Saturday, April 27, 2013

Hire. An. Editor.

May I just take this opportunity to say, if you are planning to self-publish:

Hire. An. Editor.

It doesn't have to be me, though if you check out the client testimonial tab at the top of this blog, you'll see my mounting collection of stellar reviews. All make me feel like I've just sipped hot cider on a snowy day.

I beg of you, hire someone.

Remember my side gig as a paid ebook reviewer? As of this post, I've reviewed twenty-seven books, all self-published. Guess how many of them had errors. Ga-head. Guess.

Yep. All twenty-seven. And that's forgiving the formatting errors.

I'm reading these novels for free and the errors tick me off. Imagine the consumers who parted with their favorite Starbucks frap for a day or sacrificed their weekly washing quarters to make the purchase.

Some of the editing needs were Herculean. I barely coughed out two stars on my reviews. Shame on them. Just because Nana's bridge club thinks your book is delightful doesn't mean it's ready. Have some respect for your readers' time and money. Put the manuscript down and step away from the self-publishing manuals.

Some of the editing needs were a transposed word or a tiny continuity issue. Little errors are speedbumps to the reader's full immersion in the story. It doesn't happen in traditional publishing, and if you want to make money in this industry, it shouldn't happen with your self-published book.

Chuck Sambuchino has great advice for finding the perfect editor and some FAQs on the topic over at the Writer Unboxed blog. I always offer test edit pages, free of charge, to potential clients. Two of my clients purchased first chapter edits from multiple editors (one of them ten!) before ultimately selecting me as their editor. This gives me a chance to showcase my skills and gives the client the confidence that I'm the best fit for his/her project.

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I'm starting a YA fantasy ghostwriting project next week that will carry me well into autumn. I would love to hear from you if you are interested in editing or ghostwriting. Drop me a line anytime at la-mitchell@la-mitchell.com. I'm booked until November, so be sure to plan ahead. Even if you're not looking to hire, I'm happy to answer questions and point you in the right direction. Meanwhile, I have two paranormal romance ghost projects set for release in the next few weeks. Be sure you're signed up for my newsletter to get the latest scoop.

3 comments:

the walking man said...

I'd hire an editor--it's good advice. 'Cept I have published all I want to publish.

When does Laura find time to write for Laura?

L.A. Mitchell said...

@WM...*that* is an excellent question. At least not until November. Then it's soul-searching time. I may have to schedule myself to get time with myself ;)

Thanks for stopping by, old friend. Hope you are well :)

Charles Gramlich said...

I do see errors in most of the self published books I read, but often some in the publisher published ones as well. More eyes on the final product is always a good idea, though.