Do I really need an editor?
So I want to polish up my book but I've read it probably close to a hundred times. I'm sure I've missed a lot. The grammatical aspect isn't what I'm super worried about. When I read another book (if it's self published) I find that I can look the other way on errors- as long as it doesn't take away from the story. What I'm more looking for is someone to look at development, plot and the overall story. Maybe I use too many 'ly' adjectives or too much filler.
There's a great blog that I view that is done by a book editor. It's run by +Laura Carlson. Here is a link. She explains the different types of editing done to books. She also offers her services and blogs frequently. If you follow her, tell her I sent you! :)
Manuscript Critique This is the most basic form of editing. The editor will read your book and give their feedback. They don't edit into the novel instead most write a couple pages of notes. There's not much grammatical unless the issue is blaring. Mostly the editor looks for plot holes, issues with character development and any other general thoughts.
Content Editing This is the other end of the spectrum in regards to copy editing. Instead of focusing on grammar, flow and styling this form of editing focuses solely on the meat of your book. This form is also done into the manuscript and is very specific. For Laura, she says that each chapter gets a couple pages of feedback. This form of editing is a step above manuscript critiques and much more in depth- making it more expensive.
Developmental Editing This is a different type of editing altogether. Usually a developmental editor will meet or talk with an author in the early stages of their book. They talk about where the book is headed, plot and how it all will come together. Once the book is finished this type of editing usually goes through and makes sure paragraphs are where they should be. They also address cutting and adding to the book- suggesting where to go on and if the book is whole.
Is it worth the price?
I did a post a couple months ago about editing prices. This stuff isn't cheap- but that's okay. If the service was cheap it wouldn't be reputable and the editor probably wouldn't care as much. The prices end up being worth it. I can't tell you how many reviews I see on amazon where someone says the ending was awful or they couldn't relate to a character. These issues could have been fixed, had they hired an editor prior to releasing the book.
This page shows just how much editing is according to EFA. This of course are averages but it's nice to keep these in the back of your mind. The last thing you want is to get scammed and someone to take your money. So keep in mind that if you see prices way above or way below these, it's probably BS.
In my personal opinion I do this it's worth it to hire an editor. I've contacted several editors getting quotes and getting a feel for them. I want my work to be the best that it can be. I don't want a reader to start and think I got lazy with editing.
How do I pick an editor?
This is very important It's crucial to shop around and find someone who fits with you. It would be stupid to hire an editor that doesn't like your specific genre. They already aren't going to fit well. Look into previous works an editor has done and see if you fit in. Email the editor and talk about your work- you'll be able to tell if they're interested or not. You want someone who will be on your team and ultimately support you. Don't be hasty and pick a random person. It's important you get the best bang for you buck.