What type of editor do you need?

Hello, writers! As you’re embarking on your great resolution to FINALLY write that book (well done, you!), here are some pointers to keep in mind as you approach editors. (Post 1/3)

What type of editor do you need?

At this time of year, my inbox is flooded with people looking to hire an editor. I appreciate the business! And hiring an editor is a smart investment in your book. But also: there are different editors for different jobs.

If you’re just starting on your manuscript, a book coach or developmental editor might be the editor you need. These editors help you make sense of the idea and build a plan for your book. I work freelance as a developmental editor and coach. In my flagship program This Is a Book! I co-create your book idea and edit your early work (registration closes January 8). For a sense of my experience and approach, please click here.

If you have a manuscript, you’ll want to line up a substantive editor, ideally one who can also line edit. These editors tackle the logic and flow of the whole manuscript, and they polish the prose.

If you have been through a few rounds of editing and have finalized your manuscript, you’ll want a copy editor. These editors check accuracy of claims, and catch any errors in grammar or punctuation.

And if you have laid out your book in typeset proofs, you’ll want a proofreader. These editors catch any remaining typos and layout issues.

You only need to hire a copy editor and proofreader if you’re self-publishing. If you’re publishing traditionally, you might want to hire a developmental editor and/or a substantive editor, depending on the editorial support provided by the house.

If you’d like to land an agent and publish traditionally, you’ll most likely need a book proposal. Editors who have worked in house and handled acquisitions are, imho, the best candidates for crafting book proposals. Here’s more info on book proposals: https://lnkd.in/g9zZuXbg and https://lnkd.in/g9Jzj7JP

And here’s a helpful guide from Jane Friedman on the different types of editors: https://lnkd.in/gJ8vx2iV I recommend all of Jane’s many resources on writing, editing, and publishing.

In my next post: tips on how to find an editor.

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