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Author Series: What are the types of editors?

Now we've discussed publishing paths and how to market your book online, you have to choose an editor!

Many authors are surprised to hear there are actually several kinds of editors with different roles and responsibilities for your book. They also come in a range of prices and levels of experience.

Although editors can be expensive, they're vital if you want your book to do well. A good editor will ensure your books is up to standard and your readers will enjoy it.


Developmental Editors:

Your developmental editor works with the bigger picture of your novel, such as characters and plot. They know what your audience is looking for, how a story needs to be structured, and what to do to fix it.

A developmental editor might assist you with a full draft of your manuscript, or coach you in writing the book as you go. They'll also help with your overall tone and style, assisting you with developing your author voice.

Not every author needs a developmental editor, but they are a great resource if you're struggling with your book.

Beta Readers:

Many authors will use beta readers before copyediting and proofreading, to make sure their audience will actually like their book. Note: beta readers aren't editors, they're more like test subjects.

You usually won't pay betas - they just enjoy books and want to help you! It's usually best to ask them specific questions, for example, if the plot flowed well or they liked the characters.

Beta readers can be found in many places, but I've found Facebook groups are a great source!

Copy/Line Editors:

This is the most well-known type of editor, who deals with writing style and readability. They'll look at things like:

  • Sentence structure

  • Spelling and grammar

  • Word choice and strength

  • Tense, tone, flow and clarity

Your copyeditor will fix mistakes in your writing an also alert you to issues with your style.


Proofreaders are the final pair of eyes to see your work before publication. Their job is to have a great attention to detail and pick up any typos or mistakes in your work that your editor/designer may have missed!


Consider your needs before hiring an editor and make sure to get a sample edit before deciding on one. Editing rates are usually based on your manuscript length and genre, as well as the extent of editing required. If someone's rates are unusually high or low, consider it a red flag!

At All Write, I assist authors with developmental editing, copyediting and proofreading. If you're looking for an editor, please send a sample of your manuscript to! I'd love to assist you with your novel.


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