Copy editing

What does a copy editor do?

 

A copy editor looks at your manuscript before it is put into publication layout.

 

When I copy edit, I check grammar, usage, spelling, punctuation, consistency of style; consistency of characters, illustrations, and storyline.  I fact check. I look at representation of individuals and cultures. I think about word frequency. As a former comprehension-focused language teacher, I also put myself in the place of a student reader and notice places where clarification is needed. This is substantive editing.

I copy edit texts in English, French, and Spanish.

How much will it cost?

 

I charge by the hour for copy editing, at $35 per hour.

This covers my reading of your manuscript in MS Word or PDF format, flagging issues and making suggestions directly on the document. I will return the document to you with my comments, summarizing the major issues and any overarching observations via email.

Any follow-up conversation, reading, and commentary is also billed at $35 per hour.

How long will it take you to
copy edit my manuscript?
Steps to publishing your comprehensible reader

For information on getting your manuscript ready for editing, check out the documents and videos available at these links:

Steps filled on white.png
Quick steps to a reader-friendly manuscript
QuickSteps recap.png
basset-hound-3551148_1280.jpg

Estimating a copy editing job is tough, especially if this is our first time working together. Based on my work with over 30 authors on over 80 books, I can tell you this:

  • It takes me between 15 minutes and 2 hours to copy edit 1,000 words;
    I average 1,200 words per hour.

  • I include the glossary in my word count. It can take almost as long to edit the glossary as the story.

  • It makes a big difference if you have done the formatting suggested in our Quick steps to a reader-friendly manuscript video or handout.

Anny 2016 selfie small.jpg

Anny Ewing, copy editor