Private Editing – Working with Individual Clients

On written pieces

I work with individual clients on their specific and bespoke goals. I only work on fictional material or that associated with the literary arts – and that which I feel an affinity with as it is important to me that I feel motivated and interested in your work. Perhaps you want my support on that novel that you are still working on, or finished and want it looking over, a short story or a collection of short stories, or your poetry.

The work can be done as a mixture of one to one meet up sessions and non contact work done via email – or the whole commission can be non contact via email. In this way I’ve been able to successfully work with clients both in my geographical area and also those in other locations internationally – with no bars to the process.

On page to stage/spoken word pieces

With clients that have been able to work with me ‘live’ I can also offer work on spoken word pieces and bringing performance aspects to work for public reading/open mic/stage. In this type of work attention is given to the voice, body, use of space, gaze – as well as the work itself and how it conveys, the pace, rhythm etc.

Services and Fees:

A one to one meet up session (if you are unable to meet due to location this does not apply): working with the client is costed at £20 for a 60 minute period.

Non-contact work (editing/advising via emailed documents etc): is costed at £12 for a 60 minutes period. Times are noted and billed only for the time period worked.

Non contact work includes: copy editing, proof reading, editing, advising on the presentation of the work: punctuation/grammar etc and also the creative flow of the piece: vocabulary, sentence structure, sequence, overarching premise – trajectory and conclusion, character development, point of view (ie voice to carry the work), sequence, time frame etc.

Clients should bear in mind that working with a large project takes detail and time and the editing process is not done in one sweep over.

Editing for All

For clients for who English is not their first language or who may have certain bars to writing fluently then I can also help with the copy editing process – meaning that they do not have to write completely fluently to have my editing services. However, if the fluency in the work is good and requires little or no copy editing and if this is so throughout the work then it makes my job all the swifter, allowing me to read through to absorb the story and then make notes on the creative arc of the work: vocabulary, sentence structure, sequence, overarching premise – trajectory and conclusion, character development, point of view (ie voice to carry the work), sequence, time frame etc.

Clients need to keep in mind that after the first wave of editing is completed they may then need to send it back again after they have made any changes – so that I can look over those revised parts. In most works it is highly likely there are copy editing points to address after the first wave process of creative editing and then that would incur further time/charges.

Payment

Payment is made by cash, cheque, Paypal or bank transfer.

When editing long works then an advance payment of half the estimated amount is asked for before starting work upon it. I would then verify that I had received payment and begin work. You would then receive weekly updates from me on times I had worked and amount of pages read and the money ‘used’ from the deposit amount. When I would reach the end of reading your work I would compile my notes, give a final account of time taken in the whole project and the exact amount left to pay and then you would pay any final balance and I would send the work.

If interested in my services

Do please contact me by email at: freewriterscentre@gmail.com to discuss your individual editing requirements.

About Linda Cleary

See my short biography here for all info: http://www.freewriterscentre.org/freewriterscentre/about-us/

Testimonials from Previous Private Clients

From Mirette Bahgat: I got introduced to Linda Cleary through the creative writing retreats she conducted back in Egypt. It was an amazing experience. Linda had this charm and special way of helping me to tap into my creative energy. She was also very responsive and encouraging after the retreat and was available to provide editing and feedback on my short stories. When I took my writing to the next level and started publishing my short stories, I contacted Linda to do creative editing for my work, and she never failed me. For a very reasonable fee, she provided copy editing and creative editing as well. She was also connecting me with potential sources of publishing and providing me with references when needed. The whole process was very organized and done in good time, and I will definitely continue my work relationship with her.

Mirette Bahgat is a short story writer based in Cairo, Egypt. Her work has appeared in various publications, including The Huffington Post and Arab Spring Dreams: The Next Generation speaks out for Freedom and Justice. In 2009, she was awarded The European Institute of the Mediterranean writing award. She was also awarded the American University Madalyn Lamont literary award in 2016. Her story ‘Exodus’ was shortlisted for Short Story Day Africa contest in 2016. She holds an MA in political science from the American University in Cairo.

From Iman Refaat: It was a pleasure working with Linda when she was editing my novel. Even though I’d been worried about the virtual experience and not having face to face contact with my editor during the process, she made the whole experience smooth, enjoyable and relaxing. I admired her transparency, her punctuality and her organisational skills. After receiving her edits on my first draft I felt lost on where to start however turning to her for help she gave me clear and effective instructions on how to implement the changes. She was by my side in every step and her support gave me confidence that I would succeed in finalising my book. Her feedback and comments were very smart and reflected her wide experience and deep understanding of literature and writing.

She facilitated the payment in instalments and was kind and patient when I faced troubles in proceeding with the payment due to political problems we were facing in Egypt. Moreover, she was truly generous supporting me with a discount after the rate of Egyptian currency fluctuated.

The experience of editing my novel with Linda was one of the stages I enjoyed in my “Fabulous Veils” journey. She was encouraging, focused, straightforward and dedicated to my best interest.

I highly recommend Linda as an editor. Even with people who freak from distance communication like me.

The link to the Facebook page for my novel Fabulous Veils is: https://www.facebook.com/fabulousveils/

The novel Fabulous Veils by Iman Refaat is available to buy in Diwan Stores in Egypt: https://www.diwanegypt.com/

and on Amazon and Kindle internationally:

https://www.amazon.co.uk/Fabulous-Veils-Inspired-Egyptian-Everyday/dp/9779044477

From Lucia Oliveira: I met Linda 2 years ago in Cairo when I decided to have fun with my imagination while writing. Well, the fact is that something more than that happened. Linda’s creative writing course enabled my unspoken ideas to have a shape. The writing courses are so well designed in time and contents that it allowed me to balance my work with my newly found hobby. And I still pursue it. First in live classes and now online courses. The communication regarding how the courses will follow as well as the fees are very clear and fair. Materials are brought into class or sent by email. Every exercise is explained and home assignments are to be taken seriously. The communication regarding the creative work itself is organized and disciplined; this is important to produce our ideas into written form, to which Linda enables. The editing of the pieces reviewed are not only that, they are also comments to improve our writing skills and corrections. Linda’s editing is critical and it can be more if we, the students, are ready to accept it to improve. Then, it is just a matter of letting it flow, our imagination, the inspiration given by the course, the production of the pieces and the final critical result provided by Linda.

Lucia Oliveira is Director of Action Against Hunger in Egypt https://www.actionagainsthunger.org/blog/action-against-hunger-begins-work-egypt Creative writing is now also part of Lucia’s humanitarian and development work in the form of using creative written language to add to the programmes of Action Against Hunger in health, nutrition, water and livelihoods.

From Dina Leheta: I was searching in bookstores in Cairo, Egypt leafing through the first pages of the books written in the English language by Egyptian authors like myself in an effort to find an editor for my first novel when I came across the name of Linda’s center for editing and other literary services: freewriterscentre.org

It was of great benefit and pleasure working with Linda to prepare my novel for publication. She turned every stage of the editing process into a learning experience. One of the major reasons I had procrastinated in getting my novel published was my apprehension regarding the editing process and the potential harm it could do to my fragile self confidence as a new writer as well as my budding love of writing, especially since I am writing in a language of which I am not a native speaker. Looking back now, I wish I had known Linda earlier and not had to waste so much time being scared. Working with her via email, I got to experience firsthand how editing can become an eye-opening, developmental and at many times enjoyable process of learning and growth instead of a much-dreaded necessary evil that has to encountered on the rough road to publication.

The right choice for an editor, I believe, is not just based on technical capabilities but equally important is the capability to show the way to good writing and an interesting story without making it look like it is too arduous and endless. The right editor is the one who is able to make the sometimes painful process of making changes and even rewriting parts of the story feel like it is something you want to do and eventually feel glad you have had to go through rather than something you must do, and that is exactly what Linda did for me.

Linda helped me with her warm and supportive coaching style and her admirable work ethic and dedication to her work was clearly evident from the first day I started working with her. She was punctual in sending update reports and detailed orientation as well as her willingness to go out of her way even financially (by giving me discounts) to help me finish my book and get it ready for publication. She showed belief in me even though we had never met face to face and the professionalism and lucidity of her comments allowed me to see the immense benefits of professional editing. I greatly appreciate the way she helped me work gradually and calmly through my novel from revising my plot and developing my characters to learning how to write better and imbue my story with rich descriptive details without ever making me lose confidence or steam or feel that my writing is wanting, an ability that I think is priceless for all writers but especially novices.

I hope that my first novel which is yet to be published turns out to be only the beginning of a long and successful editing relationship with Linda. Linda, I know I have said it before many times but I feel the need to say it again here: thank you very much for making me look forward to getting my next novel finished and ready for editing.

Dina Leheta has just completed her first novel, set in Alexandria, Egypt, which will be published shortly. More details soon.

*More testimonials to follow

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