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Getting quotes from editors

Some writers are reluctant to contact editors who don’t post a fee schedule.

At one time my website included a method for calculating a base fee for my services. Even though a fee RANGE (cents per word) was stated, persons contacting me calculated their fee at the lowest rate and assumed that’s what I was going to charge. So then I would have to tell them I needed a sample of their manuscript to determine the fee, and nearly always after reviewing their samples my fees weren’t at the lowest rate.

If prospective clients think they’re going to pay one fee and find out it’s higher, they may feel cheated before we even agree to work together. That’s a lousy way to start out.

Please don’t be shy about contacting editors if you’re an introvert or shy. Many, maybe most, editors are introverts also. They should be happy to be contacted about a possible job. If they aren’t, then strike them off your list.

I hope you have a list. Having other editors in mind may ease your reluctance to contact them about your book. Contact them all! (But I don’t suggest a mass mailing. 🙂 )

You don’t need to use the first editor you contact. We don’t expect to get every job we quote. Providing quotes comes with the territory. If you get multiple quotes and sample edits, you can make a better decision about the quality of editing and who you’d like to work with. If the editor you select gets hit by a bus (knock on wood), then you already have backups in mind.

Some editors will charge a fee for a sample edit. That’s perfectly legitimate and shouldn’t make you reject an editor.

About Sandra K. Williams

Sandra K. Williams loves books, both printed and digital. Since 1996 she has worked with authors and independent publishers, editing and designing books for print. Since 1999 she has built easy-to-use, accessible websites, and she uses her HTML and CSS skills to design reader-friendly e-books.

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