It’s a struggle, for sure, Jack! I also charge an hourly fee, and I think that’s the fairest way to go for all involved.
As for helping clients see how involved the process truly is, I currently offer a low-priced trial hour. In the trial hour, I go about my normal (comprehensive) working style with the Track Changes function turned on. Once clients review their trial hour, they get to see for themselves just how much work their documents actually need. They’re usually very appreciative then about having such a comprehensive service and can feel good about it going forward. Alternatively, if they find the trial hour useful but have budget concerns, I’m glad to scale back on stuff like leaving grammatical explanations in the margins to speed things up a little.
But there is always the very rare client who is still convinced that all they need is “a little” editing. And usually those clients will just go find someone else. Which is fine with me. Because doing a shoddy job is:
- bad for the client.
- bad for the editor’s reputation.
Thanks for sharing your feedback, Jack, and I’m glad you found the piece insightful! :)