I know about the time and energy you’ve invested in your manuscript because I’ve done it myself. I’ve spent the same hours laughing, crying, and trying to understand my characters and the story I’m trying to tell. I will treat your manuscript with the utmost of respect and sanctity. If you come to The Write Edge for your editing needs, you will encounter an editor who has a passion for her work and for helping you shine.
No doubt you have lots of questions about what I do. Great — I have answers! Here are a list of FAQs, including my rates.
Please pay attention to the information below. Doing so will help you, the writer, and also me, your editor, in making your venture that much more successful.
What do you edit/critique?
My assessment and editing experience includes women’s fiction, historical fiction, YA novels, steampunk, short stories (both individual stories as well as full anthologies,) how-to guides, and memoirs. I edit novels and shorter pieces. I’m happy to discuss either fiction or nonfiction projects. Don’t be afraid to pose your questions to me. I’m a firm believer in the adage that the only stupid question is the one you didn’t ask.
Is there anything you won’t edit or critique?
There are many talented writers out there breaking new ground in poetry, LGBQT fiction, erotica, and romance. However, I don’t read these genres or write in them, so I wouldn’t be qualified to help you if you do. More than getting paid for my work, it’s important to me that you find a person who understands what you’re creating. That’s why you should seek out an editor who does edit these genres. That person isn’t me, though.
I also shy away from any material with overtly explicit content. If you’re unsure whether I would consider your manuscript content explicit, please contact me with a sample.
Okay, but how do I know if you’re any good? Do you have any experience in this stuff?
Great question, and a totally fair one. So, a little about me:
In 2002 I earned my MSJ (Master’s of Science in Journalism) in magazine publishing from the Medill School of Journalism at Northwestern. My career in publishing started in 2005 when I became the editor for all special projects out of Community Newspapers, Inc., (now Pamplin Media Group) in Portland, Oregon. I started blogging in 2010 and became a freelance writer/editor in 2011, taking on projects that have run the gamut from health care to home improvement to Hindi films.
Currently I’m the Content Coordinator of the Neighbors of SW Champaign magazine produced by Best Version Media. The magazine focuses exclusively on local families, businesses, nonprofits, and sports. In this managing editor role, I write articles for the magazine and coordinate with the publishers and local individuals to produce new content for the monthly publication.
As a tandem to my editing career, I sit as a judge in writing competitions by great organizations like the Champaign Public Library, the Florida Writers’ Association, and the Saturday Writers, a chapter of of the Missouri Writers Guild. You can also hear me taking a deep dive into books as the host of Biblio Breakdown, the book analysis podcast that started on The Writescast Network (created and hosted by author r.r. campbell) and now lives on my own author site.
I’ve worked with new writers and experienced ones alike. My writers have found themselves on the USA Today Bestseller list, and they’ve also experienced the satisfaction of finishing that first or second novel. Their happiness and success makes me excited to be working in this industry!
Thanks for the intro; what about my project?
If we’re meeting for the first time, I’ll offer you a sample edit free of charge. The sample edit is completely optional. If you decide to take it, please send me a summary of your story so I know how best to approach the sample.
If you’re sending me a sample from a novel, send about 3000 words from the middle. If you’d like to send a sample of a short story, please email me so we can talk about the size of the sample before you send it.
So how should I send my story to you? PDF? Word doc? Carrier pigeon?
(Don’t use pigeons. I don’t need the Carrier Pigeons Union pecking at my windows again.)
For more conventional options, please format your document according to the following requirements to expedite the editing process.
I edit in Word, so any version of a Word doc is fine.
Your manuscript should be double spaced in 12-point font.
Please use a basic readable font like Times or Times New Roman; the curly stuff that looks like handwriting is pretty but not practical at all for editing.
Margins should be one inch all the way around (that’s top, bottom, left, and right — no cheating!)
If your document isn’t formatted according to these guidelines, I can’t start editing. That means you have to wait longer for it to get done. Which means carrier pigeons visiting you with the bad news that you didn’t format the story correctly, and, believe me, you don’t want to mess with the CP mob. [voice drops to dramatic whisper] They’re scary!
So what editing services, specifically, do you offer? Do you rewrite stuff? Are you a ghostwriter?
Seeing as I’m still alive and in good health—and plan to remain so for the foreseeable future—the answer to that last question is No.
I also don’t rewrite whole paragraphs or pages, but occasionally I will suggest alternatives to sentences.
Here’s what I do offer:
Brainstorm Burst—If you’re just stuck on a spot or simply want to talk through something in a story, I’m happy to give you 30 minutes of my time via phone or Zoom so we can brainstorm ways to get you writing again.
Line editing—dealing with making sentences read more smoothly; pointing out minor continuity issues or errors; typos, punctuation errors, and grammar mistakes
Manuscript assessment—reading your manuscript and offering a constructive and detailed critique of your plot, characters, story structure, and more. MAs typically run a minimum of five pages (single spaced) and often go to seven or eight pages long.
Combination of Line editing and Manuscript assessment—offering both services described above in the same manuscript.
And how much are you charging for the different services?
This is how much each service costs. Please pay attention to the notes after the rates:
30-minute Brainstorm Burst: $45
For editing manuscripts less than 2,500 words:
- Line editing—$50
- Manuscript assessment—$70
- Combination package—$90
For short stories—manuscripts between 2,500 words and 10,000:
- Line editing—$1.50/page
- Manuscript assessment—$2.00/page
- Combination package—$2.50/page
For novelettes and novellas—manuscripts between 10,000 and 40,000 words:
- Line editing—$1.75/page
- Manuscript assessment—$2.25/page
- Combination package—$2.75/page
For novels—manuscripts between 40,000 words and 80,000 words:
- Line editing—$2.00/page
- Manuscript assessment—$2.50/page
- Combination package—$3.00/page
For longer novels—between 80,000 words and 90,000 words:
- Line editing—$2.50/page
- Manuscript assessment—$3.00/page
- Combination package—$3.50/page
If your book comes in somewhere between 90,000 and 95,000 words, I would consider editing it if my schedule allows. Please get in touch so we can talk about your project of this length. I don’t edit or assess novels longer than 95,000 words.
Here’s a tip for new writers. Unless you’re writing an epic fantasy, anything above 95,000 is most likely too long for serious publication. My heartfelt recommendation is that you leave the manuscript alone for at least a month and then go back to it. Chances are, you’ll see places that you can make cuts. Do that and see how much the word count might go down. If, at that time, you’d like to talk about hiring me to edit your novel, definitely get in touch!
If you feel like the word count absolutely can’t go down, that it’s really justified being that long, it’s highly possible you might have two regular-length books instead of one long one. Rethink your manuscript with that in mind, and see what happens. Look for a natural break where you can visualize a cliffhanger that would lead naturally into a second book.
I want you to succeed; I want to make sure your book is the absolute best it can be. Pursuing publication means facing certain facts about how the industry works, though, and word count/book length is one of them. There’s also the possibility that the plotting might need work, which goes back to cutting down the word count.
If you have any questions about any of this, feel free to reach out so we can just chat. An informal conversation costs you nothing other than the willingness to stay open to new ideas.
If you’ve chosen a phone/Zoom consultation, the fee must be paid before we speak. Additionally, you’ll need to send me a summary of your story/novel in advance as well as your questions. This doesn’t mean you can’t ask more when we speak; of course you can! I just like to maximize the amount of time we have and also give you space to ask more questions that might come up on the spot without feeling pressured by the time or the cost.
For editing, once we’ve made an agreement via email, I’ll send you an invoice. I’ll also send a contract that you must review, initial, and sign. You also must send the entire manuscript before any editing begins.
**If you choose to use PayPal for payment, please be aware that an additional service fee will be added to the rates above. This fee is 3.49 percent of the plus 49 cents of the total charge for editing.
PayPal charges me this feel to conduct transactions, and because so many people have begun using PayPal I find it almost prohibitive to accept payments via the service if I don’t pass the fee on.
It’s unfortunate, and I realize that. I also accept the following forms of payment that don’t have an additional fee: personal checks; money orders; Western Union; buckets of quarters.
(Not really. Well, okay, maybe. You would probably have to email me about that last one.)
I have other questions (and now I’m a little worried about those carrier pigeons.) How can I get a hold of you?
You can leave a comment here on the blog or just email me via the address below. Thanks for stopping by today!
Ekta R. Garg
Email: egarg0201 (at) gmail (dot) com
Address: P.O. Box 329
Savoy, IL 61874