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Silver Spring, MD
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Stories To Tell is a full service book publishing company for independent authors. We provide editing, design, publishing, and marketing of fiction and non-fiction. We specialize in sophisticated, unique illustrated book design.

Stories To Tell Books BLOG

Why You Need a Professional Editor

Biff Barnes

When a self publishing author completes a draft of a manuscript their first question is often, “What’s next?”

Susan Daffron of the website Self Pub U, advises, “As someone who has worked in publishing for a lot of years, I believe that I can safely say that everyone -- and I mean everyone -- needs an editor.”

Not every author agrees. They believe that they have carefully revised their manuscript and checked it for correctness. They don’t need an editor.

There’s something that first time writers don’t understand.

“Every writer has blind spots to his or her own writing,” says Ricky Pittman of Writers Weekly.  “You see, you know the story so well that your eye will play tricks on you while you read and you WILL miss what others will see. This is why you need readers and editors.”

Some authors ask friends, colleagues or their high school English teacher to edit their manuscript. But, as Jerry Simmons of the Readers and Writers Blog cautions, “Though it may be tempting to save money and do it yourself, self-editing is not a good substitute for professional editing. Having an objective, experienced eye to evaluate and edit your work is worth its weight in gold. A good editor won’t just fix your grammar and usage oversights, but will let you know what sections in your book need to be expanded, clarified, or removed…an editor will also make sure your story stays consistent, not just in tone, but in plot and “voice” as well. Your editor will let you know about all the problems you (or your friend the high-school English teacher) weren’t aware of.”

Once an author decides that hiring a professional editor is the best thing for her book, there is one more pitfall to avoid. Nancy Peske calls it the #1 myth about hiring an editor. “Any editor can help you with any type of book you’d like to publish.” In reality, says Peske, “Excellent editors may work in several genres, but for the most part, editors specialize. They can’t be experts on everything, and an editor with integrity will tell you flat out if he’s not the right person to help you with your book.”

So when you finish your manuscript give some serious thought to hiring a professional editor who specializes in your genre. If it’s memoir or family history we hope you’ll choose us.

Click here to visit Self-Pub U

Click here to read Ricky Pittman’s full article Why Beginning Writers Need an Editor

Click here to read Jerry Simmons’ article on Interviewing an Editor: The Seven Questions You Need to Ask by Lauren Hidden

Click here to read Nancy Peske’s full article, Seven Common Myths About Hiring a Freelance Editor for Your Book