The world of editing is more complex than just spelling and grammar. Webb Publishing seeks to assist authors in producing their best work possible. To this end, we prefer to charge an hourly rate and provide the level of editing required for each manuscript. There are four steps in the editing process.
- Substantive/structural editing: This is the process of clarifying and reorganizing the content and structure of a manuscript. Is there continuity in setting, plot and character? Is the structure of the manuscript clear and concise? Can the flow of the book be improved? We find that new authors tend to need a little support in the structure of their work.
- Stylistic editing: Clarifying meaning, eliminating jargon, and smoothing language. This is the step that assists an author with bringing their words to life and giving them a consistent writing style.
- Copy editing: Editing for grammar, spelling, and punctuation; checking facts; monitoring for internal consistencies of presentation; notifying design and production staff of any unusual requirements.
- Proofreading: This is a term that refers specifically to reviewing the printed proof of a book. Proofreading is the very last step and isn’t done via computer. Once the copy editing is done, and each person involved in the project feels there is nothing left to catch, the file is sent to the printer and a proof is prepared on paper. The review of THIS hard-copy printed document is known as proofreading. We strongly recommend this step as the author is responsible for the cost of printing once they have approved the proof. Typically we review a print proof with a red pen in hand, and make very visible marks on all of the picky little details that the human eye just does not catch on a computer screen.
Webb Publishing prefers to be consistent in our editing rather than perfectionist, allowing an author to choose a certain spelling of a word or idiosyncrasy of grammar rather than going 100% by the book. We believe in keeping the voice of the author rather than adhering to a specific ‘style guide’ (a style guide is a document that identifies specific grammar and punctuation rules for a publishing organization – ie: newspapers, universities, etc).
The best way for us to estimate an editing budget is to send us a sample chapter or two. We will review the document and give you a rough idea of what we feel the manuscript needs. All quotes are estimates only, and they are developed using an anticipated editing rate. A reasonably well written manuscript may be edited at the rate of 10-12 pages per hour. We will sometimes prepare a sample edit for discussion. The client is billed for actual time spent on the project.
We accept MS Word files, PDFs, WordPerfect files, rich text files, printed manuscripts and handwritten notes! It is best to keep your documents as simple as possible – please do not put in extra spaces or use tabs to indent paragraphs or quotes. You will save time and money if you send a completely basic file to us as we must ‘strip’ your computer file of all of its formatting before we design the book’s layout.