"I would have written a shorter letter, but I did not have the time".
This quote from the famous French intellectual (mathematician, physicist, inventor, writer and theologian), Blaise Pascal (1623-1662), exemplifies both the difficulty and the value of fine editing. This is why we take it seriously. Indeed, very seriously. That means knowing that fragmented sentences, such as the two preceding, are perfectly OK --- sometimes, regardless of what you may have heard. You've probably also heard that one cannot begin a sentence with "but" or "and". But I'm doing it right now. And there's not a thing wrong with it. You say that one cannot have a one-word sentence. Nonsense!
Alright, you get the idea. Packaging is important. Very important. One is judged every day by others on the basis of his or her dress, grooming, carriage, speech and, critically, writing. Show me what you have written and I will tell you who you are, usually, and in some degree; nothing is absolute.
Services; Qualifications; Cost; Testimonials
With the foregoing in mind, please be advised that I will:
- Edit fiction or nonfiction, including legal writing, to correct grammar, syntax, punctuation, spelling, capitalization and other elements of writing.
- Edit hard copy, and return an edited copy to you for re-composition, after which you can return it to me for a final proofreading if you wish.
- If you prefer that I recompose it, or have it recomposed, and return a finished copy to you, which will include a final proofreading, I can do that, but it will obviously take more time and therefore cost more.
- Edit online material and return to you a highlighted copy so that you can see the changes I made before you recompose the document. If you prefer that I recompose it, or have it recomposed, and return a finished copy to you, which will include a final proofreading, I can do that, but it will obviously take more time and therefore cost more.
- Edit your material by changing its form, but never its substance. By changing form, but not substance, the finished product will be as fine as it can be, something that you will be proud to have anyone read and which will most likely open doors for you.
- Index your material if indexing is required. Indexing is a skill that is not widely possessed. I, fortunately, have had a great deal of experience with it.
Services Not Included.
With the foregoing in mind, please be advised that I will not edit or index material that is so highly specialized or technical that an editor who is not conversant with the subject matter of such material cannot reasonably be expected to edit it effectively. I tried to edit Einstein's theories of relativity and threw in the towel. (That's a joke, but you get the idea.)
I am a retired attorney. I received both my undergraduate degree and my law degree from Case Western Reserve University. As an undergraduate, I was one course short of a major in English. I practiced law for 50 years. I was also the Managing Editor of a legal publishing company for 29 of those years. In retirement, I have written extensively --- articles, essays, letters and two full-length books --- on various subjects, mostly the American Civil War. I have written 54 articles and essays relating to this and other subjects. Almost everything I have written has been published. One of my full-length books took me five years to research and write. It is titled: Decapitating the Union: Jefferson Davis, Judah Benjamin and the Plot to Assassinate Lincoln. Reviews have been excellent, with 57 of 62 Amazon reviewers giving it five stars. My second book, titled: Who Really Killed Lincoln: Four Smoking Guns, is currently being published.
My fee is $45.00 an hour for fiction or nonfiction and for copy editing, proofreading and indexing. That makes it simple: no hidden fees; no "a little less for this and a little more for that"; just a straight-forward, easily understandable charge for services. Upon receipt of a client's work and order, I will estimate the time it will take to complete the service or services requested and then invoice the client for one-half of the estimated cost. Upon receipt of payment on this initial invoice, I will begin the work. Upon completion and delivery of the finished product, the client will be billed for the balance due, which may reflect a total cost that is less than the estimated cost (the project took less time to complete than anticipated) or more than the estimated cost (the project took more time than anticipated).
- "John Fazio the wordsmith! I never met anyone in my life who could turn a sow's ear into a silk purse as well as you can. I shudder to think where I would be without your editorial skills." --- Hon. William Chinnock, Judge, Cuyahoga County Court of Common Pleas
- "John, your talent with words and your editorial skills are truly extraordinary." --- John D. Wheeler, Retired Attorney