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Nonfiction Editing

Editing means different things to different people.  For your scholarly trade or narrative nonfiction, which type of editing do you need?

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For nonfiction books, I provide three types of professional editing:

              Developmental Editing / Manuscript Evaluation


This is a deep dig into your manuscript's structure and content. Some people call this Developmental Editing; others, Manuscript Critique or Evaluation. It takes a big-picture view of your book to be sure you are sharing your wisdom in an effective manner.


In Developmental Editing, I thoroughly analyze the manuscript, noting in an editorial letter whether you address your chosen audience in a consistent and effective manner and whether your arguments build to a logical conclusion.


If reorganizing chapters or sections can improve flow and sense, I suggest where to move text and how to smooth it into a cohesive whole that supports your premise. I suggest how you might rewrite passages that wander off course or out of focus and note any gaps in logic, argument, or information that you can fill in with new text.


In comments in the manuscript, I point out problem areas to troubleshoot, where you can clarify meaning, eliminate jargon, include transitions, or insert a story or anecdote.


The editorial letter contains a step-by-step revision plan for you to implement. Together, the editorial letter and comments help you hone your central message so that you reach your readers and take them on an appealing learning journey with you.

Rate: Starting at 2.6 cents per word

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              Line Editing

Line Editing is also called Stylistic Editing. It occurs on a late, nearly final draft of your manuscript. (After Developmental Editing.) Choose Line Editing when you feel you are finished drafting your book and want to spruce up the style at the sentence and paragraph levels.


Line Editing smooths and invigorates the text, transforming it from rough draft material into evocative prose. In Line Editing, I edit each paragraph and sentence to clarify meaning and strengthen the flow, logic, coherence, specificity, and style of your writing. I sharpen word choice, tighten sentences to build intensity, apply the proper tone, and shape the words to connect best with readers.

This is a major stylistic manuscript cleanup and polish that also includes all the tasks of Copyediting (see below).


Choose Line Editing if you want your writing sharpened and the meaning and resonance of your words improved—and you don't mind significant markup and rewrites at the sentence level. All edits are tracked using Word's Track Changes feature so you can review each, accept or reject it, and respond to the revisions with your own ideas.

Rate: Starting at 4.0 cents per word

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In Copyediting, I focus on improving grammar, usage, spelling, and mechanics. Clarity, correctness, and consistency are foremost. I declutter sentences, invigorate verbs, do light fact checking, and implement the chosen publishing style. I edit citations, notes, bibliographies, and reference lists, too, to prepare your manuscript for publication.

Rate: Starting at 2 cents per word


NB: ​Often Line Editing and Copyediting take place in "two rounds": (1) initial editing followed by author review and revision, and (2) final editing to polish and clean up the tracked changes.

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"One thing I'd like to mention. I dislike copy editors. I have always experienced them as a necessary evil, with their pettiness and frustrating exactitude. I say this because Christina is a f---ing genius. She is unlike ANY copy editor I've ever worked with. She's truly gifted. As I went through her edits, I actually started to feel like it was a gift that she gave her attention to my book. I told my husband at least three times, ‘If i wasn't already married, I'd be asking Christina for her hand.’ Please let her know how deeply I appreciate her careful work and her profound consideration. I'm still in thrall of her skills."

—Inga Muscio, author, Cunt: A Declaration of Independence

Like authors, manuscripts are individual, so the necessary editorial work to transform a manuscript into a jewel and the amount of time to do it vary. I provide a more accurate price estimate after we discuss the project and I preview the manuscript.

Let me know when you are ready for
a sample edit
to see if my skills are a good fit for your
book project.


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Puzzled about which type of editing you need?

Let's discuss it!

"Wow! This is some of the best copyediting I have ever worked with. THANK YOU for your efforts on this."

—Kathleen S., nurse author

Working on fiction?

Be sure to check out how the Story Farmer can help.

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