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Wednesday, August 20, 2008

When should you hire a freelance editor? Part one

Let’s face it, writing is not for wusses. It involves at least a small financial investment in books, workshops, conferences, equipment, office supplies.

Because of that, I have several low-cost services in my Story Sensei service, like the Synopsis critique, Synopsis writing worksheet and Screening critique.

But even these services cost money. How do you know at which point you need to hire a freelance editor, whether it’s me or someone else?

Are you in a critique group or do you have critique partners?

If the answer is no, then you are not yet ready to hire a freelance editor.

Critique groups/partners help you grow from a beginning writer to a strong intermediate one. They can help you understand basic things like point of view, showing versus telling, passive verbs, -ly adverbs, proper punctuation/grammar, etc.

For example, if you are a beginning writer and you hire me for a manuscript critique, I will point out all the above in your manuscript for you, but I will be so busy pointing those things out that I won’t be able to comment on deeper things like writing with more emotional intensity, sentence structure variation, deep point of view, scene structure, polishing your writer’s voice, and effective story pacing.

You want the most bang for your buck, right? If your writing is already strong thanks to a critique group, then I can spend time during your critique pointing out things that will take you to that next level of writing.

Click here for part two

2 comments:

  1. Excellent points, Camy. As a critiquer or even a contest judge, I have a really hard time looking past obvious technical and grammatical errors to be of any help with deeper characterization and plotting issues. Learning to write well happens in stages--although no doubt there are a few "naturals" out there who instinctively get plot and character right but struggle with grammar and style.

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  2. Thanks, Myra! You're absolutely right--writing really does come in "stages."
    Camy

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