Manuscript Editing Services

Looking for help getting your manuscript ready for submission or publication? I offer the following types of editing services:

JodyKihara_EditingStructural editing – critique

Structural editing focuses on the ‘bigger picture’ elements of your book: plot, character, pacing, logic, voice, etc. After reading your work, I will provide suggestions on how any of these might be improved; it is then up to you which of these edits you choose to make.

Copy editing and proofreading

JodyKihara_ProofreadingCopy editing focuses on sentence-level editing, such as tightening up your sentence structure, fixing repetitions and inconsistencies, and correcting grammatical, word usage, spelling, and punctuation mistakes. A ‘proofreading only’ option is also available, where I do not make any edits to your writing style; only errors are corrected.

Manuscript Formatting

E-readerPreparing your manuscript for print publication or e-book conversion? Manuscript formatting includes setting up the cover page, fonts, paragraph styles, chapter headings, table of contents, headers/footers, page numbering, footnotes/endnotes, and (this is important for e-books!) making sure there are no hidden ‘bugs’ in the document’s code.  I can also convert your manuscript to .epub, .mobi, .html, or .prc format (for upload to


Fees are on a per-hour basis, as no two books will take the same amount of time to edit. All services are US$35/hour; the points below will help you estimate your budget:

  • For structural editing, an 80,000 word book usually takes between 5 and 10 hours to read and provide feedback.
  • For copy editing, the length of time depends on how many corrections there are. If you send me a 2-3 pages of your manuscript, I can provide a more accurate estimate.
  • For manuscript formatting, an 80,000 word manuscript usually takes between 2 and 5 hours, depending on its intended destination (e-book, print, etc.) and complexity (illustrations, index, etc.). If you send me the manuscript, I can give you a more precise estimate.


Here are some examples of structural editing critique:

  • Pacing: chapters 5 and 6 are a bit slow; suggest combining these into one chapter. Also, cutting down the lengthy descriptions will speed up the action.
  • Logic: Jim mentions the newspaper article in Chapter 2, but in fact he doesn’t read it until Chapter 3. The plot would also be tighter if he goes to the police because of the article; currently the two are unrelated.
  • Character: the character of Lucy could be fleshed out more; the reader is left wondering why the house is so important to her. Does she have some childhood connection to it? If so, Chapter 2 would be a good place to work this in.
  • Plot: we understand why the gang is making Jim go through the initiation, but what if this were tied to their covering up the crime? If they have an ulterior motive for the initiation – making Jim a suspect – this will increase the tension.
  • Description: the descriptions in Chapter 7 are great; in fact the reader needs more of these! There has been a lot of build-up to this moment, so the reader needs to see the house clearly. As Lucy walks through each room, what does she see, hear, smell? Does this trigger memories for her?

This is what copy editing looks like:

  • Before: Jim ran up the steep windy staircase; almost tripping when he got to the top it was so dark. If only he remembered to bring the flash light! He stopped and waited for his eyes to get used to the dark. ‘Jan? ” He called out.
  • After: Jim ran up the steep, winding staircase, almost tripping when he reached the dark landing. If only he’d brought the flashlight! He paused, waiting for his eyes to adjust. “Jan?” he called out.

Image: copy editing


“Jody Kihara’s editing services surpassed my expectations. To have a published author edit my manuscript was gold; to have a published author provide such detailed revision recommendations and support was platinum. Jody was very thorough and was very responsive to email inquiries throughout development. It was obvious that she viewed my work not only with the eyes of an editor, but with the eyes of the reader, and mentor. I would highly recommend anyone with a passion for becoming published to seek out Jody Kihara – you will  be happy you made the effort.”
Thomas Albert, “The Extra Mile

“I hired Jody to copy edit a children’s book that consisted of two stories and other text. I got a high quality product that exceeded the fee she charged. Jody provided excellent, detailed and timely feedback with respect to the mechanics of the writing, as well as significant ideas for revising the stories. Her editorial and creative feedback were a critically important contribution to the project. I would hire her again and recommend her highly.”
Vernon Jackman – author, publisher, and instructor

“As a researcher and investigator, my talents lay outside the field of creative writing and literature. Jody was helped me to transform my rough manuscript into a finished project ready to submit to the publishers. She is very talented!”
Vincenzo Macrino – author and researcher

You can email me to discuss your project or request a quote.
All inquiries will be treated confidentially.