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  • Do You Need a Book Editor?

    An open book
    Many writers believe the only people who need book editors are those who don’t know how to write, but nothing could be further from the truth. It doesn’t matter if you’re a debut nonfiction indie writer or Stephen King—every writer can benefit from working with a professional book editor.

    But how do you know when you’re ready?

    1. You feel like you’re done.

    You wrote the first draft. Then you reread your work and made changes to anything that didn’t seem right. Then you read and revised again. When you finally feel like you’re done, that’s the perfect time to enlist the help of a book editor.

    Why? Because there’s probably quite a bit of work left to do, but the more you work on something, the harder it becomes to see the problems. Once you’ve taken your book as far as you can on your own, find an editor to raise it to new heights.

    2. You know your work has problems—but you don’t know how to fix them.

    There are two kinds of writer’s blocks. The first is where you can’t put words down on paper. It’s hard to get started, let alone finish. The second kind of writer’s block occurs when you know something isn’t working, but you can’t quite figure out what it is or how to fix it.

    This is exactly the kind of thing book editors are paid to do. It may not be fun having someone point out all the “bad” parts of your book, but it sure can be instructive. If you’re willing to put in the hard work to fix the issues an editor points out, the result will be a much stronger book.

    3. You want a final polish before you send your work out.

    If you’ve rewritten and rewritten until your book shines and you’re itching to send it out, it’s time for a book editor. Chances are that a skilled editor will point out something you don’t even know needs to be fixed. Either way, your book will benefit hugely from having a professional look it over to ensure it’s error free and ready to wow critics and readers or the gatekeepers at agencies and publishing houses.

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    4. Agents and publishers are lukewarm.

    Maybe you decided against a book editor before sending your work around, and you’ve even had some agents and publishers read it, but they’re always lukewarm without telling you why.

    If you work with an experienced book editor, he or she will be able to recommend specific improvements in addition to telling you what isn’t working about your manuscript. Armed with this knowledge, you can dive back in and make your book as good as it can possibly be.

    5. You’ve written a book and want to publish.

    Ultimately, deciding whether you need a book editor is simple: You need one if you’ve written a book and want to publish it. While some writers manage to sell their work without using an editor, it doesn’t happen as often as you’d think—and publishers put everything they buy through multiple rounds of edits.

    In other words, if you want your book to be as good as it possibly can be, you want a professional editor to look at it.

    Ready for a comprehensive edit of your manuscript? Work with a qualified book editor at

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