Are You Ready For An Editor?
Questions to ask yourself before you hit send.
- Is this your first draft? If yes, stop. Editors should not be reviewing first drafts.
- Have you read it through? Made sure you’ve read your manuscript with a critical eye?
- Has this been seen by a critique partner or beta reader? Have you made revisions based on the feedback given?
- Have you checked for spelling errors?
- Have you checked for punctuation errors?
- Do you have passive writing? Checked for words such as heard, looked, thought, wondered, decided, realized, noticed, saw, so, that, just, very? Can you delete these words or replace them with choices that add depth or action?
- Have you checked for and replaced excessive repetitive words?
- Do you head hop? Is the point of view clear?
- Are you using all five of the senses?
- Are your characters compelling? Do they express emotions? Will readers be invested in them? Want to read more about them, root for them or against them?
- Does every scene have a purpose? If not, have you deleted or revised accordingly?
- Does the pacing slow down with extraneous scenes, clunky and unnecessary wording, exposition or backstory?
- Does the plot follow through to an ending? Do the sub-plots, if any, tie in to the ending or are satisfied?
- Is there a satisfactory ending?
While editors can fix all these flaws, they are not teachers of craft. Editors can help with developmental needs, line-editing the details, as well as final proofing. But we want to make sure clients are getting the most from their money. If you have not addressed the concerns above, you may not be ready for editing or will see multiple passes at every editing stage, which can and will be costly.