Fiction line editing

When done right, a line edit can transform a good manuscript into an unputdownable story.


What is line editing?

Lots of people confuse line editing and copyediting. While copyediting takes a scientific approach to ensuring technically accurate writing, line editing goes a step further.

Line editing hones and enhances your manuscript’s aesthetics so each sentence makes an impact. A good line edit goes beyond the technical. A good line edit helps you captivate readers and compel them to turn pages.

What does a line editor do?

A line editor will examine your project line by line and consider your prose on multiple levels. 

As a line editor, my editing style goes beyond basic corrections. I’m not just here to make sure your fiction is technically accurate. I’m also here to help you execute your story’s concept in every paragraph, sentence, and word.

My line edits won’t just improve your current project. I’ll also provide useful insights and tips to show you how to develop your writerly skills.

Who needs line editing?

Writers who are confident they have solidified the main elements of their story collection or novel require close editing. 

Once you’ve secured your structure and plot, a hands-on line edit will help you fill your work’s potential.

If you’re in any doubt as to whether you’ve finalised your overall plot and character arcs, you should seek a developmental edit or story critique before approaching a line editor. 

While developmental editing takes a chainsaw approach to help you make big story changes, line editing is more of a manicure. I’m here to examine the finer details, so the big picture must be right first.

Will line-editing change my voice?

No. It’s my job to get to know you and your book so I can embody your voice. I will accentuate, enhance, and hone your style, but I won’t change it. Your book should always remain recognisable as yours

You’ll get a feel for how I achieve this in your free sample edit. More on that further down this page.

How will you receive your edits?

I’ll make your edits in Microsoft Word or Google Docs, using Track Changes and the comments feature to provide an in-depth markup. 

You’ll also receive a style sheet (based on New Hart’s Rules, unless you prefer an alternative style) and an editorial report that collates my overall observations on how to best move forward with your novel or short stories.

How many edits will you receive?

The number of edits depends on the level of editing your manuscript needs.

However, on average, I make around 24,000 edits and 600 comments on a 60,000-word manuscript. You’ll also receive an editorial report and style sheet with additional feedback.

That said, the number of edits you will receive depends on the required depth of line editing. 

What does line editing cost?

My rate is £50.00 per hour.

I can draw up a quote of the number of hours I will need to edit your project upon seeing a 500-word sample of your novel or collection, which you won’t pay for if you don’t move forward with me as your editor. 

This way, I know how long I need to edit your manuscript and you know whether you like my editing style.

What will your line edits address?

Sound good?

Get in touch to find out how I can help with your fiction project.