So now, whether you wrote the book yourself, or used a ghostwriter, you should have a finished worked in front of you. This is where it gets easier. Now you need to find an editor. Some writers skip this portion, but I would not advise it. A book riddled with errors is extremely difficult to sell and often you will not have return buyers. Trust me, hiring an editor is worth every penny. I recommend having your work edited two to five times, as even the best editors can miss small mistakes.
There are a few ways to hire editors. One is to recruit family or friends. While this is the cheapest way to acquire editing services, I don’t recommend relying on this alone, as friends and family—while great for feedback—are not always best for small English mistakes such as using the comma etc. I’ve had at least one friend look at each of my published novels, but I always follow with a professional edit. This keeps my costs low and makes my friends feel special. Paying family and friends can be difficult. Usually, I offer them a free, signed, copy of the book, as well as a small fee, such as a dinner, or $50.
After they have finished their edit, I proceed to hiring a professional editor. There are many ways and websites who offer these services. Any large publishing house will also offer editing, but the websites I use that help me save money are reedsy.com and upwork.com. Both websites allow you to post a listing and receive offers from editors. I cannot reiterate this enough, you get what you pay for. That is the ultimate bottom line. If you pick a “professional” editor to edit your book for $100, it’s probably not going to be a well worked edit. Keep that in mind. Most reputable editors will charge one cent per word. So if you have an 80,000 word book, expect to pay about $800. Now if you go through a publishing house, expect to pay double, or triple that amount depending on how famous the publishing house is. See why I prefer to hire freelancers?
Make sure you vet anyone you hire very thoroughly. Check reviews, recommendations, ask for a sample of work, ask what they specialize in. For example, if you are writing a crime book, try to find an editor who has a little knowledge of police procedure or is, a lawyer. Trust me these people do exist it just takes time to find them! Once you have found an editor, set up a payment plan. Most freelancers will want a little something up front, but then the rest can be split between a payment at the halfway point and the end. Either way, make a decision and sign a contract. That way you will both be protected.