Tuesday, April 23, 2013

The Importance of an Editor

When I began writing I wanted to be my own editor. Now I am not so naive. A Mage's Power has received many reviews that said the spelling and/or grammar was horrible. They came to both the amazon listing and this very blog.  Even the people that liked the book and left positive reviews still said the book needed substantial editing. For context, I made three passes through the manuscript after I thought I found all the errors from the previous seven or so passes.

Acknowledging defeat I contacted an editing service and was struck a further blow to my editing ego. They said the book needed more than a 'light proofing' and that they had fixed 'thousands' of errors in the first hundred pages. They were not exaggerating; there really were thousands of errors because the same sort of errors were repeated over and over again.

You see I was still trying to deny that I needed an editor. I told myself that it was just a few errors here and there that, over 400 kindle pages, added up, and that all I needed was a different set of eyes. When I looked over the marked up manuscript that came back, I realized that was far from true. I'm happy to say to say it was worth it. Ever since then the reviews that complained of grammar and/or spelling have disappeared.

In case you're interested, that service is Hercules Editing and Consulting and I'm about to use their services again for other things (Table of Contents, advertising, etc) and found a package that included editing. For all you readers out there, this means there will be another free period in the near future.


  1. How long did it take to get your stuff back from Hercules?

    1. It depends on how much work needs to be done. A Mage's Power (double spaced, 12 font, Times New Roman) was over 400 pages long and needed a lot of work. One pass through for proof reading took about one month. Hypothetically speaking, if a book was shorter and needed less work then it would be returned sooner.

  2. Glad you got some help in the editing department. No matter how many errors I find in my own work, I know I'll find more on the next read through. It definetly pays to have a second pair (preferably a professional set) of eyes working for you.