Are your words worth two cents?

Two cents per word.

That's all. No complicated menu of a la carte services, just one low price.

You can find book doctors who'll charge more, if you're one of those people who like to pay more. I'm just embarking on this new adventure and maybe someday I can ask for oodles of money to share my expertise, but right now, at a penny a word, you'll be getting a proven writer with a proven track record to help strengthen your story ... and make it marketable.

We'll have a written contract that clearly addresses your deadlines, costs and expectations. The work will be done when you want it done.

So how does that work out, cash-wise? That math is easy (and we know how writers are with math). The average manuscript page has about 250 words, so you can expect to pay roughly $5 a page. The average 70,000-word manuscript costs $1,400.

And what will you get for two cents a word? I'll send you an edited manuscript and a professionally prepared written report outlining the strengths and weaknesses in your story, with suggestions on how you might re-work, re-arrange and re-imagine it to greater effect. The complexity and extent of the report will depend entirely upon your story itself. And if you want to talk more about it on the phone after you've gotten your report, we'll do that, too. Free.

Is your manuscript ready for my help? if so, email me at franscellr(at)aol(dot)com today and let's get started! The people with whom you'll be competing for readers' attention aren't waiting.

Spot the typo and get 25% off editing services!

Love discounts as much as good books? Then you're gonna love this deal!

If you can spot a typo in the latest editions of any of Ron's books, we'll offer a 25% discount on editing services. What does that mean? Well, if your manuscript is a typical 70,000 words, that's a whopping $350 savings on Ron's two cents-a-word editing services! Here's what you do:
1. Get your hands on any of Ron's latest ebook or hard-copy editions ... ANGEL FIRE, THE DEADLINE, THE DARKEST NIGHT, DELIVERED FROM EVIL, SOURTOE COCKTAIL CLUB, or any of his CRIME BUFF'S GUIDE books ...

2. Find a typo. Any typo.

3. Email Ron at franscellr [at] aol [dot] com with your discovery and claim your discount!

That's it! What better way to show that everybody needs an editor? Yep, even editors.

Praise from a NYTimes bestseller!

"My first editor at HarperCollins was top-notch. My second editor at Dutton was a class act. Both were unquestionably AAA. But it wasn’t until I found Ron Franscell that I made it to the Big Leagues. For the past several years, Ron has been my editor on everything from several page articles, and press releases, to a complete edit and revision of my 800-page, true-crime book, Black Dahlia Avenger: A Genius for Murder. Ron’s trial-by-fire and street cred as a veteran journalist and bestselling author have given him the know-how and eye to edit without changing the author’s voice. A rare gift! He gets five stars. There is good, there is better, and then there is Ron Franscell—The Best."
New York Times bestselling author of BLACK DAHLIA AVENGER
Los Angeles, Calif.

If you're looking for an affordable, professional editor, 
email Ron at

The Seven Deadly Sins of Self-Editing

So you think you can edit your own manuscript? Well, that's not only a bad idea, it's also
evidence you're not yet a professional writer. Pros know the tricks your eyes and brains can play when reading your own work, and they know outside help is invaluable at spotting typos and bigger issues in a story.

Don't believe me? This article (courtesy of Writer's Digest) explores the "Seven Deadly Sins of Self-Editing." Read it, child ... and sin no more.


We’re most likely to sin when we’re at our most vulnerable—and for creative writers, there may be no more vulnerable time than the delicate (and often excruciating) process of editing our own work. Sidestep these too-common traps, and keep your story’s soul pure.
by Janice Gable Bashman & Kathryn Craft

1. Greed

Many authors damn their efforts from the start with a premature focus on snagging a lucrative book deal. They submit to agents or self-publish before their work is truly ready. But building a career requires that you lay a strong foundation of only your best work—and nobody’s first draft is the best it can be. Careful editing is the mortar that holds the story bricks together.
Penance: Resist the temptation to convince yourself your first draft is “good enough.” If you find yourself rushing your editing process just to leap ahead to pursuing publication, look for deeper motivation to sustain you. Remember that the revision process doesn’t have to be any less enjoyable than the writing itself: You’ll be setting out to find the magic in each word, sentence, paragraph. You’ll be tapping your creative soul for ways to add tension to every page, to find clever solutions to tough story problems. Greed looks toward the uncertain rewards of tomorrow. The joys of writing are available to you today.


2. Lust

Just as dangerous as the temptation to call your first draft “finished” can be the tendency to jump into a revision right away. Words and ideas flood your mind; emotions pump through your heart. But that mad creative rush can become excessive, harming your ability to clearly assess your writing.
Penance: Step away from your current project as long as you can bear it—then wait an additional week. You’ll need that emotional distance before you revisit your work.


3. Gluttony

A great novel is like a gourmet meal. It must be prepared carefully, and to specification, with complementary flavors and courses.
Getting carried away and stuffing in all the good ideas and beautiful word pairings you’ve got in your pantry can lead to overindulgence.
Penance: Put your manuscript on a diet. Pare down or eliminate scenes that don’t further the story. Examine plot points, characters, description, dialogue and exposition, until you have precisely what you need to tell your story, and not a character or subplot more. Then apply this same philosophy to your work at the sentence level, killing your darlings and eliminating excessive adjectives and adverbs, along with verbose descriptions. Bring out the flavor of both your story and your style, but stop short of overseasoning.


4. Pride

Even in the current age of publishing, where aspiring authors can and must act as their own publicists and webmasters and take on myriad other roles, editing is one thing you can’t complete alone. As a form of communication, writing needs an audience. Thinking you don’t need feedback from others isn’t just pride—it’s pride that can squelch your potential.
Penance: Seek the help of beta readers, critique groups and editors. In return for the valuable feedback you receive, share your growing skills by critiquing the works of other participants in return. Then take your humble approach a step further and volunteer at writing conferences, libraries or literacy programs. Start a neighborhood book club, a regional networking group or a listserv for writers. Read widely and blog about it. The more you support the literary community, the more likely it will support you.


5. Sloth

The lazy scribe is one who’s failed to develop and utilize all her natural talents. To draft a story—and then stop there—is to ignore the very nature of literature, which constructs meaning through the deft layering of craft elements. If you find yourself bucking that notion, you may be guilty of sloth.
Penance: Just like with physical exercise, whipping your talent into shape takes time and dedication. You don’t jog once a year and end up with a perfect body. So it goes with your manuscript. To build the endurance skills you’ll need for marathon writing and revision, you must continuously train: Do writing prompts. Do writing exercises. Keep your writing muscles toned through daily practice, and when you review your previous work, your mistakes and weak sections will become more apparent, you’ll be more capable of dealing with them, and you’ll be far less likely to walk away.


6. Envy

Creative people are notoriously insecure. You may covet one published author’s self-confident voice, or another’s way with words. Maybe it’s his humor, or her emotional honesty. If you fear your work pales in comparison, remember that those authors didn’t strike it big by mimicking others or wallowing in jealousy.
Penance: With a friend or writing group, analyze your draft for what is uniquely you. Is it your voice? Your descriptions? Your quirky observations about the world around you? Edit your manuscript again, with an eye for drawing that element out on every page. Editors and agents don’t want another x, y or z. They want what you have that nobody else does. So don’t hold yourself to an impossible standard by trying to be one of your peers.


7. Wrath

The editing process can inspire uncontrolled feelings of rage in a writer. It’s difficult to discover or to hear from a trusted reader that you might not yet have fully developed your work—but it’s also an important step in growing your organic talent.
Penance: Wrath will only get in the way. Ignore feedback at your own peril: What angers us most holds a nugget of truth. Find it. Listen for the gifts within the criticism offered, and use them to help inspire new ideas. Your manuscript can only improve as a result.

How a professional editor can help you

Too many writers are seduced by the mythology of solitude as a writer's fate. Fact is, writers must be plugged into a vast array of networks for research, reading, advice, moral support, and all the other necessary acts that help make a story into a book ... such as editing.

And because I appreciate the necessity of networks, I won't hold forth on this topic. I'll let a colleague do it! Author Joanna Penn, who wrote the novel "Pentecost," made an eloquent video argument for hiring professional editors in a recent post at her blog. Among the reasons she says you should get professional help with your manuscript:
  • Professional editors can improve your work. They can be objective about your manuscript and give you the best tips possible for your work. We all want to send our best work out there.
  • They see so many manuscripts in specific genres so they will pick up things that amateurs won’t
  • You likely need a pro editor even if you are looking for a publishing deal. You need to submit the best book you possibly can to an agent or publisher. If you’re self-publishing you need it even more.
  • An editor will do different things e.g. editorial review on plot, structure, ways to make it more publishable all the way to line editing/copyediting
Convinced? If you'd like to hear how I could help you polish your manuscript, just check out all the details in the right-hand column.

What will it cost to self-publish your book? Don't forget editing

Whether you are published by a traditional house or you go the route of self-publishing, you might not know the true costs you face on the road to delivering your book to readers.

Trade publishers are doing less and less for authors these days, transferring a lot of the burden for editing, promotion and other necessities to the writer. And self-publishers bear the entire burden.

The cost most overlooked is editing. Professional editing can make the difference in selling your book to a trade publisher, or in its success as a self-published work. Some independent editors (or "book doctors") charge as much as $5,000 for their services. A marvelous recent article by writer's assistant Mary Babic about the costs of self-publishing estimate editing in the range of $2,000-$2,500.

Because I was annoyed at how some unscrupulous "editors" were taking advantage of would-be authors' dreams, I purposely offer the lowest available rate for my editing services: one penny per word. That means for the average 70,000-word manuscript, you'd pay only $700 ... and you get the benefit of a bestselling author's experience to maximize your chances of publication.

No matter which route you take, consider how professional editing might help you sell your book ... to an editor or to a large group of readers.

Everybody needs an editor ...

(Really, it was a very nice motel in Hammond, Ind., but this probably isn't the message the innkeepers intended to send. Is your manuscript or query sending the message you intend?)