Sunday, October 24, 2021

Finding Your Editor -- Part I

Finding an 
editor you can work with and have confidence can be as daunting as it can be exciting. Exciting? Absolutely! It means you're confident in your story, your betas have pointed out suggestions that you've considered, and you're ready to publish. Daunting because you've seen your fellow authors post that they're looking for an editor and you've seen how hundreds of us will reply with the equivalent of "Pick me!"

How do you wade through potentially hundreds of replies to choose just one? Trust your instincts ... and do your homework. 

Read through their replies. What catches your eye? Is it their picture. Their list of accomplishments? Is it a recommendation from someone you recognize? Heck, is it just the tone of their reply that tugs at you? Make a list of these potential editors and start investigating. 

"I'm not a detective" may be your reply to that, but in this, you really kind of are. Take the time to visit their websites. Look through their portfolios to see what they've done in the past. Peruse their recommendations and client comments. And, since we all know cost is an issue -- especially if you're self-publishing -- check out their rates if they're listed. As you do this, narrow down your list to those who are hitting the marks on your internal checklist.  

When you have your list narrowed to the few you feel might be a good fit, reply to them and ask for a sample edit. I suggest that you send the same 5-10 pages of manuscript. As they come back, compare how the edits and comments work for you? Do you need someone who's abrupt and just sends the edits back to you? Or do you prefer someone who takes the time to, yes, correct, but also guide and explain why they made the edits they did? Did they send you a review letter with suggestions explained and detailed? Did they return not only the edited version, but also a clean copy with the edits accepted so that you can see how your work would look if you accepted the edits? Of those who sent samples, pick three. And then ... 

Talk to them! Really talk, not just emails and IM's. Tell them what you're looking for and what your plans are for publishing. Talk about the edits, why they made them, talk about how the editor works, heck, even talk about the editor's cat. Anything that gives you a feel for the person, if they're someone you think will be supportive, if they're someone you can work with, and, yeah, even the dreaded money talk. And if none of your first three picks work? Try again with your next three! Your editor is out there and I know you‘ll find what works best for you. 

There are so many variables that go into an editor's price quote (Finding Your Editor ... Part II). But for now, know that a good editor doesn't need to cost an arm and a leg. Yes, there are those who will charge thousands. Often, you'll find editors who will charge by the word, by the number of passes they take through the manuscript, or even those like me. What do I do?  

ATEditing understands that self-publishing is hard and expensive enough. I offer flat rates depending on manuscript size with easy payment plans that will help you realize your dream of seeing your book on a distributor's book list! 

If you have any questions, visit me at or email me at I'll be happy to help! 

Wednesday, November 25, 2020

Welcome to ATEditing! (Updated from 2018)


Welcome to my world! The coffee's on – so please feel free to grab a cup, pull up a comfy chair and relax!

The world is full of blogs with subjects as diverse as "My Son's First Tooth" to "The Art of Global Thermo-Nuclear War" (thank you Matthew Broderick and War Games). The shifting winds may take me down a few rabbit holes while I enter the world of blogging, but for today, I want to give you a small introduction to me and
my baby, Amy Thompson Editing (ATEditing).

Right off the bat, let me announce to the world -- I am a grammar cop -- and proud of it. 

Everyone has seen the memes about the horrors of the use of "there, their and they're" and "to, two and too." To me, the horror is real. I don't know if it's the result of Mrs. Smith's seventh grade language arts class, where such errors were immediately met with her raising her aspirin bottle and proclaiming that we were "giving her an Excedrin headache." Or, perhaps, it was three years of Mrs. Smoley's gentler tutelage on journalistic writing and her insistence that we triple and quadruple check such things before anything went to print. Or maybe it's just that I was born with that gene that screams "WARNING" when such things cross my path. Regardless, it's a skill that I've been able to use repeatedly throughout my career to rather satisfying results.

Ah, the career. Some might say that I never did decide what I wanted to be when I grew up. When I first went to college, I was going to be the next version of Woodward and Bernstein, set the world on fire with my amazing prose and earn that Pulitzer Prize for Journalism. When that didn't work out, I tried my hand at counseling, clerical work, teaching, working in a prison, editing textbooks, being a stay-at-home mom, processing mortgage loans, managing a small non-profit and, lately, being the school secretary at my kids' middle school. Every one of those side trips taught me something new, allowed me to write, edit and design to various degrees, and kept my love of writing and language alive and well. And, despite the side trips, I've always needed to keep my hand in the editing and writing game. 

Amy Thompson Editing (ATEditing) was an idea that had been in the back of my head for a very long time. Within a period of a few months, I found myself helping my husband edit his website, creating an event flyer for a friend, designing a brochure for a referral, writing a resume for a recent college graduate, helping a high school graduate with his college applications, polishing a curriculum vitae and being approached to edit another website. My fears of striking out on my own were set aside and my new adventure started taking shape.  

And what an adventure it is! I’m a life-long learner and a firm believer that one should never stop exploring new horizons. If nothing else…it’s fun! This quest has me learning everything from how to market a small business to how to prove that I know what I’m doing to strangers in order to build a client base, to how to work at home and be productive with three teenagers arguing over who gets to watch what on Netflix. It’s a challenge, yet one that is always full of promise and excitement…and I’d like to invite you to share my journey with me. I promise a fresh pot of coffee, a comfy place to relax and, just maybe, a little gem that will help you along in your adventure.

Until next time – be well!

(* Updated from 2018)

          To learn more about ATEditing, visit For any questions or to discuss your manuscript/project, please contact me at