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Why your book series should use the same editors and proofreader

When you’re publishing a book series, you need to think about each individual book as well as the whole series. Part of this is considering your editorial team – the editors and proofreader that work on your book series.

As with most questions, the answer on whether you should use the same editors and proofreader for your book series is: Depends.

But if you value consistency – especially if your series uses its own language or has epic worldbuilding – having the same editorial team can really make a difference.

Image by Hope House Press on Unsplash

Advantages of using the same editors and proofreader for your book series

Every writer has an editorial team of editors and at least one proofreader. As an indie author you’re going to see the advantages of using the same editorial professionals in real time.

Your editorial team might be made up of a line editor, developmental editor, and proofreader. Ideally, these should all be different people, but you can get away with using the same line and developmental editing professional. Make sure not to use the same person for proofreading though!

There are also book series editors who can help you

Some of the advantages of using the same editors and proofreader for your book series are:

  • Familiarity with the editors and proofreader makes you feel more confident to work with them – you already know what to expect with them.
  • Your editors and proofreader being familiar with the previous book in the series means they know what to expect and what they’ve already spotted, so they can work more efficiently to make similar changes in the next book in the series.
  • You save time on being asked the same questions – your editors and proofreader will be able to keep things more consistent and reduce the amount of work they need to do.

It can still be tempting to shop around different editors and proofreaders, even after they’ve worked on your first book. This is especially true if you’re re-evaluating your budget.

Are there any reasons not to use the same editors and proofreader for all the books in a series?

The big reason for not using the same editors and proofreader for a whole book series is if you’re not happy with their services.

You might have found that you aren’t compatible with an editor while working with them. Or, since they last worked on your book, you’ve found someone else who has more experience in your genre.

It’s also possible you have a tighter or looser budget for editing and proofreading a book, so you can afford an editor or proofreader you previously couldn’t.

One of the most common reasons for not using the same editors and proofreader for your whole book series is availability. An editor or proofreader might really want to continue working with you, but if they’ve already booked a project then it can be difficult to make this work.

If you’re able to be flexible with the schedule to work with your editors or proofreader, you might be able to work around this. Otherwise, especially if you’re on a tight publishing schedule, you can ask them for recommendations for another editor or proofreader.

Should you use the same beta and ARC readers for each book in your series?

If you use beta readers or ARC readers, you might want to consider the benefits and drawbacks of using the same people for each book in your series.

Beta readers give you feedback on your book before you have completed editing. When writing a book series, having beta readers who have read multiple books in a row is ideal for making sure you’ve tied up character arcs and plot lines from the rest of the series.

It can also be good to have fresh eyes on a sequel, but you might find their feedback is more disjointed because they aren’t familiar with the previous book(s).

On the other hand, ARC readers review your book when it’s finished and ready to publish. To maximise your reviews, you’ll want ARC readers to have read other books in the series so they have an attachment to the characters.

But new readers are also beneficial, and you can offer the previous book and the new book together. This can help you get fresh reviews on the first book.

If your book series has standalone books, you should definitely send out your book to a combination of previous readers and new readers.

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