Terms and Conditions

MANUSCRIPTS must be submitted in Times New Roman, size 12 font, and double spaced. If they are not, I will change them. It makes the editing process cleaner and easier.

I DO NOT edit non-fiction books. However, I will edit non-fiction articles, website material, press releases, and other such subject matter. I am also not familiar with UK grammar. I will edit UK books, but only if they are being completely Americanized.  If you want to keep some UK tone, (colour instead of color, sayings, etc) that is fine. You just have to make sure to tell me. However, any and all grammar related issues that I do recognize will be Americanized.

GRAPHIC and/or gratuitous RAPE scenes are not accepted. Books containing them are subject to IMMEDIATE return without refund or completion.

HOWEVER, books that contain rape are not an automatic no. A girl trying to get over being raped, a fade-to-black rape scene that is integral to the story, a book about rape that inspires hope in victims, a crime book that manages to impress the violence without making it graphic and pleasingly sexual, etc… would all be considered and most likely accepted. Please just explain the scenes to me. Erotica books that use rape as something pleasingly sexual, or any book that does, or any book that describes rape in graphic, violent, sexual, scene-by-scene detail, will not be accepted and if in a book I accepted without my knowledge, will be returned with NO REFUND OR COMPLETION. (Rape Clause Added October 20, 2015)

AUTHORS are responsible for getting their books to me by the date agreed upon. If I have not received it within two days of the agreed upon date, I will move on to the next in line, unless I have an email from the author and we agree on other terms.

RUSH JOBS, which I rarely take and usually only from established clients, will incur a fee. It will depend on length of manuscript and amount of time given to finish. The start amount is $100, and it goes up from there. Anything expected in less than ten days is considered a rush. The less amount of time given to complete the edit, the higher the rush fee.

-There is no harm in asking if a rush is possible, for a new or established client. I just can’t promise it will always be possible, so I would not base a publishing date on it unless verified with me in advance.

PLEASE be aware that books that need excessive editing outside of the package picked may lead to extra fees. The fees will be discussed with the author before any work is done. If while editing the book, excessive editing outside the package becomes a problem, progress will halt while the author is contacted and extra fees are discussed. This rarely happens. However, I have had a book for proofread that the sample was great, but when I received the book, only the first two chapters were acceptable. The rest needed more of a developmental edit. This is the reason I mainly ask for middle-of-the-book samples.

Fact-checking is not included in any package. As a courtesy, if I notice anything that does not sound right, I will look it up and point it out. However, if your book has excessive fact-checking that needs to be completed, it needs to be addressed during the developmental editing stage, which I am not responsible for.

PAYMENT is accepted up front. An invoice will be sent through PayPal when the manuscript is received. No work will be done until invoice is paid in full. PayPal fees are calculated and added to final bill. A $100 cancellation fee will be charged if the client cancels their time slot less than a week before their date. A $50 cancellation fee will be charged if the client cancels their time slot less than two weeks before their date. This fee is strictly enforced.

HOLIDAYS and holiday weekends DO NOT count toward the estimated amount of time given to edit your manuscript. Those times are spent with my family. We always take a vacation during the week of Thanksgiving, a week at the end of March, and a week in the summer, usually in July. Please be respectful of those times. If any of those fall during your time period, please be aware of this. Example: If you are given a time period over Christmas, please be aware the holidays will interfere with the edit time.

I no longer work on Sundays unless it is an emergency. Please factor this into scheduling.

Times given are estimates unless completely firmed up with me by way of a pre-order publication date. Two-week turnarounds are no longer automatically given. Multiple manuscripts are in my hands at all times. I work for two different publishing companies as well as freelance. Manuscripts are given my complete attention and are turned over in as timely a manner as possible. Sometimes, life happens. Please be patient. 

***I am NOT a developmental editor. I am a final-draft editor. If you are a FIRST-TIME author who needs extensive help with plot, character development, and flow, I would recommend you hire a developmental editor to work with you through the different stages of pre-editing before you contact me.***

I reserve the right to refuse any and all manuscripts at my discretion. I also employ a contributing freelance editor who does occasional copy OR proofs for me. Every manuscript makes it way through me for first and final edits.

Contact Details:
To contact me about availability, questions, or to submit your manuscript, please email me at cynthiashepp@yahoo.com. Please be aware that my schedule fills up quickly. For assurance of a spot, a 4-6 week pre-schedule is necessary. However, do not hesitate to contact me about sooner availability. It is possible that I have open spots.

(No Refunds… No Exceptions.)
I always recommend that authors send the manuscript to betas after editing. No manuscript will ever be 100% perfect. Betas can help find those stray errors before publication. They are a valuable asset. I have three beta proofers who occasionally do third-glance proofreads for me, but only after initial edits and proofreads are already done. They are more of a second-set-of-eyes part of the process. If, for any reason, you do not want this extra (Free to the author–I pay for it.) addition, please let me know. I just like to make sure manuscripts are given the best. One more set of eyes never hurts.


I continuously update my Terms and Conditions. It is the client’s responsibility to occasionally glance at them to see if anything has changed.


*Additional information can be found on the fine-print additional details page.*