Presents...

~ Editorial Services ~

     Editing of novels, novellas, novelettes and short stories available from Alayne Gelfand.

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Who Am I?

In 1981, I started editing writing and publishing “fan fiction” – short stories and novels based on media characters such as those from TV shows and movies. When I say “editing and publishing”, I mean the following:
     1-line-editing
     2-editing for content and consistency
     3-editing for grammar and spelling
     4-feedback on plot and character development.

Since 1981, I have edited and published over eighty anthologies and novels and am currently working on editing four anthologies.

I’ve been writing fiction – original characters and fan stories – since 1976. In that time, I’ve written over two hundred-fifty stories and four novels. My original fiction, fan fiction and poetry have appeared in semi-professional publications as well as dozens of fanzines (fan magazines) edited by other publishers.

Currently, I have three short stories in progress as well as two novels.

I have an AA in Creative Writing as well as an AA in Art History and twenty-nine years active job experience in the editing field.

My experience as an editor sprang from my experience as a writer. Taking both good and bad experiences with other editors into account, I’ve taken the good advise and, especially, the poor advise and incorporated them with my own editing. I’ve learned most of what I know about editing from other editors, specifically negative experiences with editors when submitting my own writing elsewhere. I learned very early how not to edit and, by process of elimination, how to edit. I learned how to speak to authors, how to communicate my advise without becoming hostile or belittling, condescending or harsh. The skills involved in giving feedback that may be harsh or might seem extreme is an art unto itself; communication with an author is paramount in working together to make the story – or novel – the best it can be. I’m not looking to transform your story into how I would have written it; I’m looking to help you, the author, achieve the best writing possible for your work.

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Part One

If you’re submitting your work – novel, novella, novelette, short story – to a professional publication, your submission should be typo free. It should also have any WPs (writer’s problems) fixed or eliminated before submitting. Grammar, punctuation, spelling should all be correct upon submission. These are things no author, no author, can find let alone fix for themselves. The author is simply too close to his or her work to see these kinds of details.

While friends can be excellent resources for second or third or fourth opinions on your work, they will always be friends (or family members) and, as such, may tell you as truthfully as possible what they think of your work. They are not, however, adequate audiences to help you sift through your work to find the little things that a professional author or editor can find and help you eliminate.

The publisher you submit your work to is not going to take any time to consider your work if it is submitted appearing unprofessional; sloppy, poorly punctuated, with poor grammar, with typos, etc. The time to work those things out is before you submit because there will be no time to fix these things after you’ve submitted.

A professional editor at a publishing house or publication expects professional submissions; anything less will simply be deleted and the likelihood of your work ever being considered for that publishing house or publication will be very slim.

Which is where I come in. I can help you find all the errors, weaknesses, plot holes, inconsistent characters that are in your work before your work is sent to a professional publishing house or publication.

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Part Two

If you are writing fan fiction and need the same help as above, I will gladly help you with that as well. Fan Fiction is defined as any fiction based on characters that already exist in the media: TV or movies. If you’re submitting your work to a fanzine, any fan editor is going to be more impressed with a clean story or novel than with something that needs extensive work. I speak from personal experience as both an author and an editor.

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My definition of “editing”:

1: I line-edit for punctuation, grammar, spelling, typos and continuity.

2: I edit for characterization which means your characters must make sense; their actions must match the qualities you, the author, have given them. By this I mean no character can do anything without you having given them motivation either before or after whatever action is in question. All actions taken by each character must match that character’s personality.

3: I edit for plot and will make appropriate suggestions where needed for clarification, expansion, etc.

4: One of my specialties is “translating” British English into American English. If you have an American character in your story and are not from America, you’d be surprised by how many turns of phrase and specific words simply aren’t used in American English.

5: I'm an extremely easy editor to work with; I always listen to my authors and respect them enough to let them have the last word if it's not a matter of punctuation, grammar, spelling or continuity (of course, grammar doesn't apply to idiosyncratic speech patterns written into the character(s) including slang and such). BUT I expect the same respect in return, that any author who hires my services listens to what I have to say. Discussion about any comments I make is always a good thing; arguing is not.

6: I prefer to use the “track changes” feature in Word so please let me know if you can not use this feature – if you’re not on Word, for example, or don’t like to use the feature… If you have the feature but are unfamiliar with it, I will be happy to walk you through it. It’s a very easy feature to use and makes editing much clearer for both the editor and the author.

7: Editing Fees for original work (non-fan fiction):
     1-$100.00 for the first 100 pages; this includes anything and everything under 100 pages. Example: a 40 page story still commands a fee of $100.00;
     2-The fee for any and all pages over 100 dollars is $1.00 per page. Example: a story that is 101 pages will be $101.00, a novel that is 700 pages is $700.00.
     3-A $50.00 payment must be paid in advance of any work being done, the balance due upon completion of our work together. Payment via PayPal, personal check or money order is acceptable. Services paid for via personal check will not commence until 10 days following receipt of payment.

8: Fan-ficiton fees: Please contact me for specifics.

9: You must contact me via e-mail before sending any work to be edited. I’ll discuss each author’s work with each author before we agree to proceed.

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Who the heck am I?

I have been an editor of fan fiction for 26 years and a professional editor for 18 years, editing numerous short stories and novels as well as editing the entirety of my erotic vampire anthology, PRISONERS OF THE NIGHT.

I’m also an experienced author and have won several amateur writing awards over my 30 year writing career (I started writing when I was 3 years old, no really!) as well as many university poetry and fiction awards.

My writing career began with fan fiction based in Star Trek and moved on to other fan-based themes over the years. As well as publishing PRISONERS OF THE NIGHT and my fantasy anthology, AMARANTH, I’ve been publishing fan fiction for 24 years. I’ve also sold original short fiction to many small press anthologies.

To read examples of my writing, please use the drop-down menu to the left of this page. Comments and feedback are very welcome.

Alayne Gelfand
(Dovya Blacque, my most frequently used pen name)

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