Q: How long will it take you to edit my book?
A: It depends what else is on my plate at the time, but I typically ask for a week per 20,000 words for line edits, and a week per 35,000 words for developmental edits/beta reads.
You’ll get more complete, creative feedback if you give your story time to percolate in my brain. But you are always welcome to ask if you need something faster! If you have a firm deadline or you know you’ll need a quick turnaround, get in touch with me as far in advance as possible. I’ll work with you to meet your timeline if I can, and if I can’t, I’ll just say so—no harm, no foul. I may request a rush fee.
I will always ask for a rush fee for doing line edits faster than 20k/week.
I use a compression factor to calculate rush fees. This means I multiply the usual price by the standard turnaround divided by the actual turnaround. (So: the standard turnaround for a detailed edit of an 80k manuscript is 28 days. If I do it for you in 21, the compression factor is 28/21 = 1.33—a 33% rush fee.)
Q: Do you do Jewish sensitivity reads?
A: No. That simply isn’t something I’m good at. (But I am always thrilled to help with Jewish history research and/or to answer questions!)
If I were hiring an Ashkenazi Jewish sensitivity reader for myself, I would definitely choose Katherine Locke. I really trust their judgment both about books and about Judaism.
If your Jewish character is Sephardi, Aleksei Valentín read “All or Nothing” and The Wife in the Attic for me and I recommend him without reservation. You can get in touch with him at valentinaleksei (at) gmail (dot) com.
Q: Can you put me in touch with agents or publishers?
A: No. I help people with their books, not their careers. (I barely know any agents or editors anyway!)
Q: Do you do copyediting or proofreading?
A: No. I highly recommend Kim Runciman of Night Vision Editing! She has great judgment and good general historical knowledge, and she’s super easy to work with.
Q: Do you bill in advance? Are payment plans available?
A: Most short-term projects will be billed at the time of service.
I typically can’t offer payment plans for new clients. That said, it is always okay to ask! For first-time clients with full manuscript reads, I request a non-refundable deposit of 35% of the estimated total cost (based on your estimated wordcount). The balance (calculated from final wordcount) is due when you send me the manuscript. No refunds can be given after my work has started.
Q: What if I book a project with you, and I can’t turn it in on time?
A: I understand that life happens, and that creativity can’t always be scheduled! Just try to keep me in the loop, and be honest about what’s going on and what you need. I’ll offer you options for how to adjust the timeline. Depending on what else is on my calendar, I may ask for a longer turnaround or a rush fee.
Hopefully, we can mutually agree on a new timeline! But if not, you can always cancel. You’ll lose your deposit (if applicable), but you won’t owe me anything more.