Today I have the pleasure of introducing you to Laura and Editorial Stand.
AztecElements: Hi Laura, you run Editorial Stand (www.editorialstand.co.uk), an editing and proofreading company based in London. As an independently published author, I’m keen to know whether your business is changing as a result of changes in the publishing industry as a whole. How long has Editorial Stand been in business now?
Laura: Editorial Stand has been in business for almost a year now. I completed a proofreading qualification in February 2012 before launching Editorial Stand at the end of March that year. Since then I have been marketing the brand, building up a client basis and I pleased to say that things seem to going well.
AztecElements: What’s your view on the changes taking place in the publishing world right now and what kind of future is there for the traditional model?
Laura: The traditional path of finding an agent, getting signed on by a publishing house and receiving your author’s advance is still a very feasible route; however, it would be naive of me to say that it is an easy option for writers publishing their first novel. Even established authors are finding it increasingly difficult to get publishing houses to commit nowadays. The ebook market has taken off in a way that I don’t believe anyone anticipated. Due to this it has become much simpler for authors to get their writing to their readers; anyone can publish using the Amazon Kindle software. However, there is always the problem of authors trying to continuously undercut other authors’ prices.
AztecElements: So does the rise of the independent author present you with more opportunity than before or is it more complex than that?
Laura: There are definitely more independent authors out there looking for editing services; however, because of the way the ebook and self-publishing markets operate, most seem surprised to find out how much editing services cost. Several independent authors I have spoken to do not seem to comprehend the sheer volume of time and effort it takes to fully proofread or copy edit a novel. So while independent authors are on the rise, the need for editing companies to work harder to prove their worth is also on the rise.
AztecElements: How much of your business comes from publishing companies and businesses and how much comes from indie authors?
Laura: I have a mix of publishing house clients, independent authors and clients outside of the publishing industry. To date, I have worked with more independent authors than any other type of client, but as such they tend to be one-off projects. I really enjoy being able to fully get to grips with the author’s style and writing habit. That’s why I am looking to build up Editorial Stand’s speciality to edit for the fantasy and science fiction market; authors writing in these genres tend to write trilogies much more so than any other genre and it is very rewarding to fully get to know an author and their style.
AztecElements: What efforts are you making to reach out to the global network of authors quietly beavering away on their future Man-Booker prize winner?
Laura: I am on Twitter (@EditorialStand) and Facebook (www.facebook.com/EditorialStand) where I connect with authors and readers alike. I keep my followers up-to-date with my services and I chat to them about their writing. I am on Goodreads where I can discuss the books I’m reading and the books I’m looking forward to reading, as well as staying on the lookout for recommendations from other readers; although that’s more of a hobby for me. My blog also attracts a bit of attention from authors as I discuss topics ranging from language analysis and publishing trends to promoting books and authors. It’s all about getting the brand out into the world and I’m always on the lookout for new ways to connect.
AztecElements: I know from my own writing that I need help with sentence structure and punctuation, but do many authors really need this kind of help?
Laura: I would go so far as to say that all authors need an editor of some sort or another. At the very least, every author should hire a proofreader for errors that creep in unnoticed by Word spell checker. But for the majority of writers, a good copy-editor is essential for ensuring the sentences flow well and effectively get the author’s intended meaning across to their readers. The comment I get back most frequently from my clients is that it is remarkable how much you miss when you are so close and so familiar to your text.
AztecElements: Tell me a little bit about the editorial service you offer (in contrast to the proof-reading). What kind of guidance do you provide after reviewing a manuscript?
Laura: Well, the proofreading service, as you know, checks all spelling, syntax, grammar and punctuation. I also offer a copy editing service where I check consistency of the content and any characters (for fiction), as well as analysing the effectiveness of specific terminology and the relevance of the language for the intended readership. Copy editing involves a much more thorough analysis of the language. To clarify, what I do not offer as a service is a developmental edit, which is where an editor will actually comment on the story line and how it developments.
AztecElements: Thanks Laura. If anyone would like to get in touch with Laura or get advice from Editorial Stand, click on this link to get the contact details. You can also follow the weekly updates on the Editorial Stand blog here .