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Editorial Evaluation and Editorial Services

Editorial Evaluation

What is editorial quality and why is it important?
If I can self-publish my book, then why should I care about its editorial quality?
What is an Editorial Evaluation?
What is the price of an Editorial Evaluation and how do I order it?
Why should I order an Editorial Evaluation?
What if my manuscript doesn't qualify for Editor's Choice after the Editorial Evaluation?
Why didn't the evaluator correct or list all of the errors in my book?
Can I use feedback from my Editorial Evaluation on my back cover or to promote my book?
Can I speak to the evaluator?
What are my editorial evaluator's credentials?

Editorial Services

What is the BISAC code and back cover category? How do I change them?
What are editorial services and why are they important?
What will I receive when my editorial service is finished?
What are my options once I receive my edited manuscript?
How do I order editorial services?
How much do editorial services cost?
Why should I use iUniverse editorial service providers?
May I purchase a lower-priced editorial service than is recommended? I don't want to spend that much money.
If I buy the recommended service, does that guarantee I'll get Editor's Choice?
If my manuscript has been identified as a potential Editor’s Choice title, may I make the recommended changes myself?
Are editorial services available with all of the iUniverse publishing packages?
What about my cover text?

Editorial Evaluation

What is editorial quality and why is it important?

The editorial quality of a book refers to how well the book is written in terms of basic content, style and technical accuracy. No matter how small or big an audience you want to reach, the editorial quality of your work matters.

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If I can self-publish my book, then why should I care about its editorial quality?

Higher editorial quality can give you more credibility as an author, but a book that is filled with errors can hurt an author's reputation. No matter how you publish your book, you've made a promise to your readers that it contains all the elements expected in a professionally published work.

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What is an Editorial Evaluation?

The Editorial Evaluation is a manuscript checkup that assesses your work to be sure it has fulfilled the basic requirements of a published book. The editorial evaluator will not only provide you with a general overview of your manuscript, but also offer feedback on how to write a better book—on what works and what doesn't. If needed, the evaluator will prescribe an Editorial Rx Referral to an Editorial Specialist who can help you continue to improve your manuscript. Books that receive a favorable Editorial Evaluation will qualify for the Editor's Choice program.

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What is the price of an Editorial Evaluation and how do I order it?

If purchased separately, an iUniverse Editorial Evaluation costs $599, which is far below industry standard costs for an editorial review. An Editorial Evaluation is included in all publishing packages except for our Select publishing package; however, you can simply order the Editorial Evaluation option as an add-on service when you submit your publishing order. Authors with existing iUniverse Select titles can also elect to submit their books for an Editorial Evaluation and republish a new edition. Contact your Check-In Coordinator for details.

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Why should I order an Editorial Evaluation?

You've worked hard to get your manuscript written, and it's even harder to evaluate your own work. An Editorial Evaluation may be the only objective opinion you get before your book is available to the general public. An independent evaluation is critical to successfully establishing and maintaining a credible public image—whether it's with friends, family, colleagues, or book lovers anywhere.

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What if my manuscript doesn't qualify for Editor's Choice after the Editorial Evaluation?

We don't just tell you what's amiss; iUniverse provides you with the tools and service providers needed to make your book the best it can be—a quality work that meets professional standards across the board. You can do the work yourself, use your own editorial service provider, or purchase the services of one of our carefully selected publishing professionals—the choice is yours. All of the recommendations are just that—you have complete control and can follow the suggestions made or ignore them. At iUniverse, the author always has the last word.

What's most important to remember is that this is not a pass/fail program. Just because a book doesn't make Editor's Choice doesn't mean it's not worthy of publication or that it won't be successful. There are countless stories of books that were turned down at 25 publishing houses and then became bestsellers.

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Why didn't the evaluator correct or list all of the errors in my book?

The Editorial Evaluation is not a replacement for an iUniverse editorial service. Rather, it is a preliminary diagnostic tool used to pinpoint areas in need of improvement. The evaluator will provide you with a general overview of your manuscript, offering examples of items that could be strengthened, and give critique and commentary across a range of topics, and if needed, suggest you consider working with an Editorial Specialist, such as a line editor, who can edit your manuscript line by line, giving it the professional polish that you'd get at major publishing houses.

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Can I use feedback from my Editorial Evaluation on my back cover or to promote my book?

No. The purpose of the Editorial Evaluation is to provide advice and suggestions on how your book can be improved and how you can strengthen your writing skills. The guidance and feedback you receive is not intended to be an endorsement and may not be used for promotional purposes of any kind. Keep in mind that using text from an editor who has worked on your book presents a conflict of interest and is discouraged in the publishing community.

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Can I speak to the evaluator?

Confidentiality is essential for an atmosphere of professional honesty. Just as we protect our authors' privacy by prohibiting our evaluators from disclosing information from any Editorial Evaluation, we likewise do not disclose our evaluators' identities. Maintaining this confidential relationship allows our evaluators to provide straightforward, honest feedback. Our contract with our evaluators requires us to keep their identities private, so we can't allow an author to personally speak with his evaluator. If you have brief questions regarding your evaluation, your Check-In Coordinator can forward them to the editorial department, who will share your concerns with the evaluator, if appropriate, and respond to you in a timely fashion.

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What are my Editorial Evaluator's credentials?

Our evaluators are experienced book-publishing professionals, including editors, literary agents and book reviewers. They are not only knowledgeable about the levels of editorial services needed to give a book a professional polish but well-informed about what's needed to be successful in a competitive marketplace. Most importantly, we give you customized advice, not a generic form letter.

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Editorial Services

What is a BISAC code and back cover category? How do I change them?

The BISAC (Book Industry Standards and Communications) code helps booksellers determine the primary subject or focus of a book. Notice the different sections of your local bookstore to see some of the existing classifications, for example, science fiction, literature, romance, self-help, cookbooks and history.

The back cover category is a label placed on the back cover of your book that provides more detailed classification information that is easily accessible to a potential buyer. For example, a back cover category will give a reader browsing the science fiction shelves an easy way to differentiate between a book on time travel and a space-opera novel.

Contact your Publishing Services Associate if you want to change your book's BISAC code or back cover category.

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What are editorial services and why are they important?

Traditional publishing houses have several editors working on each title. iUniverse offers a full range of editorial services so that self-published authors can take advantage of the improvements that an Editorial Specialist, such as a copy editor or developmental editor, can make to a manuscript. Quality matters—to book agents, editors, booksellers and, most importantly, to the reader. If a book is good, a reader will tell a friend or colleague, and word-of-mouth, the best sales tool for any product, will begin.

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What will I receive when my editorial service is finished?

  • Your edited manuscript. This copy of your manuscript will contain all the revisions made by your editor appearing as tracked changes and comments in the Microsoft Word document. Please note that you must have access to Microsoft Word in order to be able to see and respond to these revisions. If you need assistance with the tracked changes feature, you may contact our department at editorial@iuniverse.com, or you may reach our Customer Support department at 1-800-AUTHORS (288-4677), ext. 5045.
  • A letter from your editor regarding the edited manuscript you have just received. That letter will describe the service and provide you with other useful information. [Note: Our Book Doctor services typically do not include letters to the author.]

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What are my options once I receive my edited manuscript?

  • You may choose to make revisions to your manuscript yourself based on the suggestions of our editors via tracked changes.
  • If you have purchased a Core Editing Service (Copyediting, Line Editing, Content Editing), then you have the option of purchasing our Editorial Assistant service to make the revisions in the manuscript for you. Please note that you, the author, will often need to provide further specific responses to the edit before the Editorial Assistant service may proceed.
  • If you have purchased a Developmental Edit, then you have the option of purchasing our Book Doctor service, which will takes the suggestions made during the Developmental Edit and implements them. Please note that you, the author, will often need to provide further specific responses to the edit before the Book Doctor service may proceed.

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If you choose to make the revisions yourself, the end result of your revisions should be a manuscript that has no tracked changes or comments visible in the manuscript. Once you have this clean and finalized version of your manuscript ready, send it back to us, and we'll move you to the next step of publication!

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How do I order editorial services?

Your Editorial Evaluation will determine which book editing service is right for your book. To order editorial services, use your myUniverse account or speak with your editorial consultant. If you have any questions about the different services we offer, our editorial consultants can help guide you through them.

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How much do editorial services cost?

Editorial services fees are charged on a per-word basis. Most editors charge by the hour, leaving you dependent upon their work speed. Our fees are charged per word so you know exactly what you're getting into. For higher-level services such as a book doctoring or ghostwriting, we give you a firm estimate before an editor starts work on your manuscript, and we guarantee that price. By using iUniverse service providers, you know you're getting qualified book editors at affordable, industry-standard prices. There are no surprises.

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Why should I use iUniverse editorial service providers?

iUniverse editorial service providers have extensive experience in book publishing, so you are eliminating the risk of using amateurs who can charge a fortune for bad services. Moreover, our in-house editors double-check the work done by our freelance staff to make sure it conforms to our high standards of editorial quality.

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May I purchase a lower-priced editorial service than is recommended? I don't want to spend that much money.

At iUniverse, the author has complete editorial control over the manuscript, but sometimes a book is still in the draft stage and not ready for certain services. Moreover, as with most products and services, the rule "you get what you pay for" may apply. Purchasing a lower editorial service than what your Editorial Evaluation recommends means that the editorial quality of your book will probably not be the best it can be. And because a manuscript with higher editorial quality can translate into an enhanced reputation and increased marketability for your book—as is the case for Editor's Choice books—the extra cost might just pay for itself.

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If I buy the recommended service, does that guarantee I'll get Editor's Choice?

After carefully considering your manuscript, your evaluator will let us know whether your book has the potential to be an Editor's Choice book. As in traditional publishing, manuscripts with potential often still need the assistance of an editor, such as a copy editor or line editor. If we see Editor's Choice potential in your manuscript, we will share this information with you when you receive your completed Editorial Evaluation. If you choose to purchase the editorial service indicated in your Editorial Rx Referral and make the necessary revisions, we will work with you to bring your manuscript to the level of Editor's Choice.

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If my manuscript has been identified as a potential Editor’s Choice title, may I make the recommended changes myself?

If you decide to revise your manuscript on your own and want to be considered for Editor's Choice, we require a second evaluation of your book to allow us to review the changes you have made. Keep in mind, however, that if your second evaluation still identifies the need for professional editorial assistance, we will ask that you consider working with an Editorial Specialist to be eligible for Editor's Choice or, if you choose, simply move to publication.

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Are editorial services available with all of the iUniverse publishing packages?

Editorial services are available after an Editorial Evaluation, which is included in all publishing packages except for the Select package. But, you can purchase an Editorial Evaluation, line editing, and indexing as add-on services.

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What about my cover text?

If you have not already done so, you may wish to update the marketing text (author biography, back cover copy, etc.) that you provided during the online submission process. You may resubmit that to us either as a separate Word document or pasted into the body of an e-mail. If you need another copy of the text that you provided during submission, please contact the editorial department (editorial@iuniverse.com) or customer support (customersupport@iuniverse.com) to request a copy.

Please note:If you have the Cover Copy Polish service either as a part of your package or purchased separately, please submit all final marketing text prior to entering the Cover Copy Polish service.Once the service has begun, we will be unable to accept additional marketing text without further charges.

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Please note: iUniverse accepts a very low margin of error in each completed edit – no more than three percent of the total errors found. Our professional in-house editorial staff reviews each editorial service for quality assurance. Upon reviewing your edited manuscript, if you believe that an unsatisfactory number of errors remain, please create a list of the errors and the page numbers on which they appear, and email the list to editorial at iuniverse.com. We will review the list with you and address your concern.