Author Topic: How much to charge for an editing side-hustle?  (Read 3067 times)

Ceridwen

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How much to charge for an editing side-hustle?
« on: January 06, 2016, 01:21:52 PM »
I've never had a side-hustle before, so I'm really at a loss of what to charge. 

I've stumbled across the opportunity to edit a Master's internship report.  English is the second language of the writer, so there it's mostly editing for grammar, logic, citations and just overall making it less wordy.  It's 60 pages of text. Very scientific. I would estimate it taking me about 4 hours to do.

This is a complete stranger to me, so I am not at all shy to ask on the high side.  If she says no, I really don't care.  No embarrassment factor.

She's asked for a quote.  What would you ask?

AmandaS1989

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Re: How much to charge for an editing side-hustle?
« Reply #1 on: January 06, 2016, 01:58:30 PM »
I wouldn't take anything less than 50/hr for a 60 page report. How fast do they want it back? If it's a rush job I'd charge at least 70/hr.

TrMama

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Re: How much to charge for an editing side-hustle?
« Reply #2 on: January 06, 2016, 03:58:19 PM »
I do a tiny bit of technical editing for a local business. I'm a tech editor by trade (in a different field) and super interested in this particular field/product. So the actual work is really easy for me and goes quickly. I charge $45/hr and realize I'm way undercharging.

In your case, the estimate of $50-70 is accurate. I've seen ads for other tech editors as high as $100/hr.

If it's someone you don't know well, or you think they may flake out, I'd consider asking for a deposit to make sure they don't stiff you.

humbleMouse

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Re: How much to charge for an editing side-hustle?
« Reply #3 on: January 06, 2016, 04:39:29 PM »
Wow, niche for making $$.  I would agree with the other posters, $50-$100 sounds like a good range depending on how you feel about the work. 

ShortInSeattle

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Re: How much to charge for an editing side-hustle?
« Reply #4 on: January 06, 2016, 04:54:47 PM »
Unless you're selling a package deal most of the editors I've met work on a per-page basis.  X dollars per page with a page being so-many-words to avoid people using wacky small fonts on you.  A per-page rate also removes your client's worry about how much the final product will run.

It may also depend on what kind of editing you are doing.  Are you editing for writing quality (grammar, copyediting) or are you fact-checking or are you making it more end-user friendly?  The more value you bring to the table the more you can charge.

I've only worked with fiction editors so I'm not sure what the market rates are.

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woopwoop

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Re: How much to charge for an editing side-hustle?
« Reply #5 on: January 06, 2016, 05:08:46 PM »
This is line editing - I'd expect to pay around a half cent to two cents per word in fiction, but you may be doing more legwork than that since it's nonfiction and includes citations which are harder to get properly right. I'd quote her for the whole report, not per hour. $300-500 doesn't seem unreasonable to me for a report of that length, half payable up front.

justajane

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Re: How much to charge for an editing side-hustle?
« Reply #6 on: January 06, 2016, 05:12:36 PM »
I edit dissertations as a side hustle. The rates of the agency I work for are as follows:

Proofreading only: 1 cent a word (works out to ca. $4 a page)
Copyediting: 2 cents word (ca. $7 or $8 a page)
Line editing: 3 cents a word (ca. $9-$12 a page)

Mind you, I as the editor don't make that much, since the agency takes a cut. But this is what they charge.

If I were you I'd charge about 3 cents a word - so for 60 pages about $500-$700. Aim high if you really don't care about doing it, but the person is likely to balk at this. People don't understand how much goes into editing.

Edited to add that I imagine it will take you more than 4 hours, but maybe this person writes better than my clients. I would estimate closer to 5-7 hours.
« Last Edit: January 06, 2016, 05:14:29 PM by justajane »

Ceridwen

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Re: How much to charge for an editing side-hustle?
« Reply #7 on: January 07, 2016, 06:26:02 AM »
Thank you so much for the replies and insights! First of all, I should have specified that it is 60 pages double-spaced, so really more like 30 pages.  The report is complete so there would be no worry about not knowing what the final product is.  And yes, I absolutely would have required a deposit.  Completion deadline of 10 days.

I quoted her $200 (completed in 7 days), and she countered at $150.  I came down to $180 as my final offer and she passed.  I think she may come back, but I'm not sweating it.

Thanks again!

I'm a red panda

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Re: How much to charge for an editing side-hustle?
« Reply #8 on: January 07, 2016, 06:34:22 AM »
The last time I had a copy editing project (in 2006, charge more!) I got paid $3.75 per unedited, double spaced page of manuscript. This is what the company offered, I didn't thing to counter.  It also included making sure the book met APA style for all citations.

For my usual style of editing (which is content editing, I'm not really a copy editor) I charge $60 per hour.