Editing Service

Hey everyone,

I hope you’re all well.

Besides being a writer (well, every day I try), I’ve also edited a couple of novels and other projects, such as short story anthologies and collections, and if there’s one certainty in the world of publishing, it’s that everyone needs an objective eye to read through their work and offer an objective opinion, while also putting in the time to try and make a manuscript or a story the best it can be.

​Now, I have no degrees and I haven’t undergone any training to be an editor. There’s absolutely no sense in trying to bullshit anyone about that.

​What I will bring to your manuscript or story is the eye and opinion of a reader who simply cannot be without books and who loves reading. I will read your tale(s) from many angles: readability, pace, character arcs, plot arcs, showing versus telling, world building, and more I can’t think of right now.

Another warning: ask some clients I’ve already worked with and they might tell you that I can be brusque, and perhaps even confrontational. It’s one of the many things I’m working on, and mainly happens when I’m editing a first draft. So, no more first drafts for me. I’ll happily edit your work if it’s at least at a third draft. Why? Because first drafts shouldn’t be sent to editors.

​First drafts are basically a regurgitation of your vision. They are choked with massive mistakes, senseless events, jumbled character arcs, plots that are forgotten or aren’t necessary, etc. They are often raw and feverish and need work on your part to make everything coherent and ready for the editor, which usually happens around the 3rd draft. I know there are some authors who submit first drafts to their editors, but I’ve gone through enough of those drafts to know that I’m not at my best when working on them.

So, no first drafts.

I primarily read and enjoy the following genres, so these are what I wouldn’t mind editing:

Science Fiction,

Fantasy (Epic, High, Dark, Urban)


Thrillers (high concept, serial killers, psychological)

Action / Adventure


Final draft proofing: For when you have a polished, ready-to-submit draft and you’re sick of reading through it and want fresh eyes to have a look and find what might remain – $2 per 1000 words / R38 per 1000 words

​Assessment: I’ll read through your first 20 pages and note the areas you need to work on, whether those are point of view jumps / swapping, character arcs, grammar niggles, voice, etc. $2 per 1000 words / R38 per 1000 words

​One round of full edits: a complete edit of your manuscript, in which I will look at all the good stuff – point of view, pacing, character and plot arcs, readability, coherence, voice, etc. $200 for novels up to 80K words; $350 for novels 100K and over

With that out of the way, if you find my prices manageable and are willing to let an untrained degree-less writer have a look at your work, please get in touch and send me an email at davedeburghwriter @ I accept payment via PayPal for clients outside of South Africa, and transfers to South African banks for local (South African) clients.


​Gary Compton, author of The Fourth Reich: Head of the Snake and The Zeborian Matrix.

​”Prior to publication, Dave did an in depth edit over a four week period. Over 600 editorial comments which average about two per page. I had to agree on almost all of them, took the actions needed, kicked myself for being lazy and finished story before it went to copy editors.”


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