About Dana

Dana has over thirty years of editing experience (fiction and nonfiction) and has worked with everyone from newbie writers to experienced pros. (You can see a small sampling of the books she's edited on our Portfolio page.) She provides gentle, but honest, feedback. Her goal is to help you shine as a writer and put forth the best product you can. As a writer herself, she is sensitive to how a writer feels when presenting his or her work to an editor for feedback. Rest assured that you will feel supported, energized, and that you have a true partner for your publishing venture.  ​ 

The By Your Side Editing Process

When you contact us, Dana will ask for the following: 

  • The title and genre/subgenre of your project
  • Your target audience
  • The overall word count of your completed* project
  • The entire manuscript*
  • Your deadline 

She'll read through your first five pages (1250 words) to determine which level(s) of service you need. Additionally, she will edit those pages accordingly (free of charge) to provide you with a sample of her work and to see if you both agree on what needs to be done and if you like her style. The sample edit is yours to keep!

Edits are performed in Microsoft Word using Track Changes and Comments. Dana uses the Chicago Manual of Style, Garner's Modern English Usage, and Merriam-Webster as references. 

* If your project is not yet complete, but you would like advice/input regarding it, Dana is happy to consult with you. 


Pricing varies per project and is determined by the overall word count and the level of work required. 

  • Structural consultation: If your project isn't yet complete, but you want to consult with Dana on the overall structure of the project (such as the plot, premise, characters, or GMCs), she can work with you by the hour and will provide you a quote. This is a great option for writers who want to bounce ideas off someone before or during writing or who are stuck at some stage of the writing process and need help getting unblocked. 
  • Developmental editing (see below for what's included; does NOT include line or copy editing): For a developmental editing pass on a completed project, Dana charges .010 a word ($700 for a 70,000 word document). This is a good option for writers who are new, don't already have a strong critique partner, or for any writer who wants to take his or her work to the next level. 
  • Substantive/line editing and copy editing: For two passes that include substantive/line editing and copy editing, Dana's prices range from .019 to .0325 a word ($1330 - $2275 for a 70,000 word document). For most projects, Dana will also recommend a third pass devoted to proofreading.
  • Proofreading: You get the benefit of two sets of eyes (both Dana and Kristine) to squash any remaining typos! Proofreading is .008 per word ($560 for a 70,000 word document) for documents that have been edited by Dana, .012 per word ($840 for a 70,000 word document) for documents that have been professionally edited by someone else, and .016 a word ($1120 for a 70,000 word document) for documents that have NOT been previously edited.  

NOTE: If this is your first book, or the first book that you're having edited, Dana recommends 1-2 developmental editing passes first (the second dev edit pass is prorated), followed by substantive/line editing, followed by a proofreading pass. (This strategy is good for all writers, but more experienced writers may not need a separate pass devoted to developmental editing.) 

Projects that have complex terminology, footnotes, and extensive artwork with captions may cost extra. Should your project's word count increase after you have contacted Dana, she reserves the right to adjust her price quote. 

If you have contracted for anything beyond a consultation, you must provide Dana with your finished project. If you continue to tinker with it after you have handed it off, Dana reserves the right to increase her fee.

What's included in each level of edit?

Developmental editing (aka content editing or story editing)

Assuming you've completed your first draft, Dana will read through your document top to bottom and write up a 1-3 page report on the following areas. She will also make more specific comments in the document itself.  

  • Which areas are strong
  • Which areas need more development (characters, plot, etc.) and some possible ideas/suggestions
  • Notes on overall tone, pacing, writing craft, and terminology (this is not a full edit)
  • Notes on premise and suitability to genre (as needed)
  • Does NOT include substantive/line, copy editing, or proofreading

Substantive editing/line editing (includes copy editing)

This is a line-by-line edit of your work to address the story on a sentence level. This pass includes a copy edit. The following items are included: 

  • Story issues, such as discrepancies in the timeline, character descriptions, plot holes, and so on
  • Style, grammar, usage, and mechanics (spelling, punctuation, and capitalization)
  • Major structural issues are NOT included


If your work has been previously line edited and copy edited, this pass addresses the following: 

  • Grammar, usage, and mechanics (spelling, punctuation, and capitalization)
  • Style, story issues, and structural problems are NOT included

Even if your book has been previously edited, a proofreading pass is highly recommended if your book has been scanned using OCR software. (In such a case, you will need to provide Dana with a print copy of the book for reference.)


Dana recommends contacting her 3-6 months in advance of when you think you'll need her services, since her editing calendar can fill up early. However, feel free to inquire at any time to see if there are openings. 

Cancellation and Rescheduling Policies

 A $300* reservation fee is required for all editing jobs (dev editing, line/copy editing, and proofreading). This fee is due at the time you reserve a space** on the calendar. This fee will be applied to the balance due for the project, provided that you do not cancel or reschedule the project with less than 60 days’ notice. Additionally, if you turn in a project more than two days late, the $300 fee will not be applied to the balance because Dana will have to work significant overtime to keep the project on schedule. If you want to reschedule a project with less than 60 days’ notice, a second reservation fee will be required to secure the new date(s). 

  • * Should the total fee for a project be less than $300, the reservation fee will be $150. 
  • ** If you are reserving multiple blocks of time on the schedule for the same project (for example, dev editing followed by line/copy editing followed by proofreading on the same book), only one reservation fee will be assessed at the time of booking, and it will be applied to the balance due on the final editing stage of the project, provided that the above conditions are met. 

A 50% deposit*** will be due at the time Dana’s work on a project (or project stage) commences, with the remainder due when the project (or project stage) is completed. If you have booked multiple passes on the same project (for example, dev editing followed by line/copy editing followed by proofreading), separate deposits will be assessed for each stage.  

  • *** The reservation fee will be taken into account when calculating the deposit. Should the total fee for a project be less than $300, the reservation fee will act as your deposit. If you have booked a project with multiple stages, the reservation fee will be applied to the deposit for the final stage. 


  • We will send you a PayPal invoice for the reservation fee and any deposits as needed. 
  • The reservation fee does not apply to non-editing work (formatting, book uploading, etc.). 
  • If Dana initiates a change to your project schedule, you will not be required to pay an additional reservation fee.