complete the first revision before I can think to submit anything to an editor. You CAN’T submit drafts. That is plain rude and I will end up paying for the editing of crap. Crap in, crap out. My first revision will be done by end-November (worst case).
2. I then submit my work to the editor. Editing 100,000 words takes time and I am not just going for a spell check. She will need about a month. This takes us to end-December – but it’s also Christmas and there will be rejoicing – so add a couple of weeks and we’re now at Mid-January, 2015.
3. Once it is edited I need to then go through the recommended changes and either agree or disagree. That will take time. Maybe a month? Hard to say. Depends on how much work is recommended for me to change. We are now into February 2015.
4. Then it goes back to the editor for final revision. March 2015.
5. Then back to me for changes. April 2015.
6. Then I publish. April 2015. Note: I turn 50 on April 9th, 2015. Sounds like a great goal to me.
The plus here, the real takeaway, is that it will be published with a much higher level of professionalism. So you will enjoy it more and that’s the real goal. I want my readers to enjoy my work. The $350 and the extra time is worth it to me. In case you didn’t know this effort of mine is not about making money – this is about getting one of the stories from my head out onto paper so that others can hopefully enjoy it. That’s the dream.