by Bobbi Temple

If you have sought a Christian editor by posting jobs and making offers but haven’t received a response, try these five smart moves to help you pitch an editor for your Christian book.

Smart Move #1: Ditch the Unreasonable Fears

Maybe your job pitch reveals your fears. Do you believe these things?

Editors will demolish your voice!

Editors will steal your story!

Editors are getting paid too much if you give them more than $1000!

Professional Christian editors have no interest in harming you or your work. We want your hard work to benefit from our corrections.

Smart Move #2: Know Different Editors Exist

Maybe you don’t see the value of what different types of edits can do for your Christian book.

For example, don’t ask for a proofreader and expect improved readability. Don’t ask for a copy editor and expect him or her to spot plot holes.

When a writer asks for an edit like this, we know the writer doesn’t understand the editing process.

Smart Move #3: Prepare Your Best Offer

Perhaps you expect heaps of work for little pay. For instance, don’t offer $200 to edit a 40,000-word manuscript. If you’ve gotten away with this, you’ve taken advantage of someone’s naïveté. For 40,000 words, prepare your offer at or above these 2020 rates instead:

Developmental: $1600 (e.g., You need help with the best order and progression of your non-fiction content.)

Line Edit: $1600 (e.g., Your non-fiction sentences need punch, organization, and clarity.)

Substantive: $2000 (e.g., You suspect your fiction story could be better through development and lines; Your manuscript was rejected.)

Copyedit: $1500 (e.g., Your manuscript contains several errors and needs fact-checking.)

Proofreading: $800 (e.g., Your manuscript needs a final edit.)

Comprehensive Edit: $3000 (A compilation of 2-3 of these services.)

Also, think about the editor’s livelihood. What editor could pay his or her bills with $200 after working for two weeks on your book?

Even Better…

Choose an editor from the Christian PEN and pay the rates on that editor’s website. Did you write a Christian kidlit novel? Contact me at I negotiate payment plans.

You might have no idea what you need, which means you should purchase a manuscript critique. Read more about critiques and coaching in my upcoming article, entitled “To Critique or Not to Critique Your Christian Manuscript.”

Smart Move #4: Stop Worrying

Remember the list of unreasonable fears above? Indie book sales fail because writers fear and ignore the preparation process. But maybe you don’t want to self-publish. In that case, hiring a Christian substantive editor will help your book to get accepted.

Consider these long-term benefits. Hiring the right editor prepares your book to sell because Christian readers like good Christian books. Thorough, professional editing helps your book to contend in Christian award competitions and last through the years as a classic pick. A proper edit will increase your chances of getting offers from Christian publishing houses.

Smart Move #5: Facts You Don’t Need to Add

  • I want an editor to track changes.
  • I want an editor to know my book is my baby.
  • I want an editor to finish in 48 hours.

Essentially this means don’t micromanage the editor. We know how to do our job, plan the scope of the project, and want the best for your precious work of art. In fact, working on your manuscript excites us because you have finished a Christian book and invested in a Christian editor. Smart move.


Bobbie Temple can improve your Christian KidLit storyline. Hire her for critiques, illustrations, or a content edit for picture books to YA and graphic novels at