Developmental Editing & Ghostwriting
How we’ll work
Developmental editing is often referred to as book coaching. Our relationship will be a mix of author homework, one-on-one coaching/consulting, document reviews, and perhaps even some substantive editing.
Each session includes author homework, homework/document review, and a forty-minute coaching/consulting call.
We will “meet” on my conference line (accessible by phone or computer) for each forty-minute appointment, and you may send me documents to review and/or edit as needed.
As part of our work together, I will send you audio files of our phone calls, a quick reference style guide with the most common grammar, punctuation, and usage errors I see, in-document comments (comment bubbles), and custom video tutorials/feedback.
We Will: develop a publishing plan based on your platform, goals and budget; define your ideal reader; choose a style and approach; define the scope and structure of your book by creating a table of contents and chapter subheading; and add notes to help you stay focused and write faster and better. We may also fully develop a sample chapter or two.*
We will plan for and structure your manuscript with the following in mind:
Your Ideal Reader—Every decision we make will be driven by your ideal reader’s needs and goals.
Your Goals and Brand—My role is to help you reach your reputational and revenue goals by helping you form strong emotional and intellectual bonds with everyone who comes in contact with your message and brand.
Perspective and Authority—We’ll look at your unique selling and value propositions and emphasize what sets you apart and makes you the right person to write this book right now.
Theme and Thesis, Structure of Argument, Supporting Evidence, and Overall Persuasiveness—This is the true architectural aspect of the project. If you don’t have a solid foundation, load-bearing walls, hallways, and clearly defined, functional spaces, readers will leave and never come back. Non sequiturs and other logical fallacies and a lack of reliable and properly cited sources undermines your authority and will not pass inspection.
Tone and Voice—If you’ve ever written an email or text that the receiver misunderstood, you know how difficult tone can be to convey in writing. We’ll work on striking a tone that readers will welcome. I’ll also help you begin to develop your voice, the voice that makes you stand out from others who are talking to your readers too.
Language Use—We’re going to discuss intentional versus unintentional communication: jargon and unconscious bias for example. We’ll develop a list of words and theme characteristics that will keep your writing focused and precise as you move forward.
Engagement and Readability—We’ll discuss ways to write and format your manuscript so it engages people of all communication styles, paying particular attention to your ideal reader’s needs and predictable preferences. This includes how images, charts, call outs, and other visual elements can enhance or detract from the message.
Readability—What will the book look like? I’ll evaluate its basic structure and how images, charts, call outs, and other visual elements enhance or detract from the message and identify ways to improve its visual appeal and reader recall.
Length—We’ll set rough goals for the length of the entire manuscript and each chapter. Your ideal reader and their needs and preferences, the genre, and your goals all factor into this decision.
Marketing, Book Promotion, and Affinity Groups—I will look for opportunities to capture a wider audience and elevate your reputation and raise brand awareness.
Risk Management—I’ll put my risk management background to use when looking for potential for claims of defamation, plagiarism, breach of confidence, copyright and/or trademark infringement; financial, reputational, and other types of brand risk. I may refer you to the author-specific advice my attorney has written about and to him for a consultation.)
The Winner—We will clarify your purpose and what the reader will gain from finishing the book—the takeaway message. We’ll focus on ways to increase the chances that your reader will use your book as a resource, look to you as an expert, and recommend you and your book to others.
For more, I invite you to read this article I wrote for members of the Nonfiction Authors Association: Write Authoritative and Compelling Nonfiction by Thinking Like a Developmental Editor
Timeline: determined by your needs, goals, and pace
70 % of nonfiction books are ghostwritten. Having a professional ghostwriter write your book is an efficient way to get your ideas into book form without compromising your income-producing activities.
When working with ghostwriting clients, I conduct a series of interviews (in person or recorded calls) that allows you to get your information out of your head and into a format I use to write the book. When interviewing you and writing the manuscript, I keep all of the same factors in mind that I do when working with developmental editing clients.
I make the process as easy on you as possible and provide a high-quality document that reflects your vision and message.
Timeline: typically 3-6 months
Investment & Payment options
Movement Package: $1,200 for 3 sessions
Momentum Package: $2,100 for 6 sessions
Massive Action Package: $3,600 for 12 sessions
*Sample chapters and book proposal writing help also available. Ask me for project and investment details.
$21,000-27,000 depending on the length and complexity of the book and if or how I am credited (“with” status on the cover as in by you with me is the least expensive option)
Reasonable travel and accommodation expenses not included but only necessary if you prefer to meet in person.
I invoice through QuickBooks.
Contracting & Retainer Fee: If after your free consultation we decide to work together, I will send you a contract/agreement and an invoice. Full payment required upfront for Movement and Momentum packages. Massive Action clients may pay upfront and in full or in 3 monthly installments of $1,200/each.
For ghostwriting clients, I request an upfront, nonrefundable retainer fee. Subsequent scheduled payments are based on the duration of the project.
Project Scheduling: Upon payment, I will send you my quick reference style sheet and your first homework/call prep document and give you access to my calendar to schedule our first call.
Appointments: Consulting appointments are scheduled on a first come first served basis.
Late Arrivals/No Shows: I will wait on the line for ten (10) minutes then log off and turn my attention to other clients’ work. Unless you notify me by email at least 24 hours in advance, you will be charged for your time block.
Topics & Genres
business, entrepreneurship, and leadership
travel and culture
health and wellness
law, ethics, equality, and social justice
plant-based nutrition and evidence-based medicine