Best Memoir Editing FAQ
Q. Why choose The Memoir Network over another memoir company for best memoir editing?
A. This is not a simple binary question: either The Memoir Network is the “best” company or it is not the “best” company. “Best” is not an objective lens to evaluate a memoir service. It always comes down to “best” for you — a clearly subjective lens.
In short, you would choose The Memoir Network over another company because it promises to work best for you.
Q. How do I review this “best for me” lens?
A. Besides our credentials which we think are rather terrific and which we invite you to examine, you would look at the relationship you sense you could have with your editor (or coach or ghostwriter for that matter). This often comes down to chemistry.
You would assess this chemistry by examining the professional’s bio on our site (does this person’s history resonate with you?), by reading the writing excerpt available to you (does this feel like the sort of writing you would like to produce?), by having a complimentary consultation with this professional (is this time together not only promising in terms of expertise that will be brought to bear on your manuscript but in terms of getting along well with one another?)
Q. Are The Memoir Network professionals writers and teachers also?
A. Yes! As the inspiration and guide of The Memoir Network, Denis Ledoux comes to this work from both a writing and a teaching background. He has won writing fellowships as well as book awards and has written over a dozen books. As writer himself (as are all TMN coaches and editors), he understands the difficulties and challenges of writing long form—books. What Denis and his team bring is not only theory—although they have lots of that—but experience.
Denis earned a Master’s In Education and has been helping people to write memoir for years. He brings his teaching background to both his editing and to his interactions with his staff who themselves are writers and teachers of adult learners.
Editing is not a commodity to be purchased at the lowest price. You do best to choose a writing company were the staff is not only dedicated to helping writers but are writers themselves. The Memoir network meets this criterion so necessary to provide the best memoir editing help to its clients.
Q. How long does editing take?
A. The honest answer is: we don’t know. This question is like asking “How long does it take to lose X pounds?” It’s impossible to answer this with any accuracy. It is only with time that we will know how faithful the client is willing to be to the diet and can the client execute that willingness? Every day? Every meal? Every food choice? Is the client willing to exercise? How much and how often? Is the client willing to explore psychological bases for weight gain? How deeply?
Back to writing: what we can say is that after the three-hour trial we may be in a position to attempt an estimate. On the other hand, we may not be. Editing, and the same is true of coaching, is not a commodity. (It’s not like knowing how large of a water heater you need to purchase for a family of four!)
That said, how many books will you be writing and publishing? Most likely, it’s one or, at most, two. Don’t you want it to be your best effort that goes out into the world? Clients often add to their book project as they realize fully that they are one-time writers and it is to their benefit to get the story they most want into this one book.
What we can assure you is that we work as efficiently as is possible.
Q. Can I write a good memoir without editing?
A. Yes, of course, that’s possible if you are a person who reads much and has studied language and have a feel for dramatic development. Most people who come to us however are first-time and one-time writers who really have no writing experience. They depend on us to make the learning and writing curve a shorter one than it would be if they worked entirely on their own. Providing what is often the best memoir editing help available to you is something we strive to do.
Q. What if I find my editor and I lack chemistry?
A. With our process, you realize this early in your experience.
You get to talk to your writing professional in a complimentary consultation (generally lasting 30 to 60 minutes), you can read the editor’s writing, and then you get to have a three-hour trial. If you are still not sure at that point, you can continue working with your editor on short-term basis. For instance, you can request only a few pages of editing rather than commit long-term.
Alternately, you can contact the office and we can transfer you to another writer with whom you can repeat the get-acquainted process as you search for the best memoir writing help for you. There are no hard feelings when you leave your first memoir professional. We are dedicated to providing you the support you need to write the best manuscript you are capable of.
Q. Are there subject matters that you and your staff cannot or will not tackle?
Q. We think of ourselves as literary midwives for your manuscript. Just as midwives are trained to assist without distinction in the birth of a Chinese baby or a Jewish baby or a Greek baby, we too have worked on memoirs of every description. The content is yours. We focus on form, language and development. Our mission is to help you to express your content to the best possible.
That said, many years ago, I was asked to edit a book that was clearly anti-Semitic. I refused to take this on. We will not work on a manuscript that is prejudicial to any race, ethnicity, gender, sexual preference, etc. If attacking and degrading people is your topic, we are not the company for you.
Otherwise, we can work on a multitude of topics that reflect the human experience. Most manuscripts that come to us describe the hero’s journey of escaping a bad situation in favor of embracing a better life.
We invite you to contact us to check out if we are the best memoir writing help for you.
Are you ready to work with a memoir editor?
We offer an introductory package—try us for a three-hour commitment at $240 (with an associate editor) or $285 (with our founding editor). That’s it: three hours! If we’re a fit, you ask us for more time. If we’re not a fit, we go our separate ways.