What is tech editing anyway?
Tech editing is a service for crochet designers where they have someone (a tech editor) look over their patterns before publishing, whether they self publish or are submitting to a publisher. When you hire a tech editor (TE), there are several services that are often offered. The super simple explanation is that tech editing is working with a designer to make sure that the pattern is polished, that it is as accurate and professionally presented as it can be.
Specifically a TE checks several things:
- That all information needed to complete a pattern is included.
- That all information is technically accurate.
- Following the pattern produces an item of the stated size.
There are several ways that this is done and those are the services that I offer when I take on a tech editing job.
Tech Editing Services
For my tech editing clients, the hourly rate is often based on the project and what their exact needs are. Once a client contacts me, the process begins with a discussion of which services are needed for the pattern that I will be working on for them. After those discussions happen, I create a contract which includes my hourly rate (dependent on which services are being used), which services are agreed upon, an estimate of how long the work will take, how the communication about the pattern and edits will happen and any other pertinent details. This allows both the client and myself to have clear expectations of what work will be done. These preliminary discussions are not part of the charged time.
Service categories are as follows to give an idea of where your job would fall. This does not include all services potentially offered.
- Check tools and materials list.
- Check the abbreviations list. This includes checking for CYC standards
- Clarity of pattern notes.
- Gauge check (does it seem likely?).
- Proofread for consistency.
- Basic services in addition to one or all of the following.
- Check line by line to ensure that each line uses the number of stitches produced in the previous line and produces the stated number of stitches.
- Check that the chart matches the written instructions.
- Check that the stitches/rows match with the gauge and agrees with the information given in the schematic.
- Basic and Deluxe Services in addition to one or all of the following.
- Create style sheet.
- Create schematic
- Create stitch chart
What can I do to help my TE?
There are several things that you can do to help your TE which ultimately helps you because these things will help lower your tech editing costs.
- Have a style sheet including all information needed in every pattern: how you will abbreviate and punctuate, stock phrases for often used techniques, how you will list measurements, how different sizes will be shown in the pattern, font and size preferences, etc.
- Be your own TE first. Look over the pattern before sending it to the TE making sure it is the best it can be. This is where using testers can also help before sending to the TE.
- Let your TE know how you prefer to work and find out their preferences as well. This is an important relationship for a designer. This helps build a good working rhythm leading to easy communication and speeds the editing process up.
- Be organized. Allow plenty of time for the editing process so you won’t have to ask for a rush job and incur extra fees.
I hope this helps you understand what a TE does and how they can help you in the design process. To contact me for editing services, click here.