Fiction Editor

  • Approved by Revolancer
  • 60 days

The Fine-toothed Comb is an editorial service that means business. My name is Dion Winton-Polak, and I don't do things by halves.

You've spent years perfecting your descriptions, crafting your narratives, making your characters pop. As far as you're concerned, it's done now. Ready to go. Finito. Unfortunately, writers do become word-blind - unable to see the difference between what you mean to say and what's actually there on the page. Some people hit publish and hope to weather negative reviews. Not you, though. Why risk it?

Serious writers take another step before publication. They bring in an Editor - like me - to elevate the project. I bring fresh eyes and a new perspective. I see what's actually there, as a whole, and I help to make it shine.

If you've got a short story you want to submit, a collection you're hoping to sell, a novella or full-blown novel that you want to hit the heights with, then I'm your man. Custom jobs are also considered.

My Fine-toothed Comb covers every aspect of editing, from rhythm and structure to spelling and punctuation. I polish prose, develop dialogue, and patch up the holes in your plot - but I will never forget that this is your work, your story, and your final say. If you need honest feedback, expert advice, and a boost to your chance of success, then take that extra step: get professional. Call on The Fine-toothed Comb. I've been editing fiction since 2015, and my clients are very happy. I can provide Testimonials on request, with links to the authors and publishers for verification.

My costs are based on the time taken to complete each job, which is - in turn - dependent on the quality of the manuscript. If the sample is up to scratch, I will provide an initial estimate. Having read the full manuscript, we can discuss any broad-strokes matters that need fixing first, which will save you time and money. It's all about communication. Get in touch for a personal quote today. Let's do this.


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Offer Description

The Fine-toothed Comb is an editorial service that means business. My name is Dion Winton-Polak, and I don't do things by halves.

You've spent years perfecting your descriptions, crafting your narratives, making your characters pop. As far as you're concerned, it's done now. Ready to go. Finito. Unfortunately, writers do become word-blind - unable to see the difference between what you mean to say and what's actually there on the page. Some people hit publish and hope to weather negative reviews. Not you, though. Why risk it?

Serious writers take another step before publication. They bring in an Editor - like me - to elevate the project. I bring fresh eyes and a new perspective. I see what's actually there, as a whole, and I help to make it shine.

If you've got a short story you want to submit, a collection you're hoping to sell, a novella or full-blown novel that you want to hit the heights with, then I'm your man. Custom jobs are also considered.

My Fine-toothed Comb covers every aspect of editing, from rhythm and structure to spelling and punctuation. I polish prose, develop dialogue, and patch up the holes in your plot - but I will never forget that this is your work, your story, and your final say.

If you need honest feedback, expert advice, and a boost to your chance of success, then take that extra step: get professional. Call on The Fine-toothed Comb. I've been editing fiction since 2015, and my clients are very happy. You can find my Testimonials at www.thefinetoothed.com along with my personal blog and full information on the books I have edited.

My costs are based on the time taken to complete each job, which is - in turn - dependent on the quality of the manuscript. If the sample is up to scratch, I will provide an initial estimate. Having read the full manuscript, we can discuss any broad-strokes matters that need fixing first, which will save you time and money. It's all about communication. Get in touch for a personal quote today. Let's do this.

FAQ

What is the difference between a copy-editing, line editing and proofreading?

I think of this in terms of nets to catch errors in. Copy editing catches the bigger issues to do with consistency, plot, character arcs and the like. Line editing is more focused, catching the smaller issues on the sentence by sentence level. Proofreading is the final pass before publication, searching for poor punctuation, spelling mistakes, repeated words and the like.

How does an edit work? What happens to my words?

I begin by reading the manuscript through and jotting down anything of significant concern or anything I need clarifying. I will then have a Zoom (or equivalent) conversation with you to talk it all through. If there's anything major to fix, you'll do that before I start on the edit proper. After that, I go through your document line by line, nipping and tucking, suggesting alternative phrases, asking you questions (using the Comments feature), correcting errors, and generally raising the quality of your work. I use the Track Changes feature which means that every keystroke is visible. You can see what has been added, what has been deleted and - where it's been appropriate to make comments - you can see my reasoning too. When you receive the document back, you can then go through each change, pressing Accept, Reject, or making your own changes according to your preference. I am paid to give my expert advice; it is down to you to decide how much of it you want to use. Once you have had the opportunity to review my editorial changes and comments, we can have a second call so you can check your understanding, bounce ideas around if you are in two minds about anything, and ask any questions of your own.

Do you make things perfect?

Perfection is an ideal we reach for, but no editor can guarantee it. We use our knowledge, our experience, and our diligence you make your work as good as possible. The vast majority of problems will be picked up and addressed on the first round of edits. As a freelancer, that is normally all people are prepared to pay for. However, some clients see the benefit of a second or a third round of edits, gradually polishing it to perfection - or as near as can be managed. Each successive editorial pass is half the price of the previous one because there is less work to be done each time.

Editing is expensive. Is there a cheaper way to test you out before I commit to a big job?

Absolutely. If you would like a demonstration of my editorial ability, if you would like to see the kinds of errors I pick up on, the way I communicate with my clients, the way in which I polish your prose, we can do a Sample Edit. I would edit the 3000 words you have already provided me with, and simply charge you for the time it took. Should you decide that you don't wish to proceed, it won't have cost you very much. Or, if you decide that yes, you do want me to go ahead with the full job, I'll deduct the cost of the sample edit from the total. Thus, it will have been for free, effectively.

Why don't you have a straight price? I want to see exactly what it will cost in advance.

Different people write at different abilities. The poorer the quality, the longer it takes to edit. Whilst the sample I see will help me to estimate your level (and thus the time it will take me to complete the job), there may well be complications along the way which take a significant amount of work to fix. Charging by the word would not be a true reflection of the effort I expend; time is the only way to measure that. I keep close track of it using the toggl. app on my computer, and I limit the number of editing hours per day to ensure a consistency of focus and quality.

What are your qualifications?

I've been a life-long avid reader. I studied English Literature and achieved a BA (Hons) gaining a first for my dissertation. I have been a regular and analytical reviewer on Geek Syndicate and the Ginger Nuts of Horror. I have taken two anthologies from core concept to publication, with an editorial eye every step of the way. I have been editing fiction for small presses and independent authors since 2015, earning outstanding Testimonials.

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