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Do I need to have my book edited before seeking agents?


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#1 emspirit

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Posted 22 January 2014 - 09:57 AM

I have finished my 93,000 word MG fiction novel and trying to polish my query letter.  I have also looked up some pricing for having my book edited.  It looks expensive. 

 

I am willing to invest in myself but I would like to know that my book has traction.  

 

Some of the costs of editing are from 2 cents/word to 7 cents/word depending on the type of editing requested (ie. copy vs developmental)

 

If I were to have both done it would cost me $8370.  Am I paying too much?  Is it necessary to do now?  

 

Also, if anyone has recommendations for an editor please let me know.  Thanks. 



#2 ami

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Posted 22 January 2014 - 10:08 AM

No, you do not need an editor. Especially at those prices! Find some critique partners and beta readers and trade crits, you're only investment will be time and you'll come away with SO much. Check the want ads forum here for someone looking to help or trade work, twitter just had a #CPmatch hashtag for people looking, CPseek.com, QueryTracker Forum, I also have a post up on my blog matching beta readers until the end of the month. 

 

Good luck!!


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#3 emspirit

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Posted 22 January 2014 - 12:41 PM

Thanks Ami.  I'll get on that. 



#4 wendymarlowe

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Posted 03 February 2014 - 01:58 AM

I will note that 93K sounds VERY long for a MG novel - I don't write MG, so my recall of specific lengths may be off, but it's worth taking a look and seeing if there's something you can shorten.  The wrong word count for your genre can be an instant-reject for many agents.



#5 Jinsune

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Posted 03 February 2014 - 09:21 PM

I have finished my 93,000 word MG fiction novel and trying to polish my query letter.  I have also looked up some pricing for having my book edited.  It looks expensive. 

 

I am willing to invest in myself but I would like to know that my book has traction.  

 

Some of the costs of editing are from 2 cents/word to 7 cents/word depending on the type of editing requested (ie. copy vs developmental)

 

If I were to have both done it would cost me $8370.  Am I paying too much?  Is it necessary to do now?  

 

Also, if anyone has recommendations for an editor please let me know.  Thanks. 

You don't have to invest so much in an editor. There are many who specialize in different things, so no too editors will make the same corrections. As you've mentioned they can be a bit pricey as well. As one person already said, you should get critique partners and beta readers. They'll give you helpful advice, and more for free, you're just swapping stories to edit. If you're set on getting an editor, you'll have to search around and really do your homework. There are some editors that don't have the proper qualifications to work on books and novels. Try getting to know writers in the self-publishing community, and see who edits their work. That might be a good start.

 

Good luck with your edits.



#6 mwsinclair

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Posted 04 February 2014 - 04:04 PM

I definitely think having early readers help you in revising the manuscript is the way to go. And I agree that 93k for an MG novel is too long. I've seen MGs in the 50-60 range. For what it's worth, if you're able to cut back several thousand words, it'll also make a later edit much less expensive, should you choose to to go that route.



#7 JacobH44

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Posted 05 February 2014 - 10:41 PM

I'd recommend beta readers. Many people never pay for editors and they do just fine. Beta readers will act as your first little audience so that will probably give you a good idea of whether or not your book has any bite. Good luck!


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#8 Andrea Lambert

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Posted 10 February 2016 - 07:20 AM

I don't think it's necessary to pay for an editor. I never do it. I trust my own editing. And I am going through the manuscript of my memoir with a fine-toothed comb. I still need to cut 20,000 words before I query again. Eventually I'll have to get off of the Internet and do it. 

 

There are a lot of ways that you can throw money at your writing. Some of them are worth it, some of them are not.

 

Instead of hiring an editor, which can cost in the thousands, I certainly can't afford it on SSDI, get beta readers and/or join a critique group. Then you get editing for free in exchange for you editing someone else's work, a much better arrangement.


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WRITING THE WALLS DOWN: A CONVERGENCE OF LGBTQ VOICES from Trans-Genre Press: http://trans-genre.n...the-walls-down/
 
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