Short work: one pagers & short stuff (up to 5000 words)
Longer work: (longer than 5000 words)
A story to tell runs regular writing courses for anyone wanting to improve their writing. Please click here for: Writers need words (a half-day course designed to spill ideas onto the page) or here for: Way with words (a four-hour course — over two separate sessions — designed to improve your writing for work).
Unless otherwise arranged, a 50% deposit is required for all manuscript appraisals with the balance to be paid prior to return of your manuscript.
Courses are to be paid for in full to secure your booking. Payment will not be returned for cancellations in the week prior to the course. Cancellations more than one week before the course, will receive a 50% refund. If you can find someone to take your place on the course, we’d really appreciate it.
Writing and editing for organisations, businesses and individuals is charged as quoted and invoiced monthly.
When you write anything beyond a few pages, it can be hard to see what’s going on in your work. You’re too close to it. We think of structural editing as the great untangler.
A structural edit (also known as substantive edit) will identify and analyse broad story elements in your novel, short story, essay, memoir or other long-form work. Structural editors look at narrative arc, characterisation, voice, themes and point of view choices. We check for important elements missing or areas that might be improved to enhance the story. We ask questions about believability, connections and consistencies.
A substantive edit is useful early in the drafting process. It’s no use crafting lovely sentences and creating fabulous characters only to discover that they just don’t seem to fit!
The copy editing process makes sure your website, book, brochure or letter says what you think it says. Copy editors ask questions of the author to ensure that each word, sentence and paragraph is organised as clearly as possible. Among other things, experienced copy editors ask: can this sentence be expressed more concisely? Will the intended audience engage with these words? Does the reader have all that they need?
Copy editing is more than a final pass-through. If your work is almost ready and just needs a fresh set of eyes to check for easily-overlooked errors, you’ll need a proofreader.
Copy writing is simply the writing of copy on behalf of other people. Freelance writers do it every day of our working lives. It pays to employ an excellent listener with a passion for words and an excellent command of English. Effective copywriters also understand the importance of catchy headlines, bold opening paragraphs and finding a strong angle for your news story. Beyond the headlines, your copywriter needs to maintain your readers’ interest until the end and finish with a memorable flourish.
Proofreading is a final glance over your work before publishing. It might be web text, a series of blogs, or your self-published book. Proofreaders check for spelling, punctuation and grammar errors and generally make the changes for you. Sometimes, editors will flag the errors and the writer makes the changes.
Even if you’re an accomplished writer, if your reputation matters, it’s worth planning ahead and investing in a proofreader. We invested in proofreading for this site – I hope it shows!
We got this question on our first copywriting bid and we have to admit we were stuck for words! Many, many words later here’s our reply …
Communication matters. Engaging someone who respects your story and is curious about how best to tell it is a smart investment. Great writers and editors ensure your material is consistent and that the content, language, style and structure suits the intended purpose and audience.
On a more personal note: we know words. We appreciate and understand the rhythm of words and love creating stories. Call us nerds, but we also love grammar … enjoy experimenting with it just as much as knowing the rules. We regularly read, attend workshops and webinars to keep both my concrete and creative skills strong and current.
Didn’t find your answer in our frequently asked questions?
Please contact us to find out more. At A story to tell no question is too naive and curiosity is valued.