Types Of Editing

Basic Copyediting/Light Editing

Experienced writers use this type of editing to protect themselves from overlooked errors.

The editor
• corrects grammar and punctuation.
• corrects inconsistencies in the text.
• brings the attention of the author to confusing passages and basic writing errors such as overuse of adverbs, sentence construction, etc.

Line Editing/Heavy Editing

This type of editing is often selected by beginning writers, writers who need a little extra help, and second language writers.

The editor
• corrects grammar and punctuation.
• corrects inconsistencies in the text.
• looks at the text line by line and paragraph by paragraph to ensure smoothness, clarity, and flow.
• Assist with rewriting or rewording sections while maintaining the voice of the author.
• makes suggestions for improving content.
• checks references.
• checks style format required by the publisher. I do APA format only.
• in the case of second language authors, revises unusual wording and sentence structure to follow Standard English conventions.

Developmental or Substantive Editing

For authors who need considerable assistance. Perhaps your teacher has made an assignment and you don’t know where to begin or your boss needs a set of instructions for a new procedure and gave the job to you. Maybe you would like to write your memoirs and have never written anything before. Beginning writers or writers having trouble with a project would benefit from this type of editing.

The editor
• works with the author from the beginning of the project.
• examines whether the flow of the work makes sense.
• determines where is more explanation or content needed.
• offers specific, in-depth suggestions for improving the work.


While very similar to copyediting, this is the last step to publication. It’s your last chance to get it right. Major editing issues must be taken care of prior to this final step. Substantive changes in proofs can cost the publisher money—which may be passed on to the author! Ideally, the editor will find no errors.

The editor
• checks page proofs (exact copies of pages as they will appear in your book).
• corrects any remaining errors in the text.
• checks the visual flow of the document.


Many books require an index, including: autobiographies, biographies, cookbooks, and nearly every academic book or self-help book. The quality of an index can make or break the success of a book.

The Indexer

  • Carefully reads your book after it has been designed and pages have numbered.
  • Identifies words and concepts that should be included in the index.
  • Adds page numbers to all entries.

Prose and Polish Editing:  Editorial Rate Guidelines

Rates below are estimates and may vary depending on the nature of the work, time requirements, degree of expertise required, and any special needs of the assignment such as very quick turnarounds.

A manuscript page or any part of a page is set at the industry standard of 250 words (double-spaced, 12 point New Times Roman font, 1-inch or default margins).


Type of work



Minimum price per page and part of a page


Turn-around time (estimated)

Faster delivery may add to cost.

Basic copyediting/

Light editing



$2.50 – $4.00


(Minimum $60)

Turn-around time for 1-10 pages is 5-7 days.


Author/Editor will agree on timeline for longer papers and special projects.




Billing and payment is by PayPal.

Line editing or heavy copyediting



$4.00 – $5.00


(Minimum $60)

Developmental or substantive editing



$5.00 – $10.00


(Minimum $60)




$2.00 per page


(Minimum $60)

Other forms of editing (business letters, queries, advertising, abstracts, conference proposals, etc.) Short projects (under 20,000 words) are charged by the hour ($30 to $60/hour) with a 2-hour minimum.


Contact editor to discuss project details and receive estimate.


Prose and Polish Editing: Indexing Rate Guidelines

Prose and Polish Editors do only one kind of index—a comprehensive one. Then we work with the author to make sure every entry is accurate and appropriate.

Rates range from $30 to $40 an hour. A firm price will be provided after seeing a sample chapter from your book and learning the number of words in your text.

Bonus: Calls the author’s attention to possible errors found in the text as the read-through is done.