Madwriters will charge based on your specific project and needs, but the following reflects our typical rates. We usually request an initial sample of 5-10 pages to perform a sample edit. From this sample, we can determine the manuscript’s needs, and you can see the kind of feedback and support you’d receive before proceeding to a letter of agreement.

Contracts, rates, and editorial guidelines adhere to the recommendations of the Editorial Freelancer’s Association (EFA) and National Association of Independent Writers and Editors (NAIWE).

Manuscript evaluation

This is your editing need if you’re in the early stages and want to make sure that all the important elements of the piece are in place. An evaluation will look at high-level elements, assess what’s working in the piece as a whole, and make recommendations for the next steps toward making the work publishable. Eval rates are determined by page count:

  • $25 for 1-15 pages
  • $50 for 15 – 50 pages
  • $1/page for MSS above 50 pages

For billing purposes, a page is considered the industry standard of a 12-pt font, 1″ margin, double-spaced typed sheet, approximately 250 words.

Developmental editing – 2 cents/word

Developmental editing looks at the high-level aspects of your MS and how it works as a whole. Where an eval will guide you to the next steps, a developmental edit will contain specific suggestions for improvement and questions to help develop the story or message of the piece.

For fiction and creative nonfiction, a developmental edit considers plot, character development, scene, conflict and tension, dialogue, theme, and language. For other nonfiction, developmental editing looks for appropriate support for research, use of sources, architecture, message, and language.

A developmental edit pays close attention to structure and pacing, making sure all the big pieces are in place. Feedback on a developmental edit will be directed toward aspects that will bring out the best shape of a book. One-on-one discussions with the editor to discuss feedback and next steps are included in the fee.

Line-editing – 3-4 cents/word

Line-editing pays attention to each paragraph and sentence to make sure the language is clean, strong, clear, tight, stylistically coherent, and readable. This is the level of editing to choose after developmental work has been done and it is time to make the language as strong as it can possibly be.

Consultations with the editor on feedback and a review of changes are included in the fee.

Proofreading or copy-editing – 1-2 cents/word

Proofreading makes sure a MS is ready for submission for publication and copy-editing makes sure a formatted or typeset MS is error-free. Madwriters recommends using a different editor for developmental/line-editing and proof-reading/copy-editing tasks in order to have an extra set of eyes to ensure that your manuscript is flawless and publication-ready. Your editor will check for grammatical, spelling, and punctuation errors and also ensure stylistic consistency, factual accuracy, and correct formatting.

Short projects – $25/page

Get professional feedback on your personal statement, query letter, synopsis, book proposal, children’s book, website text, grant application, or jacket copy. For billing purposes, a page is considered the industry standard of a 12-pt font, 1″ margin, double-spaced typed sheet, approximately 250 words.

Writing coach/personalized writing instruction – $30/hr

This level of contact will involve discussion to get your project where it needs to be. This is the service to choose if you have gotten stuck, are struggling to finish a piece, or just don’t know where you’re going with something you’ve started. This is also the service to choose if you’d like ongoing support from someone who will keep you writing, assess your development, and generate assignments or projects that will help you expand and perfect your skill.

For more information, to discuss a project, or to inquire about other services that suit your work, e-mail Misty. We look forward to helping you bring your project to its best possible shape!