FAQ

FREQUENTLY ASKED QUESTIONS

What are the different types of editing?

Great question! Generally, editing will be broken down into three categories: developmental editing (a.k.a. substantive editing), which looks at your manuscript on a big-picture level and deals in things like plot, character, story structure, and pacing; line editing (a.k.a. stylistic editing), which looks at your writing itself on a creative level and deals in things like flow, word choice, dialogue, and the emotional impact of your writing; and copy editing, which looks at your writing on a technical level and deals in things like readability, style, and clarity.

What's the difference between copy editing and proofreading?

​copy editor will examine your manuscript critically, make style choices, do light fact-checking, and assemble a unique style sheet for your book. They will also flag inconsistencies and other issues, and will communicate with you, the author, via queries.

Conversely, a proofreader will example your manuscript with the assumption that every word is as its intended to be, and will only look for technical errors in spelling, grammar, punctuation, and formatting. They will adhere to the copy editor's style sheet but not make one of their own.

What are your rates?

My rates will vary since every project is unique, but my pricing is in line with the standard rates of the Editorial Freelance Association. (Note: if you book a line edit, subsequent edits will often be cheaper since I will already be familiar with your manuscript.)

To request a custom quote, please visit my booking page.

How long does editing take?

As with rates, this will vary depending on the needs of your unique project. A base estimate for a 70,000 word novel would be: 2 weeks to proofread, 4 weeks to copy edit, and 6 weeks to line edit (one complete pass). For a more accurate estimate, please visit my booking page.

I'm worried that an editor will ruin my book. What if they don't understand my vision?

This is a valid concern! It's scary to hand your baby over to a complete stranger, and sometimes it's true that even a great editor will simply not jibe with your book for any number of reasons. This is why I always offer sample edits (they're like an audition to see if we complement each other) and will always be up-front if I think I'm not a good fit for your story.

Editing, especially creative editing, is subjective. You don't always have to agree with everything your editor says, and an editor can never tell you what to do with your book. We can only make suggestions and explain our thoughts, but the final say is always yours.

What genres do you edit?

I'll edit any genre, but my favorites are literary fiction, contemporary fantasy, and queer lit.

Do you edit children's books?

Sure! I specialize in YA and adult fiction, but I will edit content for any age group.

Do you edit nonfiction?

Generally, no, but I may make exceptions for memoirs and other creative nonfiction projects that don't require heavy fact-checking or source citation.

Is there any other content you won't edit?

I don't edit content that is hateful or promotes bigoted ideas or behavior.

Have a question not listed here?

No problem! Drop me a line at alexchiccola@gmail.com and we'll chat.