WordWiser Ink Editing Lab

Answers to Frequently Asked Questions

Book Editing

Frequently answered questions for writers of fiction and nonfiction

How do I prepare my manuscript or document for a copyeditor?

Manuscripts should be double-spaced with one-inch margins on all sides. Ideal fonts to use include Courier New or Times New Roman 12pt. Indent the first line of each paragraph to 0.5″. Each chapter begins on a new page. Start dialogue by a new speaker as a new paragraph. Use double quotations around dialogue. Thoughts can be written in italics or regular text. To see an example of properly formatted manuscript pages, see Sample Novel Manuscript.

What should I send with my request for a quote (RFQ)?

We prefer to receive two to three chapters, preferably from the middle of your manuscript; one complete chapter is the absolute minimum we need. If fiction, your excerpt needs to include both narrative and dialogue.

What types of projects will WordWiser Ink’s editors not accept?

We do not edit poetry or material with religious or heavy sexual (hetero, homo, nor bi) themes (such as erotica). We also do not offer line or developmental editing.

Can I submit my typeset, ready-to-print book to you for copyediting?

Best practices entail having your manuscript copyedited prior to typesetting in a text format, such as Word, Pages, or Google Docs. Proofreading is performed on material that has already been formatted for publication. Self-published authors, in particular, can save significantly on time and costs by having the work done in the proper order.

Book Publishing

Answers to questions pertaining to self-publishing

At what price should I list my book?

Our services do not involve tracking pricing trends or offering recommendations for book pricing. Effective pricing is based on genre, the length of your book, your target audience, and the size of the category/competing titles, among other matters. We prefer to leave that type of thing to those whose businesses specialize in all that pricing strategy entails and focus instead on being experts at what we do. We strongly encourage you to reach out to a book marketing consultant for guidance in determining book pricing.

I plan to self-publish. What are the steps I should take during the editing stage?

Your first draft is never your final draft. After you finish your first draft, set it aside for some time so that you can revisit it with fresh eyes. When you’re self-publishing, always take some time to self-edit using tips such as those outlined in Self-Editing for Fiction Writers. If you have access to a writers group or beta readers, get it critiqued. You might also hire a pro to perform a manuscript analysis. Once you’ve integrated all feedback you choose to accept and it’s in as good shape as you’re capable of producing, now it’s time to send it to a freelance editor. Reach out to at least three editors and submit the same 2-3 sample chapters along with your estimate request. Request a sample edit from each editor on the same pages so that you can compare their work. Use this to select your editor.

Once copyediting is completed, have your manuscript typeset by a professional typesetter, such as DTPerfect, and your cover professionally designed. Hire someone other than your copyeditor to perform the proofreading of the typeset version. One more tip: Be sure to get objective feedback on your cover design.

Typesetting Do’s & Don’ts

  • Never publish your book without having it professionally copyedited before typesetting and professionally proofread after typesetting.
  • Never submit a typeset publication for copyediting. Only submit word processing files for copyediting.
  • Do hire a professional book designer to typeset your book (like Elena R. at DTPerfect.com).

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