Developmental Editing

Posted by Kristen Hamilton on June 21, 2015 at 1:40 PM

Developmental editing looks at the book as a whole and focuses on improving character development, overall story structure (including fixing loose ends), pacing, perspective, narrative style, and your story’s organization.

During the developmental editing process, I add material (enough, but not so much as to compromise your writing) to fill in the holes as necessary, and delete material (this varies from sentences to paragraphs to large chunks of text, depending on the content and whether that material is relevant to the overall story).


Developmental editing focuses on:

    • Momentum and pacing
    • Plot consistency
    • Overall structure/structural choices
    • Story organization
    • Tying up loose ends
    • Tone and voice
    • Tense issues
    • Point of view and narrative perspective
    • “Showing” versus “telling”
    • Deleting superfluous material
    • Adding material where necessary (setting description, character development, dialogue)


While other editing services (line editing and proofreading) will get you a beautifully written book, only developmental editing will get you a properly developed storyline—which will appeal to your readers.

What This Includes:

I take the editor-author relationship seriously, and I’m in your corner to help your book succeed. I’m here to make sure you are as prepared as possible to succeed in this saturated industry, and that means pumping you full of knowledge and resources (in addition to superb editing!) to ensure your book stands the best chance for success, especially against less prepared authors.


Every à la carte editing service includes:


    • Unlimited e-mail support: If you have questions about your book, the publishing industry or simply would like advice or feedback, feel free to send away!
    • Unlimited phone support: If you prefer phone calls, let’s talk! Send me an email anytime and we will schedule a quick phone call to chat.
    • Editor’s Report: This 1-page letter I write after editing your book highlights the most common issues I found during editing, and is geared toward showing you how to avoid your most common writing mistakes to become a better writer. 
    • Unlimited advertising: I regularly post blogs and Facebook videos teaching about writing and commonly refer to my clients’ work as examples (possibly including yours, in the future!). Every week I share pictures, links, and reviews of books I have edited, and am always happy to help promote books I’ve edited in some capacity. When it comes to marketing your work, every little bit helps, and I’m so proud to share, show off, and talk about books I’ve edited.

Once your overall story, pacing, tone and voice, etc. are taken care of in the developmental editing process, I always recommend line editing (focus on improving sentence structure, logic, consistency, and clarity) and proofreading (final check for surface errors including spelling, punctuation, grammar, and word choice) prior to getting your manuscript published. Developmental editing is one of the services included in The Ultimate editing package.


Please read my guide for information on sample edits, editing packages, rush project options, and the scheduling process.


Questions? Ready to get on the schedule? Contact me!

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