After you’ve rewritten and edited your children’s book manuscript, you may need a professional editor or editorial service to double-check significant sections of your tale or fix minor (but critical) flaws to guarantee you’re ready to submit it to an agency or publisher.
An editor is a person who prepares work for publication by correcting, finessing and polishing it at various levels of complexity. An editorial service can be a single editor’s business, especially if she provides various services (such as proofreading, line editing, and ghostwriting), or it can be a group of editors with distinct areas of competence.
Before choosing someone to work with, you must determine what type of service you require.
The following are the various services that you might be interested in:
- Doctoring of books
- Editing on the line
- Checking and evaluating
- Consultations with authors
- Coach for writers
Identify the editing services that are required
Editorial services can be divided into four categories: editorial assessment, developmental editing, copy editing, and proofreading. With so many different editorial services available, it can be difficult for a novice author to know which type of book edit and which book editor is required.
Review by the Editors
The editorial evaluation is a high-level overview of a manuscript and thus the first step in book editing. An editorial assessment is, at its core, an opportunity for an author to uncover flaws in a book. These could include things like:
- Plot flaws
- Scenes that don’t seem to be in the right sequence
- Unnecessary plot twists
- Characters with no feeling (this is usually an issue of show versus tell)
- vantage point
- Whether or if there is a powerful
- Count the number of words
- suitability for the age group
- Meter and rhyme
- the number of pages
Editing a copy
Copy editing is the second set of eyes that looks for errors that a book editor may have missed and ensures the text is error-free. This could include things like:
- grammatical errors
- Inconsistencies in the story
After a book has been designed and is almost ready to go to the printer, it is proofread. To ensure that introduce no errors, a proofreader checks a copyedited text to the planned pages. They check created pages for things like:
- Unfortunate events
- Stacks of text
- Orphans and widows
- Text overlayed by art
- Page numbers or headers are missing
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2- Set a realistic budget
The cost of a book edit varies based on various factors, not the least of which is the editorial services you’re looking for and the experience of the children’s book editor. The more experience a book editor has, the more they are likely to charge. But with that experience (hopefully) comes a better, more thorough book edit and final product.
I will certainly spend thousands of dollars on self-publishing a children’s book. No matter how beautiful the illustrations are, poorly edited books will receive low reviews. The purpose of a children’s book is to keep a child entertained. More than nice photographs are required. They need a gripping plot to keep their attention, so think twice about skimping on editing.
3- Find a book editor who specializes in the genre of your book
Remember that not all book editors are the same, and some will have professional experience while others will not. Inquire about a possible editor’s previous job experience and if they have any professional training in editing children’s books. While some editors have editing certifications or experience working for established publications, others are self-taught.
There are plenty of book editors, and some of the top places to look are
- Kindle entrepreneur
- Up work
- Editorial freelancers association
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Request a free sample edit
Request a sample edit once you’ve found someone you like. Some editors will give it to you immediately, while others will only do so if you ask. Some will charge a fee, while others will offer it for free. If your book is a novel, an example edit could be the first 1,000 words or the first few paragraphs if it’s a picture book. Every editor is unique and has something unique to offer.
For three reasons, sample edits are essential:
For starters, they give you an idea of how an editor would approach YOUR manuscript. And this is significant. You want to know if you click with someone before spending your money.
Second, a sample edit allows an editor to determine whether or not they enjoy your book.
Third, a sample edit on YOUR book is a great method to see how capable the editor you’re considering is.
Make a contract.
Sign a contract with your editor once you’ve made your decision. You should be able to sign a conventional contract with most freelancers (if not, ask around). Someone you know will have one.) When the book is due to the editor, when it is due back to you, the amount of money to be paid (and when), and the nature of the work to be done should all be included in the contract
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If you’re looking for a professional editor, you should research before hiring someone.
This may be a labour of love for you at first, followed by a commercial transaction, but editing is a business for the editor, regardless of how much she loves your work. And, just as financiers conduct due diligence on companies they wish to buy or invest in, you should conduct due diligence on the editors you choose.
Find a skilled editor for children’s books.
The requirements for children’s novels differ from those for adult literature. You want someone who has worked as a children’s book editor for at least 10 years in respectable children’s book publishing house, with books with Library of Congress numbers, books that have been sold in physical bookstores, and books that can find at a walk-in library.
Inquire whether your editor has written a children’s book or two
If that’s the case, you can infer she’s worked on both sides of the editing table: editing and being edited. An editor who is also a published writer understands what it’s like to have your work critiqued, and she may apply that compassion to your writing.
Find out what clients and coworkers have to say about the editor.
Find out what clients and coworkers have to say about the editor. On her website or the Internet, look for mentioned honours or prizes. You want someone well-liked by at least a few industry insiders and can be reached via e-mail for a confirmation.
Inquire about the education of your editor
Although a university education should not be a deciding factor (some editors are self-taught or have been mentored by the greatest in the industry), knowing that your editor has a passing acquaintance with quality written material throughout the years is reassuring.
Find out what the editor’s fee is.
Some charge $2.50 to $5.00 per page, while others charge by the hour. Others offer a flat fee at first, then increase the fee based on the number of pages in the text. Some charge a per-project cost based on the length of the manuscript and where it is in the writing or editing process.
As you search for an editor, remember that anyone you deal with should be a professional who makes you feel at ease sharing your work. If you have any doubts about the safety of your work, go with your instinct and find someone else.