Session Description

Almost Everything You Need to Know About Editing AND How to Find the Right Editor for Your Manuscript

Have you considered hiring an editor but don’t know if the expense is worth it, what editors do, what type of edit is needed, or how to find an editor that’s right for your work? Or maybe you’re wondering why one editor promised to provide a developmental edit for your 80,000-word manuscript for $400 while another wants $2400? This presentation will give you a firm foundation in the basics. We’ll break down the differences in a developmental edit, line edit, copy edit, and proofread—and typical costs for each. We’ll cover the essential aspects of what editors do (or should do) and what they don’t do (or shouldn’t do). Most importantly, when you’re ready to hire an editor, you’ll know what to ask for, what to expect, and how to determine if the editor is the right one for you—and your manuscript.

About Mari Ann Stefanelli

A former public relations professional, Mari Ann worked for a prominent New York City PR firm, a national nonprofit, and a boutique PR firm. All positions had one priority—secure positive unpaid media coverage for clients––despite a crowded market. After she moved to the Atlanta area, Mari Ann launched her editing and book coaching business, the Writer’s High, in 2014 and now brings that same focus and dedication to authors, helping them polish manuscripts that get noticed in today’s crowded market. When her second client, a debut author, landed on the New York Times Best-Seller List, Mari Ann may have been even more ecstatic than her client!

Mari Ann’s professional editorial services honor the author’s voice and vision while showing how to take their manuscript to new heights. Mari Ann knows how exciting––and stressful––the publishing journey can be, and authors can feel confident knowing that all communication will be encouraging, respectful, and confidential.

In addition to her editing business, she founded the Writer’s High Retreat, an inspiring weekend retreat featuring literary luminaries such as the late Winston Groom, Patti Callahan Henry, Joshilyn Jackson, and Cassandra King Conroy. Mari Ann is also a founding coordinator for the Georgia chapter of the Editorial Freelancers Association. In this volunteer role, she helps editors learn more about the industry and sharpen their skills through numerous professional education events each year.

When Mari Ann’s not focusing on clients, she’s fostering rescued puppies with the Oconee Regional Humane Society or exploring the bucolic natural beauty of Georgia’s lake country.

Amanda Vining photo

Amanda holds a BS in Biology from Georgia College & State University. She began her career as an educator with the Georgia Department of Natural Resources. After leaving the DNR, Amanda became a formal educator with Baldwin County School System and Jasper County School System. Amanda began her museum career at the Museum of Arts and Sciences (MAS) in Macon, Georgia, where she served as Curator of Environmental Science
(2011-2020). While at MAS, Amanda developed a love for sharing the world around us with the many students who visited on school field trips. During her time as Curator of Environmental Science, Amanda launched a storytime
program for preschool children.

Since 2020, Amanda has been serving Georgia Writers Museum as a volunteer on the Education Committee. Amanda has brought her love of sharing stories with students by launching Peaches’ Reading Pasture. As Museum Manager, Amanda looks forward to serving the community and helping to inspire those within our community to put words to paper and share their stories.

Amanda was born and raised in nearby Shady Dale, Georgia. Her husband, Rodney, is a native of Eatonton, and they currently reside in Putnam County. They have three children.