The old saw still cuts quick and deep: Everybody needs an editor.
Your best odds of snagging an agent’s or editor’s attention is to have your work at the top of its form when you finally get your allotted half-minute of consideration.
You need an editor. Publishing houses are doing less and less editing, paying sloppy attention to refining your manuscript. A first-round copy-edit for misspellings and grammatical mistakes is often all a writer gets. Your book comes out and tanks, and you think maybe you had a better book than made it to press. But it’s too late.
My first agent had only two assistants, and got a hundred submissions a week. You don’t get much time at an agent’s or editor’s desk.
Poets & Writers magazine published a piece about a day in the life of a literary agency. Readers learned how an agent rejected eighteen manuscripts and set aside four manuscripts for further consideration, all in the space of fourteen minutes. Let’s see, twenty-two books that took maybe some fifty years of writing assessed in less than a quarter hour!
Kurt Vonnegut Jr said the most damning mistake a writer can make is playing games with language while forgetting to simply tell a good story. Assuming you’ve got a good story to tell and mostly know how to do that, finding a devoted editor will be the best money you’ll spend to advance your writing career.
Maybe I’m your editor. To begin, I need an email introduction from you. I’ll give you a call, and we’ll take it from there. If we team up, I’ll edit your manuscript for 7 cents a word.
My email address is firstname.lastname@example.org