J. B. Wheatley

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Rates & Fees


It is important to share a common understanding of the terminology here. By copyediting, I mean checking the text for errors of grammar, usage, spelling, punctuation, etc. Copyediting does not include critiquing the style, organization, or logical flow of the document (that is substantive editing), nor does it include fact checking or indexing.

That said, I am an attentive reader, and I will likely notice such problems. Therefore, I do not recommend that you ask me to do substantive editing. If you really need it, I will tell you.

Substantive editing includes making sure the document makes logical sense and providing limited criticism of style, organization, flow, etc. It is harder work, and it usually involves several iterations of me sending the document back to you.

My ability to do layout and graphics is pretty much limited to Microsoft PowerPoint, Adobe Photoshop, and Adobe InDesign. I can improve your graphics and I can convert your document into a print-ready .pdf file.

Technically, I do not do “proofreading.” When most people say they want something proofread, what they really want is copyediting, which I do. However, technically, proofreading involves comparing two documents to ensure that they are identical—mind-numbing stuff and pretty much unnecessary in the age of digital documents.

I do not do fact checking or indexing:

  • Fact checking is a job for a researcher; I don’t have those resources at my disposal.
  • Indexing is an awful, painstaking task that I have never trained to do. I did it once, and I swore never to do it again. (I note that Word 7 claims to make the job easier.)

Plagiarism: In my experience, most people don’t plagiarize on purpose. It is usually a matter of forgotten quotation marks or a lost footnote. I do not check for plagiarism. That is the author’s responsibility. However, if I see it, I will tell you.

Hours: The next question, of course, is how many hours will your document take? I do this in steps.

  • Step 1: I review your document for one hour, noting how many pages I can complete within that hour. Based on that review and a consideration of the rest of the document, particularly how many footnotes and bibliographical entries are involved (they can take longer—although EndNote makes this easier), I will get back to you with a bill for one hour of copyediting and a price for the rest of the document. That price is firm.
  • Step 2: You agree to my price.
  • Step 3: I begin the document. If you send me additional material not in the original document that I reviewed, we will need to agree on additional charges.
  • Step 4: I finish the document and send it back along with a bill. The bill will be the agreed on amount—minus what you paid for the initial review. This price is firm, with one exception. If I estimate that it will take me 100 hours, but it only takes me 90 hours, you will only be billed for 90 hours.


I have written or re-written numerous reports, memoranda, pamphlets, etc. I price such work on a case-by-case basis. Please send me a query, and I will send you a price.


I sell my copyright-protected digital images. However, I do not consider myself a “professional” photographer. I am not the guy you want doing a wedding or a portrait shot. I can recommend a couple of folks. I am sometimes asked to teach a class. Again, there are better folks around, but I can at least cover the basics, if that is all you need.

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