Technical Editing Services since 1991 ~ Business Editing Services since 2006

When you read what you've written, you don't see what you've written. You see what you think you've written. They're not always the same.
IEEE member since May 2017

You need someone to look at what you've written before your reader or end user reads it.

  • Peer-reviewed journal articles
  • Policies and procedures
  • Instruction manuals
  • Technical manuals
  • Whitepapers
  • Spec sheets
  • Newsletters
  • Websites
  • Blogs
  • Bids, proposals and tenders

"The single biggest problem in communication is the illusion that it has taken place." (George Bernard Shaw)

I ensure that nothing gets between your reader and your message.

"The beautiful part of writing is that you don't have to get it right the first time, unlike, say, a brain surgeon." (Robert Cormier)

The other beautiful part is that you can get some help.

Editing and proofreading are not an expense. They are an investment.

I've been Carl Dickson's editor for 10 years, and he phrases that a little differently. He says I keep him from looking stupid.

When you write, that’s what you want. With Michael Edits, that’s what you get.

Great writing is like a window pane. Let Michael Edits be your Windex.

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Michael LaRocca, Amazon Author

Pricing

The fee for my technical editing service is 2 cents per word. The fee for my business editing service is 2 cents per word. Everything I do includes unlimited revisions. This is how we achieve perfection.

PayPal is my preferred method of payment, but if you prefer something else, we can do that too.

Most authors pay me after they receive the edited manuscript, but if you want to prepay, I won't stop you.

I do not edit printed documents. I work by email. My preferred format is Microsoft Word.

When you use my technical editing services or my business editing services, you know I'll be looking at your writing from a different vantage point than you are. I'm not as close to your work as you are. If you forgot to mention something that you know but your reader doesn't, I'll spot it. If you've repeated yourself but were just too weary after a dozen rounds of fast-paced deadline-driven self-editing to notice it, I'll spot it.

I'll ensure that your writing is clear and concise, that a reader never has to read something twice to know what it means, that the overall flow and structure are logical, and that your document is free of spelling or grammar errors.

I'll always respect your writing style, your overall tone, and your unique writing voice. This is why I make my changes using the Tracking feature in Microsoft Word (or Google Docs). Here's a brief tutorial. Tracking rocks.

This way, you can look at your document with its tracked changes, click "Accept" or "Reject" for each of my suggested revisions, and have a ready-to-publish document in which you know every single change we've made. This type of collaboration is also the one I use when I'm the author.

If you'd rather receive a clean "I don't want to edit my editor" copy, we can do that too. You're the boss. I'm just the gadfly.

Editing is not the same as proofreading, and the debate is too boring to contemplate, but I always do both. Back when I worked at Scribendi (I was EM392), the only thing I was scolded for was giving someone an edit who had only paid for a proofread. Well, that's just how I'm wired. If I see a way to improve a manuscript, I'm going to point it out. Thinking, "I see a mistake but you didn't pay me enough to fix it" strikes me as unethical.

Did you ever see an editor promise to read your document two times? Or three times? They're a bunch of slackers! I read your document as many times as it takes. I edit it on the computer screen a few times until I think it's perfect. Then I print it and edit it again, because it's not. I repeat this procedure until your manuscript is flawless.

Yes, this sounds time-consuming, but I started editing in 1991 and I've never missed a deadline.

Clients

Eastern Instruments: I was their sole Technical Editor from 1991-1999. In other words, they created this monster. If I hadn't left to create Michael Edits, there's a 93.14159% chance I'd still be their in-house editing department. Approximately.

Cigar Snob Magazine: Erik Calvino found me in 2008, and I've edited every issue of Cigar Snob Magazine since then. Erik's my hero.

Brenda Robinson: First black female Navy pilot; President of Aviation Camps of the Carolinas Inc.

How To Make An RPG: I love computer programming and RPGs. Editing this computer programming manual allowed me to marry those two passions.

Winning Proof: Your Legacy Builder, for sports professionals. Transform words from the heart into words of art. Book collaborator, project coordinator, writing accountability coach, ghostwriter, content consultant. If you've spent ten minutes with me, you've probably heard about how much I love football, so I am thrilled to be part of Michelle Hill's team.

TreeceCo Senior Financial Services: Fixed annuities, life insurance, estate planning, Medicare supplement insurance.

Tethered Aerostat Crane: I edited this request for a Federal research grant. It won.

Show Unreal: Streaming video with user location identification.

Matthew Pollard: Business coach (the "Rapid Growth Guy") - Find new business niche markets and create a sales system to get more customers and close more sales.

Environmental Process Solutions PLLC: Solving your water and air quality issues, and optimizing your wastewater and environmental treatment processes.

CIMTEC Automation: PLC and HMI repair services through the only factory-authorized GE 90-70 repair center in the world.

Qualitrol: Sales and service of new and remanufactured GE Fanuc PLC parts.

Lime Energy: Overcoming the challenges to small business energy efficiency.

Jens Graff: Associate Professor at Censor Secretariat, Ministry of Education, Denmark.

Fusion PPT: Strategy and technology consulting firm. Cloud computing, big data and analytics, cybersecurity, IT support services.

Denise Goldhammer: Perfectly Imperfecta: Conner's Story: Living With Brittle Bones.

Adonal David Foyle: Author, speaker, consultant, NBA center (Golden State Warriors, Orlando Magic, Memphis Grizzlies).

Jason Taylor: NFL defensive end, linebacker (Miami Dolphins, Washington Redskins, New York Jets), first ballot Hall of Famer.

Mike Ditka: NFL legend, Hall of Famer.

Praise

Carl Dickson, PropLIBRARY and Capture Planning: "Michael LaRocca has been our editor for many years [since 2006], reviewing dozens of documents, as well as our weekly newsletter. He has kept us from looking stupid countless times. Working with Michael is easy and friction-free. He has been extremely flexible and helped us meet even our most unreasonable deadlines. He has spoiled us."

Derek Lewis, Business Book Ghostwriter: "Impressively quick, impressively accurate, and impressively savvy. Michael is my secret weapon. He has saved me from countless embarrassments and faux pas. Nothing I write is fit to show until Michael says so."

Joelle Klein, Health & Lifestyle Writer / Blogger / Storyteller: "Michael is the perfect pair of second eyes for my articles. I find it impossible to edit my own work. When I need something to be perfect, I make sure Michael reads it before I send it out. He's reliable, fast and accurate."

Ressie Cavenaugh, Plant Manager, Eastern Instruments: "Michael is an energetic, engaged personality who produces more work per calorie consumed than any I've met since. His passion is writing and he pursues it with voracity and the results are impressive!"

Trish Saemann, Digital Marketing Professional, GoBeyond SEO: "Michael is a very detail-oriented professional who produces exemplary work consistently. We have been using Michael's services since July of 2013 and we plan to continue as long as he'll have us! The nature of our industry requires well-written content for blogs, ebooks and website copy. Nothing can tarnish a document with strong content like spelling errors and grammatical mistakes. Michael is the filter we use before publishing content. He is a vital part of our workflow. It is with great pleasure that I recommend Michael LaRocca."

Andrew Freiburghouse, Founder/CEO, Pronto Tax School: "One of the best in the business! Efficient. Great value. Pride of craftsmanship. Highly recommended."

Darrell Bain, Fictionwise Author of the Year: "Michael LaRocca has edited my books. His command of the English language is better than mine and I have a B.S. degree."

About Michael Edits and Michael LaRocca

IEEE member since May 2017

I started writing comic books in 1972. I was nine years old. The kids in the neighborhood loved them. I wrote my first published short story in 1979, won my first award in 1980, and never stopped writing.

I took two programming classes in high school, Computer Math in 1979-1980 and Advanced Computer Math in 1980-1981. This is also when I became an AD&D junkie, allegedly because the role-playing aspect was good practice for my writing but really because, hey, it's AD&D. Two of my first useful computer programs were one to print blank character sheets and another to randomly generate the six attributes of new player characters. I also enjoyed Champions, Top Secret, Car Wars, playing Othello against a computer and/or writing the program, all NFL-related computer simulations, Eliza, and playing Star Trek on the school's Teletype.

I earned an A.S. in Electronics Technology in 1983, then promptly became a computer programmer instead. GW-BASIC. Back when Sundays meant backing up the hard drive on 8" floppies. I learned CP/M and MS-DOS side by side and knew CP/M would win. Y'all know I was wrong, don't you?

I became a Military Electronics Specialist at Honeywell DCPD (Defense Communications and Production Division) in 1988. Crypto stuff, with a side order of robotics. It was a three-month temporary job, but I managed to return from two layoffs and hang onto that job for over 18 months. In my spare time, I became a BBS junkie. 300 baud. A coworker showed me that his Altos computer could run Windows, and we heartily agreed that pointing and clicking could never replace a DOS prompt. Wrong again. Never take stock advice from us.

Michael LaRocca

Honeywell DCPD sacked 60% of its work force by certified mail one day, and I was in that majority. After a few years repairing copy machines for Danka in Florida and then Three D Copying Systems in NC, I became a technical editor for Eastern Instruments (an R&D/Engineering firm in Wilmington NC) from 1991-1999.

In December 1999, I found myself living in Hong Kong on a tourist visa, which meant I couldn't legally work in Hong Kong. That's when I started editing novels for my U.S. and Canadian publishers, which is how and when Michael Edits was born. That's also when I finally became a published novelist. I spent six years editing over 300 published novels, editing an educational magazine in Hong Kong, teaching Advanced English Writing to university students in mainland China, and doing legal transcription and quality control for the court systems of Hong Kong and Singapore.

I moved to Chiang Mai, Thailand in 2006 and spent five years editing medical reports by doctors and medical students for publication in peer-reviewed journals. Meanwhile, my word-of-mouth campaign at Asian Institute of Technology in Bangkok succeeded beyond my wildest dreams, leading me to edit so many engineering dissertations that I had to outsource them to Canada, Australia, and the U.S. (I quickly stopped outsourcing. Michael edits everything at Michael Edits.) This is also when I began editing business books, blogs, newsletters, and Cigar Snob Magazine.

I've been back in North Carolina since 2011. My twin focuses are technical editing and business editing. Larger companies have in-house editing departments. Individuals and small businesses have me. At Eastern Instruments, we learned that I think like an electronics technician and a computer programmer, but that I also think like an end user and write for a layman. That oddball dichotomy has never left me. Nor has my single-minded focus on whatever I'm reading.

In 2000, I adopted a calico cat from the Hong Kong SPCA and I married a lovely Australian lady. Both live with me here in Durham, which proves that I bring home the best souvenirs.

I'm also teaching myself to play piano. Greatness will always elude me, but I'll just keep pounding.

Contact Me

Send me an email

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Michael LaRocca, Amazon Author

Privacy Policy

Lord Google wants me to have a privacy policy, so here it is:

  1. All communications are confidential, especially the ones I can't remember.
  2. I'll never sell or give away any information about you, because it's wrong and because I'm too lazy.

Too short? Too flippant? Okay. Here's something a bit more formal.

Privacy Notice

I'm the only person who writes the code for this site, and I'm the only person who ever sees any information collected by this site. I only have the information that you voluntarily give me by email or other direct contact. I'll never sell or rent this information to anyone. It's all mine.

I'll never contact you about new specials, products, or services, because I don't have any. This privacy policy will never change, so I won't contact you about that either.

I will use your information to respond to you, regarding the reason you contacted me. I will not share your information with any third party outside of my organization, and I'm the only person inside my organization, so that means I'm not sharing your information with anybody. It's all mine, like Smaug on a pile of gold.

Most people pay me by PayPal, which means I don't have your financial information. But if you pay me some other way, I'll protect the hell out of everything I learn.

Of course you may opt out of any future contact from me at any time. But I've been in business since December 1999 without ever initiating contact, so there's probably nothing to opt out of.

If you ever wonder what data I have about you, just ask. If you want me to delete any of it, just say the word.

If you have a non-disclosure agreement you want me to sign, send it over and I will. I can scan it and email it to you, put it in the mail, or even go up the road and fax it from Office Depot. Whatever you want is fine with me.

If you ever feel that I'm not abiding by this privacy policy, contact me immediately and I'll make it right.


Updated July 23, 2017
© Copyright 2000-2017, Michael LaRocca
Durham, North Carolina 27707