When you need help and advice for your fiction writing, what you don’t want is…
- An impersonal, one-size-fits-all service where the fiction editors or coaches may not have any actual publishing experience in fiction.
- Bad advice or feedback that is so harsh that it crushes your creative ambition.
- Feedback that is superficial or falsely glowing. If you wanted your ego pumped, you’d ask your mom to read your manuscript, right?
- Someone who will rewrite your book for you, or who will run over your own creative independence in a rush to recreate your story the way they want it.
You want someone who will respect your voice, honor your creativity, and see the unique potential embedded in your work.
What you want is a fiction editing expert, someone who understands that we creative types need honesty as well as encouragement—and who will do their best to give you both. You want editing and coaching programs designed to meet your personal needs, while still providing structure and clear direction.
This is what the fiction editors and writing coaches at the Fiction Fix-It Shop can provide. The results speak for themselves:
"Meredith had the patience and requisite skills to teach this first time author the fundamentals of creative writing. I’m indebted to her for all I’ve learned, and hope to learn. She’s fast, articulate, and very knowledgeable, and cites great references."
–Jack Hutchinson, writer
Below are our basic fiction editing and writing coaching programs, along with their rates. Some fiction editors and fiction coaches prefer not to post their rates on their sites. We post ours because we understand what life on a budget is like, and we don’t want you to have any surprises. Our rates do change infrequently, and though we try to keep the website updated, you will still need to confirm the current rates with our administrative assistant, Carolyn, when you contact us.
When looking at the cost, however, keep in mind that you are investing in a business. You’re a “fiction entrepreneur.” Any business venture requires an investment of time, energy, and finances to be successful—even becoming a published novelist. You can rest assured that you will be receiving the very best assistance from published novelists for your investment. The return on that could be priceless.
Traditional Freelance Fiction Editing Services
This is freelance fiction editing at its finest! Whether you are a published author who wants to work with a freelance fiction editor in addition to your in-house editorial team, or you are an indie author seeking to self-publish an e-book, or you are an aspiring writer who wants to improve your craft, we have services to fit your needs.
We’ve spoken with many fiction writers to find out what they want in a fiction editor, and what they’ve all said is they want honesty, encouragement, respect and thorough, knowledgeable feedback.
We listened. With our CRAFTS fiction editing system, you receive the following:
- Detailed feedback in your manuscript itself—helping you pinpoint down to the line or the word what is and is not working in your manuscript in a way that preserves your writing voice and your vision for your work.
- Thorough analysis of character, plot, and writing technique at the end of the manuscript—giving you a broad, yet deep, overview of the strengths and weaknesses of your manuscript, all the while acknowledging your vision and the special talent you bring to your story.
- For those planning to self-publish--thorough substantive and line editing as well as copy-editing and proofreading so your e-book is the highest quality possible.
- Post-Edit Recovery Guide—a tongue-in-cheek but practical plan for responding to your critique or edit and how to approach the revision process—so you won’t waste valuable time feeling discouraged, overwhelmed or lost when you get your feedback.
All this from a published novelist skilled in providing helpful, knowledgeable editing. The end benefit to you? CRAFTS is your tool to Clarify, Refine, And Focus The Story to make it all you dreamed it could be.
Great, right? But we weren’t satisfied. We wanted to make a way for your edits and critiques to be even more helpful to you, to squeeze every drop of experience from your fiction editor—so that your manuscript can reach its fullest potential.
So we created ShopTalk, a recorded phone consultation that comes standard with all our editing services except copy editing. With ShopTalk, you get to speak directly to your fiction editor over the phone and receive the conversation in a file you can listen to as many times as you want. Wondering what your fiction editor meant in a certain comment? Now you can ask. Stuck trying to figure out how to implement the revisions she suggested? How about some brainstorming with the fiction expert? Your ShopTalk session helps make your edits and critiques even more useful by giving you a chance to discuss them with the fiction editor directly.
Here are the different ways you can use CRAFTS and ShopTalk for your fiction editing needs. Click on the heading to see a detailed checklist of what each service includes:
Initial Critique: A thorough CRAFTS critique of the first 3,000 words of your fiction manuscript. Covers writing technique, characters, scene structure, dialogue, narration, point of view, and voice. This is a required first step for our other editing services. It gives you and your editor a chance to try each other out and a chance for your editor to make recommendations about what services would be most helpful for your manuscript.
Critique on first 3,000 words of manuscript plus 15 minute ShopTalk: $100
(This is also a good option if you need to polish up sample chapters for a contest or a book proposal.)
Chapter Critique: Similar to the Initial Critique. For those who want to get feedback a little at a time or who want to make revisions after their Initial Critique and resubmit their work to their editor.
Critique on one chapter (up to 4,000 words), plus 15 minute ShopTalk: $125 (please do not submit more than one chapter at a time or more than 4,000 words)
Book Proposal Critique: This critique includes all the features of the CRAFTS edit from the Initial Critique for your first three chapters plus feedback on your book proposal. The book proposal includes feedback on your query/cover letter, market analysis, synopsis, author bio, and book overview or description. We don’t proofread your proposal or write it for you, but we can direct you to an excellent guide on how to write your own proposals.
Review of fiction book proposal and 3 sample chapters, plus 30 minute ShopTalk: varies according to manuscript length and amount of work needed. $500 average.
Substantive Editing: This is an in-depth analysis of each major character, plot, theme, writing style, and step-by-step plan for revisions. It may include comments throughout the manuscript, and is equivalent to the first round of editing you receive from an editor at a publishing house. We always include helpful resources and suggestions where we can. The final analysis is normally 10-20 pages, single spaced. Highly recommended for those planning to self-publish, and required for anyone who wants to have a line edit through FFS.
Substantive editing plus TWO 30 minute ShopTalk sessions: varies according to manuscript length and amount of work needed. Average for 80,000 word manuscript is $1500.
Line Editing: This CRAFTS edit focuses on the chapter, scene, paragraph, and line levels of your manuscript. It may include comments about scene structure, show-don't-tell, dialogue, point of view, and ways to make your writing style clearer and more compelling. Our line edit service is equivalent to what you would receive in a second round of edits from a publisher, and will include editorial comments as well as actual wording changes in the manuscript (with author's ability to approve or reject each change through Track Changes.) An essential part of preparing a manuscript to be self-published. You must work with FFS on a substantive edit of the manuscript in order to qualify for a full line edit.
Line Editing plus TWO 30 minute ShopTalk sessions: varies according to manuscript length and amount of work needed. Average for 80,000 word manuscript is $3000.
Copy Editing/Proofreading: Covers spelling, grammar, formatting, typos, continuity errors, and other small problems. Because copy editing requires fundamentally different skills from our other types of editing, we work with experienced copy editors instead of published novelists for this service. Changes are made using Track Changes in Word so that you can easily review each change and accept it or reject it. Some comments or questions may be noted, but no detailed feedback or analysis is given.
Copy Editing/Proofreading: varies by manuscript length and amount of work needed. $1500 average for an 80,000 word manuscript.
For more information on what fiction editing is all about, see the “Why Freelance Fiction Editing?” series on the Fiction Workbench Blog.
To learn more about the difference between substantive editing and copy editing and which you should choose, see “Types of Fiction Editing" on the Fiction Workbench Blog. Or check out the detailed checklists for each service by clicking on their headings above.
Want to know how we’ve helped other fiction writers and published novelists? Check out our Happy Clients.
Ready to get started? Fill out our Contact form and our fabulous assistant, Carolyn, will help you.
Sometimes, what you really need to reach your fiction writing goals is some one-on-one guidance and direction from a fellow professional. Maybe you’ve been wishing you had an experienced novelist to partner with you and give you encouragement and advice—one writing colleague to another.
That’s what coaching is for. It’s your chance to have a published fiction writer all to yourself and ask those questions you’ve been needing to ask, talk out all your thorniest issues relating to writing fiction. When you work with a writing coach from the Fiction Fix-It Shop, you know you are partnering with an expert in the craft of fiction as well as in the fiction publishing industry.
Coaching is different from mentoring or editing or counseling. A mentor explains how he or she would do it and expects you to follow. An editor reads and provides feedback of your work. A counselor listens to you and is specially trained to help you resolve psychological problems rooted in your past.
A writing coach might explain how she or he would do it but is more likely to work with you to help you discover how to do it for yourself. A writing coach might read part of your work and give feedback but is more likely to help you master the skills that go into writing a strong story. A writing coach does a lot of listening, but focuses on helping you shape your desired future instead of resolving your past and is NOT licensed or trained to provide psychological therapy.
Coaching is a good solution for the following:
- When you need personalized assistance in mastering a writing technique or skill on which you’re weak, so it no longer is holding you back from experiencing success in your writing.
- When you need individualized direction and advice, maybe even brainstorming, for developing a new story idea, so you can write the story of your dreams without getting lost in the middle of it.
- When you have questions or challenges relating to your professional or creative life, so you don’t feel alone or stuck or frustrated, and so you avoid making mistakes that will affect your career
- When you are experiencing writers block, a lack of direction, or discouragement in your writing career, a coach may be able to help you get back on track.
Writing coaching is client-driven: ultimately, it’s all about your needs and your questions and helping you reach your individual potential. Your writing coach understands that you are a professional colleague, and you will be treated with respect and friendliness and total confidentiality. You work with your coach to create a program that is right for you, personalized for your unique situation. The length of each coaching session and the number of sessions will vary—we have coaching packages to fit most budgets.
And all sessions are recorded as ShopTalk Sessions and emailed to you, so you have them as a reference.
Still have questions? Want to know more? Or are you ready to get started? Visit our Contact Page and ask our assistant, Nikki, to schedule a complimentary 15-minute ShopTalk session with one of our coaches. No pressure, no obligation. We just want to get to know you!
Getting started with a writing coach is an easy three-step process:
1) Choose the Coaching Topic that is right for you (these are suggestions based on our clients’ common needs—the initial consultation will help us create a program that is right for you):
Emerging Professional: Helping you transition from hobby writer to career novelist. With your coach, you will focus on business aspects of writing, making time to write, goals, creating office space, writing expenses, etc.
Book Development: Everything you need to get ready to write your novel—story structure and character development focus. Goal, motivation, conflict…plot structure…setting…scene outline—doesn’t matter if you’re a “plotter” or a “winger,” this program will make sure your story starts out structured right.
Client-driven Craft Study: What writing techniques or skills do you want to improve? Here’s your chance to study with your own fiction professional.
Contracted...Now What?: Just got your first book contract? Or on the verge of getting published? Work with a published novelist to find out what you need to do and what you need to NOT do in order to make your publishing debut the most positive experience it can be.
Career and Professional Coaching for the Published Novelist: Published already? Work with a colleague on career development, editor/agent relationships, creative life, and other issues we face as professional novelists.
Overcoming Writers Block: Is your creativity stuck? Fearing you’ll never be able to write again? Most of us fiction writers experience this at one time or another. Let a published novelist give you specific assistance to get back to writing and overcoming creative blocks.
Confident Conferencing: Personalized help to get you ready for a writers conference. For customers of the Writers Conference Survival Guide only.
2) Choose the Coaching Program that is right for you:
The Hemingway: for minimalists and those who value economy. Two 30-min. ShopTalk sessions and up to 5 follow-up emails. $200
The Eliot: for those who value both simplicity and depth. Three 30-min. ShopTalk sessions and up to 10 follow-up emails. $275
The Faulkner: for those who want to utilize the full depth and resources of their coach. 2 hours of ShopTalk sessions, broken up however you like, 15 follow-up emails, and up to five pages of critique or feedback. $400
The Experimentalist: for those who like to make up their own rules. This is a custom package designed by you and your coach to fit your precise needs. It includes a minimum of 1 hour of coaching, but beyond that, it can be tailored to fit your unique needs.
3) Contact Carolyn to schedule your complimentary 15-minute ShopTalk Session with one of our terrific coaches. It's that simple.