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Developmental editing

Our Developmental editing service

Writing is a continual learning process. The best authors develop their skills over time and constantly strive to improve. And there is a lot to learn: plotting; dialogue; action scenes and set pieces; character development; continuity and consistency; style, language and tone.
Our developmental edit is specifically designed to help you bring your writing to the next level. Our experienced team of editors will guide and support you, helping you to grow as a writer, as you take your book project from draft manuscript to finished product.

Who is the service for?

If you are a new writer, setting out on your first book project, or a more experienced writer who wants to improve your skills, this service is for you. We will work with you to identify the areas where you need to develop new or better skills, to show you how to improve, and to support you as you expand your writing technique and bring your project to fruition.

How does it work?

You send your manuscript to us (we recommend you send it as a Word file). We will produce a comprehensive report, setting out the issues you need to deal with and areas for improvement. The report will look at all the elements of your book, and go into forensic detail where necessary. We will also indicate if the book needs copy editing at this stage.
When you receive the report, you will be in a position to work on your book, rewriting, improving and enhancing the original draft. As you progress, we will provide interim reports (usually up to a maximum of three) to show you where you are making good progress, and where you need to do further work.

Then (if we have not already done so) we will provide a comprehensive copy edit so that your book is in prime condition and free of errors. If we have already copy edited the book, we will offer a final check to ensure the manuscript is in good condition. We will also provide a brief final report, reflecting on the progress you have made as a writer, and offering advice to help you move forward and develop your skills and experience.

How much does it cost?

For a manuscript of up to 90,000 words, our basic fee for the developmental editing package is £1,950: this includes all stages and elements of the process from initial assessment to final report. This fee is likely to be slightly higher if the manuscript is significantly longer, or if there are substantial issues that require extra time and effort on the editor's part.

Fees are payable in advance.

This service is primarily designed for fiction manuscripts. If you have a non-fiction book and you wish to engage in a developmental edit, we are happy to consider your book and suggest a practical plan. The fee for non-fiction is likely to be slightly higher than for fiction, depending on: length of manuscript; level of technical complexity; and the standard and condition of the draft manuscript.


We will work with you to establish a practical timeline for all stages of the developmental edit. We will usually provide the initial report within two weeks of receipt of your manuscript; and we usually turn the copy editing around in two weeks or less. We generally recommend that you set time aside to work on your book so that the process runs smoothly and efficiently.

We strongly recommend that you send your work to us as a standard Microsoft Word document. Other formats, such as pdf files, make editing much more difficult.


Copy editing services

Copy editing for self-publishers

Getting your manuscript copy edited

Manuscript polishing service

English Language Editing service

Writer's edit

The Cutting edit

Services for self-publishers

Proof-reading service

Which service?

Inside Publishing on Copy editing and Proof-reading