Don’t let the words get in the way of what you want to say.
Consider your favorite Olympic athlete: perhaps she is liquid motion in figure skating, or he is greased lightning on the luge. Whatever the sport, watching the seemingly effortless grace of their performance leaves you in awe, and perhaps not a little envious of their skill. Great writing can create the same impression. We admire the ease with which the author conveys his ideas. However, with the best—the most effective—writing, the author allows her audience to forget about her very existence. The reader himself hurtles down that icy track at 90 miles an hour. She nails that triple axle, rather than just watch from the bleachers.
In both scenarios (the world-class athletes and engrossing authors), we, as their audience, spare little to no thought for key players in the performance: their coaches and editors respectively. This is how it should be. Just as the coach’s goal is to prepare the athlete to perform at the top of their game at the time of their competition, at which time the trainer melds into the scenery (relatively speaking), editors of good written works are invisible.
Even more than the barking, cursing manager on the sidelines of a disastrous game, the only time an editor worms their way into the public’s consciousness is when they do their job badly. As editors at pennyfreeman.com LLC, our job is to keep the lines of communication open, and nothing causes static more than those pesky little ink dots on a page or pixels flickering on a screen, clogging up the flow of information between you and your target audience. Our services martial everything into good order as inconspicuously as possible. Think of us as house elves at Hogwarts. We do our job really well so you don’t have to think of us at all. It’s a pleasure to be of use, and here’s what we do:
At pennyfreeman.com LLC, content editors can serve dual roles, both as executive assistants and in more traditional literary services.
For authors, content editors ensure that their manuscripts are carefully refined with respects to:
- story arc
- character development
Content Editor (Business)
Business services include:
- Fact checkers and investigators
- Presentation materials
- Powerpoint presentations
- Visio and Gantt charts
- Excel charts and diagrams
- other printed material
- business prospectuses
- operating procedures
- employee handbooks
Publishing companies make use of developmental editors, particularly if they are working with known authors with whom they have contracts for a series of books. These editors help authors formulate their ideas and draw a road map for the direction they want their story to go. At pennyfreeman.com LLC, we have developed highly specialized exercises for authors in their outlining process which give them very clear direction and break up any log jams. In the creation of novels, developmental editors guide the author through the production process until the manuscript goes to print.
Consider a story coach your manuscript’s personal trainer. With pennyfreeman.com LLC, we take you through the same developmental exercises that we developed at Xchyler Publishing, beginning with an in-depth analytical questionnaire that will launch you and your manuscript into a training program that will ultimately result in a high-quality, professionally crafted, finished product ready to submit for an agent’s consideration, or for self-publication. We work with any length of manuscript, from flash fiction to full-length novels; fiction and non-fiction.
However, like any good trainer, we offer as much or as little hand-holding as desired, on entire or partial manuscripts. A story coach can read your manuscript, fill out the evaluation, give you her/his recommendations, then leave you to do with them what you will. The choice is yours.
A copy editor focuses on the language arts: proper sentence structure, communication skills, language and punctuation. Is the writer getting their point across? Or, are the words getting in the way? If the project were a house, the developmental editor would be the builder who commissioned the structure, the author would be the general contractor, and the copy editor would be the inspector who ensures everything is up to code. The proofreader is that essential, unsung hero who brings up the rear with the broom.
A proofreader is a a fresh set of eyes. No matter how often you go over your work or how clean you are certain you have your manuscript, mistakes are going to slip through because your subconscious brain fixes what your eyes see before your consciousness ever processes it. Your eyes just glide right over it. There are some tricks to reduce this, such as reading your copy aloud, but there is nothing that compares to a fresh set of eyes for catching the little mistakes.
A proofreader looks for spacing issues (+/-), dropped punctuation, errors in capitalization, transposed homonyms, misnomers, and malapropisms. Proofreaders put the high gloss on your finished project.
For less involved projects, an all-encompassing editor can serve the needs of the author. These may include research projects, dissertations, reports, personal and family histories, etc.
Oral histories are a great way to capture the stories of aging family members, and we at pennyfreeman.com LLC are fully equipped to transcribe those precious memories before it grows too late. We also transcribe recorded personal notes, meetings, conversations, and presentations. We know high levels of accuracy are mandatory, something not easily attained. However, with twenty-eight years of experience, we pride ourselves on our record of keeping good records.
At pennyfreeman.com LLC, we offer our clients the skills we have honed at Xchyler Publishing producing a catalog of more than thirty titles. For authors who wish to self-publish, we offer the resources for internal formatting to print-on-demand specifications, eye-catching cover designs, and sharp marketing printables, and savvy BISAC strategies that will help authors raise above their competition.