Do editors work on commission?
No. Not usually.
Why not? I think it would definitely encourage the editor to do an outstanding job editing and it would allow for the novice writer to get out there and make a little money without as much personal risk.
I’m not proposing that a writer just drafts something and sends it off to be finished by the editor. But, if a writer, myself perhaps, could do the initial editing himself then send something off to an editor that just needs minor line edits and proofreading, it seems reasonable that the writer and editor share the profits.
I’d love to find an editor willing to work with me for a commission.
- Writer: create the first draft of a novel.
- Writer: takes the time to carefully do his best to edit and proof the writing.
- Writer: sends the revised draft to the editor.
- Editor: Edits and proofs novel.
- Writer: Publishes said novel.
- Writer and Editor split royalties on pre-arranged schedule.
Perhaps I’m just dreaming, but, a writer is putting a lot of effort into something that may sell anywhere from zero to a million copies. There is no way to know ahead of time, however, a competent editor will have a good idea of what will and won’t sell and will do his best to ensure that the text is readable and marketable.