Developmental Editing

Chapter by chapter, scene by scene, a developmental edit will help you slim down a bloated manuscript and help bring the overall purpose of your story on point.

What’s Developmental Editing?

Developmental editing (sometimes referred to as content or structural editing) involves in-depth, intense, bone-deep critiquing of your manuscript. It is the most time-intensive, intricate service that we offer, and I’ll put everything I have into it in order to bring out the absolute best in your work.  

Chapter by chapter, scene by scene, a developmental edit will help you slim down a bloated manuscript, provide clarity, structure, and organization where needed — and help bring the overall purpose of your story on point. The focus is solely on the story (fiction) or content (nonfiction).

Developmental Editing with Anita

While developmental editing your writing, I will look at the “big picture” and ask the tough questions that need to be asked to help you create the best story possible.

Because this process is so nuanced, I offer a free consultation where you and I can clearly express our expectations and goals.

Using Track Changes, I will make specific suggestions for further development, recommendations to rework some areas or provide possibilities to tighten up loose ends in your manuscript. We will also remain in contact via email during the process.

Areas of Focus

I’ll focus on the following areas:

  • * Your Specific Areas of Concern
  • * Broad recommendations (Suggestions to clarify the Big Picture)
  • * Plot/Premise (What questions are being asked in the narrative? Do these questions drive the story, propelling the plot forward? Will the questions engage the reader and lead the reader to a satisfying resolution?)
  • * Dialogue (Does it sound natural, true to character? Is the flow of speech in tune with the pacing of the story?)
  • * Worldbuilding (Consistency, authenticity, and believability)
  • * Story Structure
  • * Character Development (Are the characters multidimensional? Are their personalities and voices consistent? What are their internal and external conflicts, and are their motivations clear throughout the story? Is there enough movement and character depth to make them believable in the world created?)
  • * Conflict (How clear and comprehensive are the primary and secondary conflicts? Does the central conflict develop in an engaging way that captivates the reader?
  • * Pacing
  • * Genre Placement (Where does your novel fit in the publishing industry?)
Editorial Letter

In short, I’ll summarize how your story works as a book. We’ll also brainstorm the next steps you may want to take when you revise your manuscript.

In addition to the notes made within your document using Track Changes, I’ll also provide a detailed editorial letter. The letter, circa 5-10 pages in length, will describe the main areas suggested for improving and polishing your manuscript based on my developmental editing observations.

What Happens After Developmental Editing?

Please note that developmental editing will not include revisions or rewrites done by me. However, I may include examples of rewritten segments in my editorial letter to clarify suggestions. Once developmental editing is complete, and after you have completed your revisions, I recommended that your manuscript be line-edited. (As a general rule, manuscripts should be copyedited and proofread before publication.)

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