What I will do for you!
There are three levels of editing.
Substantive or structural editing.
A substantive edit looks at the overall manuscript.
By the time your manuscript is ready to go to an editor, you have probably read it many times. You are very close to your story and might not see where your thoughts have not translated well to the page. Family and friends have been very supportive, but are they going to point out that chapter 3 is a bit boring? Or that they don't understand what motivated your characters to behave as they did?
I will provide a report covering such issues as:
For a non-fiction work, a substantive edit looks at the structure. Have you presented your ideas in a logical, readable way? Is your language appropriate for the audience: academic for a thesis, friendly for a newsletter, formal for a business document? Does your document fulfil the intended purpose: answering the essay question or thesis hypothesis, delivering information, selling a product, promoting youself?
This is what many people think of as 'editing'.
Publishers receive hundreds or thousands of unsolicited manuscripts every year. You want yours to be error-free so that the publisher can focus on the story.
I will mark up your manuscript for:
The same issues are covered for a non-fiction document.
This is the final check before a manuscript is sent to the printer or publisher, not a stage for detailed changes. I will look at:
An edit that covers all three stages of editing is called a comprehensive edit. This usually involves the manuscript going back and forth between author and editor as changes are made.
Once a publisher has accepted your manuscript, an in-house editor will probably work on it with you. But to get to that stage; you need impartial, professional help to polish and perfect your work. And if you choose to self-publish, input from an experienced editor is even more important.