Helping you make your book better
I can assess how your book is written and structured, and ensure it is grammatically sound, and free of mistakes. I can test it for readability and impact, putting your work through its paces, to ensure it is lean and focussed, making sure that every word you’ve written has earned its place.
In short, I will help make your book ready for publication. After editing, your book will tell your story, and express your ideas, as powerfully as possible, making for a much better read.
Editing support at all stages of writing a book
In the early stages of writing
Getting an objective appraisal of your manuscript, while it’s still in development will help you avoid problems that would throw your writing off course later, and give you the best chance of getting published.
If you’ve already finished your manuscript
I’m not just here to “kill your darlings,” with my structural edits and line edits, I’m here to help you fall in love with your manuscript all over again.
If your book has already been rejected by agents or publishers
I can take a look at your manuscript, and suggest elements we can revise or refine. It isn’t easy taking your book apart and putting it back together again, but if the germ of the idea is good, and your ideas are sound, it’s worth it to give your book another chance.
People who read early manuscripts and then the final version have said how much better the final version was. I have humbly and graciously credited you for that evolution!Richard Martin, author of This Too Will Pass
Editing support for author agents and publishers
Looking for an experienced editor you can rely on to work with your author calmly, tactfully, and to agreed timescales?
My experience as Senior Editor and later, Editorial Director, has seen me work closely with authors, agents and publishers including Routledge, Trigger, and Sharpe Books.
New and experienced authors find me very easy to work with, even when I have to undertake extensive revisions on their manuscripts!
I can also write your author’s book from start to finish if required.
Types of editing available
Because every book brings its own challenges, and every author’s needs are uniquely different, editing is a flexible business. What kind of edit do you need?
An editorial assessment report gives you an objective overview of your manuscript, highlighting any potential issues, repeated mistakes, and structural issues, and making suitable recommendations for the work that needs to be done.
It identifies the good things too – highlighting any particularly strong sections, and elements that could be repeated or expanded upon.
The report will give you the guidance you need to make the changes yourself.
Structural or Substantive Edit
This is a big picture edit, and tackles the sorts of questions a publisher would ask: Does this book work in its current form? Does it make sense? Do the component parts fit together logically? Are there any pacing issues?
A structural edit will identify and correct these issues, and can potentially reimagine your book. Many of the books I’ve worked on have benefitted from a reduced wordcount – cutting manuscripts back by anywhere between 20 to 50% of the original length is typical.
Line Edit or Copy Edit
A line edit gives you the reassurance of knowing your book is publication ready.
While it doesn’t go as deep as a structural edit, a line edit really is a line-by-line examination of your manuscript focusing on readability. I will correct any mistakes in spelling, grammar, and punctuation. I’ll review your use of language, and revise words, sentences and paragraphs for readability, flow, and impact.
Let’s get your book edited and ready for publishing
In short, I will help make your book fit for publication. After editing, your book will tell your story, and express your ideas, as powerfully as possible.
Want to work on improving your own editing skills? Perhaps mentoring could help with that.
Can you approach publishers for me?
Once I’ve finished work on your book, we can certainly talk about sending the manuscript for a publisher’s consideration if we both think there is a worthwhile chance of attracting their interest.
Depending on the book, I might be able to make specific recommendations for publishers you can reach out to. In other cases, I might suggest you speak to an agent who can do the hard work of promoting your work for you.
Very often, my best recommendation is self-publishing.
How intensive will the edit be? Will I still recognise my book afterwards?
I’m here to help you make your story absolutely coherent and utterly compelling on the page, so I’ll recommend a level of editing to fit.
It may well be that your book needs little-to-no-work, but if I think your manuscript will benefit from a more extensive edit, I’ll tell you what I’m planning, and talk through what impact that will have.
In every case, I’ll discuss my plans with you before I make a single change.
Do you offer proofreading?
I will carry out a thorough spelling and grammar check as part of a line edit / copy edit on a book that you have written.
However, if you engage me to ghostwrite a book for you, or to conduct a very significant edit on a book, then I will recommend that we engage a proofreader to carry out an objective proofread.
Do you abridge content?
Yes, I’m happy to abridge content if your work (or your author’s work) is going to be serialised.
How much does editing cost?
I charge for editing jobs in line with *pricing recommendations outlined by the Chartered Institute of Editing and Proofreading.
Does my book need editing?
I can’t think of any manuscript that hasn’t benefitted from editing. Here’s what an edit can do for your book:
- It will make it a tighter, more focussed manuscript.
- It will help you identify any parts of the book that don’t quite work, specifically, any issues with the sequence and flow of the narrative.
- It will eliminate any grammatical errors, weed out any inconsistencies, and make the manuscript easy to read.
There’s more to it than that though.
Many writers appreciate the benefit of having a second opinion on what they’ve written. When you’ve spent months or even years working on your manuscript, it can be easy to forget that your book is going to be read by other people who don’t look at the world through your eyes. Your editor will objectively appraise your book, and make suggestions for improvements that will make it more accessible to your audience.
Is editing help available before the book is finished?
One of the big risks to any writing project is disillusionment brought about by not quite feeling like the work is going the way you want. Getting some objective input at an earlier stage of writing is a great way to help keep you on track, and make working on your manuscript much easier.
I can identify any elements of your story that might benefit from a fresh approach. There may be parts of your narrative that need more (or less) detail. Perhaps the way the book is structured can be changed to make it more compelling. Or maybe a change of emphasis can give you a whole new insight into how to make the book better.
I have very specific requirements for the kind of edit I want… is that okay?
My natural instinct when I edit a manuscript is to do everything! I’ll consider the sequencing and flow of the story, and ask whether the manuscript tells its story in the most efficient and effective way. I’ll consider the words you’ve used, check the grammar, and ensure sentences are easy to read. I’ll be on the lookout for inconsistencies and errors. In short, I’ll review the book just as an objective reader would, and I’ll ask you all the questions they would ask.
All that being said, you may very well want a minimal edit. Perhaps you just only want a structural edit. I can do that. Or maybe you want me to ensure that the manuscript is grammatically sound, without letting me loose on anything else. No problem. You may even want me to appraise your work and suggest improvements you can make yourself. Happy to do that too.
My book has been rejected by agents or publishers, can you help?
It isn’t easy taking your book apart and putting it back together again, but if the germ of the idea is good, and your ideas are sound, it’s worth it to give your book another chance.
I can take a look at your manuscript, and suggest elements we can revise or refine. Perhaps there are some elements of the book that can be expanded to bring the story into line with a publisher’s requirements.
It may be that your book is well written, but just doesn’t fit the remit of the publishers you have approached. If I can suggest alternative publishers for you to try, I will. Or else, we could talk about self-publishing.
Do you outsource your work?
No. I only outsource non-editorial services related to the design, print, and production of your book, using a trusted partner that I have worked with for many years.
Everything else is handled exclusively by me and I'll be your only point of contact from first meeting through to sign off so you'll have direct contact with me at every stage of the process.
What experience and qualifications do you have?
Before setting up Lomas Editorial, I worked as a Senior Editor, overseeing, ghosting, and editing more than thirty non-fiction and narrative non-fiction books and memoirs for publishers including Routledge, Trigger, and Sharpe Books.
I then progressed to Editorial Director, with responsibility for commissioning books, and working closely with authors and agents.
Since then I've ghostwritten several self-published titles.
I’m also a member of the Society of Authors, the Chartered Institute of Editors and Proofreaders, Byte The Book, and the UK Speechwriter's Guild.