As a book marketing, book editing and influencer marketing division of a publishing house, we are often tasked with, well, book editing. Duh!
And well, sometimes, we feel we could give our local vegetable vendors a tough competition. Because the amount of bargaining that goes in here is unbelievable. U-N-B-E-L-I-E-V-A-B-L-E.
And while we do understand you authors’ plight about shelling out a tremendous amount on simply book editing, have you ever considered an editor’s plight? Or why book editing is actually so damn expensive?
Well, I get it. You believe that it’s a whiff, jiffy kind of a task, but believe me it’s not. I’ve been the editor-in-chief of a magazine that I co-ran. I have edited manuscripts and even dissertation thesis. These things are intense. They take time.
So here, let me break it down for you in three simple points to explain why, just why book editing costs a bomb and why you should support editors too any pay them a decent amount sans of bargaining.
If you were say getting married, would you let an amateur baker with no experience handle your wedding cake, just because it was cheaper? I mean sure, it could possibly turn out well, but is it worth taking the risk? At all? The same goes with book editing. Sure, you will find editors willing to do it at 20-30p/word, but are you a 100% sure they will do a good job? The most experienced ones cost a bomb (so to say) but they do a hell of a job! And ensure the result is impeccable.
Time consuming AF
A book editor lives, eats and breathes your manuscript. They got no other time to think or work. They go on and on, reading and re-reading your manuscript to make sure that comma fits in well, to make sure that your sentence reads well. It isn’t simple grammar check or proof reading – a book editor goes borderline neurotic trying to do full justice to your manuscript and hand your baby back to you in a much better package. It’s not just reading – it’s reading, re-reading and writing too. Besides grammar checks. Have you seen a grammar nazi go batshit crazy on the Internet? Imagine that x 100000 and voila! You have yourself a book editor
It’s more than just grammar check
Re-iterating the statement made in the previous point, editing isn’t just your basic grammar check (unless, of course you have simply gone for a proofreading package). Editing is a back-breaking, neck crunching activity that involves an editor staring at the screen for hours together to piece together sometimes missing pieces of the puzzle, to fill in the gaps, to better your manuscript and hand you a concrete piece of work for years to come. Authors, do remember this – your book is almost as much an editor’s as yours. Editors invest a lot into your manuscript – mentally and emotionally too so that they can fully do justice to every word you have written (and they may have deleted…oops)
Editing is far often a very understated job and service. The next time you are hiring an editor or planning to do so, or know any friends, family members, acquaintances, co-workers, colleagues or enemies (okay “frenemies”) wanting to publish a manuscript, send them this article and get them to read it twice, then another four times. And please please please, for the love of God (or Satan, or whoever you worship, we don’t judge) do not sit and bargain for a reduction of price. If that kind of an activity kicks you, maybe take a trip to Bangkok and haggle the life out with the street vendors there!
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HEAD- BRANDING & EDITING
BETTER BOOKS ( A HALF BAKED BEANS INITIATIVE)