brandy street press nonfiction editing

Developmental Editing
Copy Editing
Developmental & Copy Editing
Other Basic Terms

Developmental Editing

We provide overall direction by helping you to form a vision for your nonfiction book, then coaching you chapter by chapter to ensure that the vision is successfully executed. A developmental edit typically includes significant structuring or restructuring of the manuscript. It also addresses the prose itself, suggesting rewrites at the chapter, section, paragraph and sentence levels.

More specifically, we work with you on the following tasks:

  • Brainstorm with you to arrive at what will make your book come alive, taking into account the needs of audience and market and bringing your vision into focus.
  • Help you whittle the manuscript’s concept down to a sharp thesis or story message, complete with a working title that reflects your ideas.
  • Assist you in locating narrative threads and lines of argument, braiding them into a coherent structure and choosing between telling a story or making an argument.
  • Work with you to create a timeline and fine tune it into a draft table of contents.
  • Work with you to craft a full developmental blueprint for the project that fleshes out the table of contents with draft chapter theses.
  • Review your work as you progress through each chapter, helping you to establish an interesting rhythm by rearranging passages, prompting you for new passages, eliminating unneeded passages, adding subheads, weighting chapters equally, and editing for pace.
  • Sand, trim and polish your structure by making sure that your manuscripts flows and that you use adequate transitions and well-placed conclusions.
  • Consider the color and texture of your prose, ensuring that your unique voice comes across.
  • Verify that your concepts are vividly illustrated and determine whether you need any extra touches—sidebars, text boxes, charts and graphs—to drive home your points.

Note: Some manuscripts may not require quite this level of developmental edit. For example, you may have already advanced to the table of contents stage or even begun drafting the text of the book. In such a case, the per page rate can be negotiated to reflect work already completed. In many cases, we're able to adjust pricing with a review of the manuscript or sample chapters.

Contact us at for pricing.

Copy Editing

A line-by-line edit for basic language issues. Once your manuscript is completed in draft form, we'll do a careful edit for a number of issues, including:

  • Checking for consistency in voice
  • Suggesting ways to make the language more interesting and active
  • Eliminating clichés and stereotypes
  • Editing for proper grammatical constructions
  • Detecting word variety and spelling errors
  • Ensuring standard manuscript formatting

You will end up with a manuscript that flows seamlessly and is interesting to read. We can edit either in Microsoft Word (a redlined and commented version) or on a hardcopy of the manuscript (if you provide one)—whichever you prefer.

Note: This should not be considered a final proofread of the manuscript, which should be done just prior to publication to ensure that no errors were introduced in the editing/revision process.

Contact us at for pricing.

Developmental & Copy Editing (Reduced Pricing for Combined Services)

To ensure a quality edit, each of the above should be done separately, requiring multiple reads. If you choose to have us do both an evaluation and a copy edit, we'll read your manuscript carefully at least twice (often going back and rereading individual sections several more times). You should consider this option if you want your manuscript to be ready to head out the door to an agent or publisher.

Note: If the developmental edit uncovers some major issues, or even several minor ones that you will want to work on, we suggest that these two processes happen in stages. In that case, we would offer you a developmental edit, then allow you time to work on your piece before resubmitting it for a copy edit. For this reason, it’s not always possible forus to give you a firm deadline for completing both of these edits together.

Contact us at for pricing.

Other Basic Terms:

  • Click here for a full bio and curriculum vita of your editor

  • Samples of work can be provided upon request

  • Turnaround times are negotiable

  • One half of the project fee is due prior to the start of the edit, with the other half due within 30 days of project completion





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