MY DEVELOPMENTAL SERVICES
Is your manuscript ready for publication? Assessing the publication readiness of your own writing is difficult. The magnitude of the process obstructs objectivity. Words and images accumulate over time, research multiplies, characters refuse to stick to the outline, and after several drafts, you suspect you may have lost touch with your original intentions. Or is it…could it be…brilliant? If only you could run the whole manuscript past someone knowledgeable…
That's where writing-partner.com can help. Honest, detached, and comprehensive feedback from an experienced developmental editor will give you the feedback and guidance you need.
When I sit down with a book I demand an entertaining and meaningful read, don’t you? As your writing partner, I will not let you stop short of achieving that goal. I have great passion for what I do. Those who know me would tell you that I have applied my all to everything I have done in life and I will bring that experience and vitality to your manuscript. I urge the writers I work with to reach for nothing less than excellence. I love contributing to a winning team, and everyone wins when they are willing to do their very best!
The success of our partnership will depend greatly on the time you've devoted to learning the craft and your openness to critique.
I am not a perfect fit for every manuscript. Why? Subjectivity reigns at every level of this industry; learning to target your work effectively begins in the writing and continues in choosing an editor. My fiction interests range from literary to mainstream and middle-grade through adult in most character-driven genres; in nonfiction, memoir and narrative nonfiction. I have particular expertise with novels based on true events and novels written by former journalists, whose works face specific challenges.
This customized, written critique will identify your project's strengths and missed opportunities through the evaluation of its underpinnings and characterizations. I'll let you know whether your major story elements are working for you and then suggest specific modifications or brainstorm alternate solutions. For what isn't working, I will either provide or point you toward craft resources that can shore it up. While stopping short of verifying your research, I'll comment on anything that I’m having trouble “buying.” Would some spots benefit from increased tension, a modification in pace, or higher stakes? I'll tell you. Is there potential for your themes and images to work harder for you? I’ll tell you that, too.
For fiction and memoir projects, I will determine whether your plot is applying the pressure needed to create believable inner change in your protagonist. For nonfiction, I will comment on voice, focus, the logical presentation of information, and readability.
You will find feedback on your manuscript pages but not line edits—since some of the pages you submit might not end up in your final project anyway, let's save that level of polish until your story is in great shape. I will, however, include a list of issues that a line edit would address. Since a developmental edit can often feel overwhelming, I'll also include a plan for attacking the suggested revisions.
The base fee for this service is 4 cents per word, which may be adjusted upward depending on the demands of the specific project (plus PA sales tax, if applicable). I will do a test edit of 1,000 words from the middle of the manuscript to see if we're a good fit and to provide a firm quote, but because of the comprehensive nature of my work, I must charge $200 for this. If you choose to work further with me, that sum will serve as the non-refundable $200 down payment needed for clients to hold their place in my queue. All work must be pre-paid before delivery and is non-refundable.
After receiving your evaluation you may request a follow-up call of up to one hour to discuss the project for no additional charge. I ask that you wait one week to allow additional reflection to contribute to your perspective.
The Craft Polish
For stories that are on the home stretch*, this service is for clients ready to shape the story for submission to agents, publishers, or to ready it for self-publication. This next step is a line edit that will examine how each and every word contributes to the efficacy of your story. From scene choice to word choice to every space and punctuation mark, I'll make sure your writing serves your story and represents you well. The pages will be marked up with comments on writing mechanics, setting, point of view, dialogue, and any continuity issues.
*How do you know if your project is on the home stretch?
1. You qualify for this service if you have already received a structural edit from me and have completed the action pan for your developmental edit. Your Craft Polish will also include comments on whether the changes you made are working for you, and I'll identify any new problems that may have arisen.
2. If you have not received a developmental edit from me, I'll need to see sample of your work that includes a short pitch paragraph, a synopsis, and the first five pages of your novel to make my best guess as to whether you're ready. Even if I think the answer is yes, if at any point while reading your manuscript I determine that you need a full structural edit instead, I'll contact you about switching to that service.
The base fee for this service is 3.5 cents per word, which may be adjusted upward depending on the demands of the specific project (plus PA sales tax, if applicable). A non-refundable down payment of $200 holds your place in my queue. If you qualify through #2, above, that fee will also cover your test edit of 1,000 words from the middle of the manuscript to see if we're a good fit and to provide a firm quote, but because of the comprehensive nature of my work, I must charge $200 for this. If you choose to work further with me, that sum will serve as the non-refundable $200 down payment needed for clients to hold their place in my queue. All work must be pre-paid before delivery and is non-refundable.
The "I'm All In" Package
When I can, I love to support writers who are ready and willing to go the distance for their work. If you have an amazing work ethic, want all the help you can get, and want to reap the added motivation of having skin in the game, you can prepay both the Structural Edit and the Craft Polish for a base price of 7 cents per word—a half-cent per word savings. Big deal, you say? Sure is—when you have 85,000 words or more, that extra half-cent per word can add up to hundreds of dollars! But the clock will be ticking—you must book the Craft Polish within 12 months of receiving your Structural Edit.
To qualify for this service, I will do a test edit of 1,000 words from the middle of the manuscript to see if we're a good fit and to provide a firm quote. Because of the comprehensive nature of my work, I must charge $200 for this. If you choose to book a service, that sum will serve as the non-refundable $200 down payment required of clients to hold their place in my queue. All work must be pre-paid before delivery and is non-refundable.
Your Novel Year
Whether you are writing your first book or your third, if you are early in its journey—either drafting or just beginning a second draft—this is the program for you! This small-group mentorship program for novelists, now fully online via live video conference, begins anew each January.
Barbara, a 2018 participant who is now published, wrote: “Kathryn makes every moment count, keeps the energy humming, encourages without coddling, and really knows her stuff. She's always well-prepared, yet eager to seize the 'teachable moments' that are often where the best learning occurs. Her handouts are concise and practical, she's accessible and responsive between sessions, and her feedback is deftly aimed at pushing us toward becoming better and better writers. An outstanding experience!"
The application deadline is December 20. To read more about it, check out my Your Novel Year page.
Submission Package Review
If you are getting ready to submit your work to agents and editors—or are receiving a lackluster reaction to your queries—your submission may contain deal-breaking issues you can't detect. Writing-Partner's Submission Package Review will help you put your best foot forward. I will review and edit your query letter, synopsis, and the first ten pages of your manuscript—and let's face it, that's about all the chance you'll get to make an impression with an agent or editor (and if you think that's rough, I make purchasing decisions at the bookstore based on only the first paragraph!). Only $300, this service can be eye-opening and beneficial.
Writing Partner Workshops/Conference Speaker
Reserve a workshop or lecture for your writer’s group, school, or conference. Through examples from published works, writing exercises, or discussion of work submitted in advance, I will lead a workshop discussion that will help participants improve their skills and return to their work with renewed vigor. E-mail me to discuss availability; prices negotiable. Workshops can be tailored to your needs; click here for a list of sample workshops.
Not ready to pay for editing services? Read this: Can I Get a Manuscript Evaluation for Free?
Ready to proceed? Let's do this!
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"Kathryn is an editor par excellence. She is thorough and precise. I appreciated her straightforward and honest approach to my story content. She was clear on the strengths of my work and what needed to be rethought, refined or recycled. Her enthusiasm for my novel was infectious, and spurred me on to complete the final much faster than I would have on my own. I would recommend her to any aspiring novelist without hesitation."
—JF Althouse, author of Second Sight and Second Birth
"Kathryn’s feedback regarding my young adult novel went far beyond my expectations. Not only did she provide me with an honest, thorough overview of the large areas of need in my manuscript, but she also provided me with line edits that showed she was invested in my story. After implementing the suggested changes, I utilized the one-hour follow up phone consultation. She helped me brainstorm further character development ideas, and even after hanging up, was kind enough to send a detailed e-mail with further suggestions. Kathryn’s devotion to her clients’ writing is her finest asset. She wants authors to succeed, and I am convinced her suggestions will help me to do so."
—Scott Heydt. author of O.Y.L. and Mice Don't Taste Like Chicken
For more testimonials connect with me on LinkedIn!
Kathryn Craft author & developmental editor