"The difference between the almost right word and the right word is . . . the difference between the lightning bug and the lightening."
Although Mark is a full-time Professional Writing instructor, he is available to edit fiction and nonfiction book manuscripts during the summer months. His 16+ years within the Christian publishing industry (and specifically behind the editor's desk) have helped Mark understand how to improve manuscripts so that they shine in quality and relevance.
Mark's editorial pen isn't for the faint-hearted. If you're looking primarily for words of praise, then this isn't the service for you. But if you're ready to courageously tackle the hard truths of disjointed structure, lack of focus, weak characters, fragmented plots, and unnatural dialogue, then Mark is ready to help.
The process begins with a free consultation and manuscript evaluation. You'll complete an author questionnaire that will help Mark analyze your current status within the editorial and publications process.
Mark specializes in the following types of editorial services:
developmental / substantive editing
After the personal consultation, Mark will provide a quote for his editorial services. If you agree to the quoted price, Mark will then perform a complimentary edit before any contract is agreed to.
During the editing process, you'll find that Mark is much more than simply an outstanding editor. He is a teacher and mentor that will guide you into knowing how to improve your own writing and editing skills. You'll appreciate his insightful questions, astute analysis, and comprehensive revision.
Yet, through it all, Mark will maintain your personal style and even guide you into knowing how to best prepare your manuscript for agent or publisher submission.
If you don't yet have a completed manuscript, Mark is still able to provide coaching advice.
In fact, Mark has often given some of his best advice to those who are only beginning their manuscript. Why? Because it is at that point that authors are able to most effectively restructure their outlines to meet reader expectations and publisher objectives.
Too often, authors have a great story to tell or information to share, but don't focus on their specific target audience, fail to connect emotionally with readers, ignore standard genre lengths, misunderstand publisher requirements, and a host of other elements that beginning writers never even consider.
Again, you will find in Mark a servant's heart that sincerely wants you to influence others through your words. To accomplish this, Mark will provide a free personal consultation to gauge where you're at in the writing process.
Together, you and Mark will create a plan of how to achieve specific and measurable outcomes toward your stated goals. And then, when life gets in the way of your progress, Mark will be there to provide accountability and encouragement to keep you on track.
If your manuscript is complete, congratulations! Your dream of publication seems as if it might finally become a reality. With the writing and editing phase behind you, you might think you can now coast the rest of the way through the publishing process. Unfortunately, that's not the case.
Most authors don't understand how to properly and professionally submit their manuscript to a literary agent or publisher. (And remember—you only get one chance to make a first impression.)
The key to helping the agent or editor recognize the value of your manuscript is to develop an effective book proposal. From Mark's experience as a publishing editor, at least 50% of authors fail to include or properly structure the necessary components of the book proposal. As a result, these authors are quickly rejected.
But that doesn't have to be you.
Contact Mark for publishing guidance and advice. He will help you develop a thorough book proposal that exceeds publisher expectations. Remember, publishers—even Christian publishers—must generate revenue through the sale of their books. By helping publishers see the value of your manuscript, you give yourself the best possible chance of receiving a book contract.