Robert Smythe

Feedback from Authors on Critique Circle


Thank you for taking the time to critique my story. Your review was extremely helpful...I can't thank you enough, you have giving me a blue print on what to look for. You gave me a lot of ideas that I have already started to incorporate. Thank you again.

Rachmtbs Nov. 2, 2014 


Thank you for critiquing my story...I so appreciate your willingness to share your knowledge and encouraging words! What a gold mine.

Leslie Davis Nov. 3, 2014


Thank you for critiquing my story, "A Muddy Bath (Revised - My Master is a Leper)". Every critique has been very helpful but yours is at the top. Your thoughts on POV were beneficial and it has allowed me to rewrite the story in a way that I hope is much more engaging.

Mark Ukescalera Oct. 6, 2014


Thanks for the awesome tips and hints. You've given me a lot of excellent ideas. I really appreciate the level of detail along with explanations. Thank you!  ... Your crit was highly technical. It helped me understand that particular dimension of writing.
Greg Donewar (Mountain 33)  Oct. 16, 2014 and follow-up feedback Nov. 4, 2014


​Thank you for critiquing my story ...That critique was awesome! That is all I can say, other than, I will study it. Thank You!!!
Ld1532, Oct. 5, 2014


The above excerpts were quoted, with their permission, from their feedback to Rob.


Editing Services


I do a lot of editing and critiquing on internet websites. Online Writers Workshop for Fiction, Fantasy, and Horror is one of them, Critique Circle another. If you post a chapter or story there you will receive comments and suggestions from many writers. Perhaps I will see it and provide an edit for you. (Email me in advance, and I'll look for it.)


When the time comes that you are serious about publishing your story, you might want a professional editor to look at the bigger picture. I perform this service for clients. There are various levels, ranging from proofreader to copy editor to developmental editor. If you hired me to proofread, I'll fix your mistaken words and grammar, and add a few suggestions (because I can't help it.) As a copy editor, I perform the task I do for the writers on the websites: proofreading and suggesting how to make the story better. When I'm in developmental editor mode, I'm looking at overall structure, character development, story arc, pacing, conflict, suspension...in short, all the areas you need to consider if you want to write a good book and have it appeal to an agent or publisher. 


If you would like to use these services, go to Contact and drop me an email. (You an also email me directly at rmsmythe@editors.ca.) That way, you can attach a sample of your writing. By assessing that, I can give you a rough idea of how much help I can provide you.


Remember, to get my help for free, just submit to one of the above-mentioned websites.


Costs for Editing Services


Rates depend on what service you want. For fiction, that ranges from simple proofreading, to copy editing, to line editing, and to developmental editing. I am interested in helping young writers get started, so I charge the low end of each range as specified by the Editorial Freelancers Association. (http://www.the-efa.org/res/rates.php)


Here's a summary of their ranges and what I charge.


Simple proofreading (checking grammar, punctuation, word use)

$2-$3/page 

My fee: $2 per page


Copy editing (proofreading with suggestions for improved sentence structure and word use)

$3-$3.50/page 

My fee: $3 per page


Line editing (substantive copy editing: a wider view, looking for flow of the chapter, echoes, paragraphing, tense, POV issues)

$7-$10/page 

My fee: $5 per page, or $4 if I met you on Critique Circle or Online Writers Workshop

 

Developmental editing (plot, characterization, setting, pacing, POV choice)

Rate is variable according to manuscript's need, but close to line editing

My fee: $6 per page, or $5 if I met you on Critique Circle or Online Writers Workshop


I provide a discount for CC or OWW members if I've seen their work already and expect them to have incorporated some of my suggestions into the latest version of their manuscript so I won't have to say the same thing again. Also, I expect that they will have been critiquing other writers, thereby helping their colleagues get started, too. 


If you wish to see more about typical costs for editing your manuscript, here is a website that discusses the issue: https://jaefiction.wordpress.com/2013/02/05/what-does-editing-cost/


How many pages will your manuscript be? I go by 300 words per page for fiction. (Obviously, there's a range. Pages of dialogue have fewer words than pages with long paragraphs of narrative. The Editorial Freelancers Association uses 250 words/page, but that counts non-fiction, too.)


It is important to me that you understand that hiring an editor isn't cheap. Becoming a professional--a dancer, baseball player, electrician, physicist, doctor, teacher--takes an investment of time, effort, and money. Writing, too. You have to be willing to invest in yourself and your work.


If you are serious about bringing a book up to publishing quality or need help with story development I'd be glad to assist. Contact me using the contact form, or email me directly at  rmsmythe@editors.ca if you have questions.