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Hidden Gems: Meet Andrew Doty of Editwright

Today we’d like to introduce you to Andrew Doty. 

Hi Andrew, we’re thrilled to have a chance to learn your story today. So, before we get into specifics, maybe you can briefly walk us through how you got to where you are today?
I actually started editing books as a volunteer for a nonprofit publisher (punctum books), not realizing it would pave the road to a total career change. 

One day in 2013, I realized I was absolutely loving the 10 to 15 hours I spent each week editing books as a volunteer, and meanwhile, I was stressed out from being overworked and underpaid at my management position at a coffee roaster. It was clear what I should do. I left my job and started working as a freelance editor under the name Editwright. 

Delivering clean, typo-free manuscripts to authors brought me a lot of fulfillment, but I soon observed that many of my self-publishing clients had heard they needed an editor but had not learned it takes a whole lot more than an editor to publish a book that sells copies and gets good reviews. 

Thanks to my experience in the publishing industry, I was in a unique position to be able to help self-publishing authors, so I started working more as a book coach than as an editor. Though I still make lots of edits, now my time is best spent building and managing teams of professionals to help authors publish high-quality books and marketing strategies that sell copies and build readerships. 

Now, in addition to helping authors and publishers, Editwright also provides proofreading, editing, and project consulting to St. Louis nonprofits and businesses. We stay busy. 

Has it been a smooth road? If not, what were some of the struggles along the way?
It’s no secret that running a small business is hard work. 

Our projects are all unique, and many require a lot of proactive planning and relentless attention to detail. Sometimes taking care of a project’s needs requires working nights and weekends. And as the person responsible for Editwright’s bottom line, it’s been a struggle to keep my work schedule inside the 9 to 5. 

I didn’t start scheduling holidays off or taking vacations until my fourth year. You have to be intentional about that sort of thing. It’s important for your mental health. 

Please tell us more about your business or organization. What should we know? What do you do, what do you specialize in / what are you known for?
Editwright provides writing, editing, proofreading, graphic design, illustration, book coaching, marketing, web design, strategic consulting, and project management. 

Probably what we’re best known for is helping to make successful, professional-quality publications on indie budgets. Especially in book publishing, there’s a lot of stigma against self-publishing titles because of the tragic number of super-low-quality book covers and unedited writing. We work with our clients to define realistic and affordable budgets so they can publish books that will compete with the heavyweights, so to speak. We even build and help execute crowdfunding campaigns to meet our clients’ fundraising goals. 

What matters most to you?
The most important things to me are quality and honesty, and when it comes to editing, these two things are closely connected. Giving someone editorial feedback means being honest, and it can take a lot of practice to find ways to make sure that honesty comes across as constructive criticism instead of “brutal honesty.” 

Honesty and quality are also related in that editing is quality control, and it needs as much time as it needs. If you rush quality control, you don’t have quality control. You have to be honest about allowing the time it takes to develop a quality publication. If you’re rushing a project to meet an arbitrary deadline, you’re not being honest about seeking quality. 

Contact Info:

Image Credits

Andrea Melania Rodriguez

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  1. James Goltz

    September 9, 2021 at 10:16 am

    I went to SIUE when Andrew did. He was a top student and he helped me out several times when I was struggling. He had chops for some of the most difficult classes. I am happy to see he is getting noticed. I am not a book writer but if I was I would not hesitate to seek him out to help me!

  2. BobbiLkemer

    September 11, 2021 at 3:39 pm

    Hi Andrew,
    Just came across this interview and am so impressed! I hd a no idea you provided all of these services. You are a one-man everything! I did a lot of these things; but not all of them. There is a real need for the help you are giving authors. I’m really sorry I didn’t get to know you better while I was in SLPA. I am officially retired and have moved to Florida—two things I didn’t plan on doing. SLPA is lucky to have you. Congratulations on this article. Best, Bobbi

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