Children’s Book Editing Services

Unlock the magic of your story

You’ve got the makings of a wonderful children’s story. But to truly make it stand out, you know it needs to be polished to perfection.

Just because your book is for a younger audience, doesn’t mean it doesn’t need the same level of attention to make it something really great. In fact, children’s books can need even closer attention than those written for adults.

(Do you know how sophisticated a ten-year-old can be?)

Children’s book editing is designed to give your manuscript the attention it needs before going to publishing. It ensures you’re creating a book that truly stands out, appeals to your audience and becomes a beloved piece of work.

We work with you to unlock the mysteries and enhance the magic of your books.

Flying Pants Editing helped us with editing, spell checking and formatting our pitch document to publishers. They were fast and fantastic to work with. It gave us the confidence to know that our presentation was the best it could be. The result was a publishing deal with Allen & Unwin, we are very thankful for their speed and professionalism.

Richard Pritchard - co-Author/Illustrator - Wylah The Koorie Warrior

Giving your story the magic touch

Manuscript appraisal

Discover what’s involved to take your work from draft to completed work. A manuscript appraisal gives you the insight you need to polish and perfect your piece. You’ll receive a considered, detailed report on the first impressions, setting, characters, themes, structure and plot as well as your synopsis.

You’ll know exactly what you need to consider to get your work ready for publication.

Structural edit

Perfect if you’re looking for advice on how to best structure your manuscript and get it to completion. This comprehensive service involves a detailed appraisal, along with a manuscript markup focusing on story arcs and growth of characters, and the success of multiple plotlines – how they intersect and work with each other. As well as comprehensive notes on tone, voice, point of view (POV) and the underlying themes.

Picture edit

We will help you to find the right flow and offer advice on storytelling visually. We’ll help you to understand what to put into your pictures and, most importantly, what to leave out. Getting the balance between text and imagery is key to any illustrated book and we will be there with you to find what works.

I reached out to Flying Pants Editing for a manuscript appraisal for my picture book. Emma and Lucinda provided thoughtful, considered – and most importantly, actionable – feedback. I came away understanding exactly what I needed to do to get my manuscript to a publish-worthy state, and inspired to put those recommendations into action. There is immeasurable value in receiving feedback from industry professionals, and Emma and Lucinda deliver their findings with clarity and empathy. I couldn’t recommend Flying Pants Editing highly enough.

Brooke Hill

How It Works

Step 1: Manuscript appraisal

For new clients we recommend starting with a manuscript appraisal. It’s the best way for us to provide insight before you consider copy editing or commissioning illustrators.

You’ll receive a detailed report covering all aspects of the manuscript. Structure, plot, themes, character, setting, title, voice, dialogue, POV (point of view) if applicable and market precedents. It’s a comprehensive deep dive into your manuscript.

Step 2: Follow up editing

For work previously submitted and appraised, a follow up edit makes sure you’re on the right track and may offer some further suggestions to make the work shine.

Step 3: Copy editing and/or proofreading

The final polishing step before you send your work out into the world.

What’s the difference between a manuscript appraisal, a structural edit, a copy edit and a proofread?

Good question!

We usually suggest a manuscript appraisal first. Delivered as a detailed written report, it helps you to shape and rewrite where needed. It also allows us as editors to get to know you and your project.

The aim of our appraisal is to make your work as attractive as possible to readers, naturally, and to publishers. We also work with self-publishing clients who find this service very useful. We look at the structure, plot, characters, underlying theme, voice, POV (point of view) and age range. We often give copy edit notes if you require them so that you can confidently polish the book yourself. We also look at your synopsis and any pitching documents.

A structural edit is great if you’re looking for advice on how to best structure your manuscript and get it to completion. Best suited to novels and non-fiction, this comprehensive service involves a detailed written appraisal, along with a manuscript mark up focusing on story arcs and growth of characters, and the success of how multiple plotlines intersect and work with each other.

Copy editing comes later in the process, once an author is on their final draft. Copy editing involves identifying and fixing errors related to spelling, grammar, word choices and inconsistences in the manuscript. It’s about polishing the work so that the information is delivered to the reader clearly, all while maintaining the integrity of the author’s voice and meaning.

Proofreading is the the last chance to clear up any inconsistencies before publication. Many people think they need a proofread when what they really need is a copy edit. When proofing we are mainly looking for formatting inconsistencies and we also do a final scan for spelling, grammar, and punctuation.


Picture Books:
Under 1000 words, Lucinda: $450 OR Under 1000 words, both Emma and Lucinda: $550
Early Readers up to 10,000 words: $600
10,000 – 40,000 words: $700
40,000 – 60,000: $800

60,000+: $900

First three chapters plus synopsis report: $450
Graphic Novels:
Draft up to 10,000 words with feedback on draft graphics: $600
Completed up to 40,000 words + graphics: $750
Over 40,000: POA

NOTE: All prices listed above are per manuscript, even if the books are part of a series. If you have more than
two manuscripts, we are happy to discuss a package.

For work previously submitted and appraised.
Picture Book under 1000 words: $350
Novel: POA
Ongoing follow up work: $60 an hour

Up to 10,000 words: $800
10 – 50,000 words: $1000
50,000 words+: $1500

Minimum $160 for picture books under 1000 words

$80 per 1000 words

Minimum $140 for picture books under 1000 words

$70 per 1000 words

Over the past 17 years I have run 2 publishing companies and a printing company and have worked with quite a few editors during that time. I have found no one better than Flying Pants Editing. If you’re looking for expert editors, then look no further.
They have edited a number of children’s books for me and I was blown away by the job they did. Their attention to detail was excellent and they improved the storylines, increasing the magic for children immensely. I highly recommend this service to anyone who needs editing done at a fair and reasonable price – you will not be disappointed with the result.
Thank you Emma and Lucinda

Derek Barker


I’ve written a children’s book. Now what?

Congratulations! Our manuscript appraisal covers the big picture elements of your story and we can pivot the appraisal lead by your needs.  We can copy edit if you think it is only the detail that requires work, but please get in touch and we can chat about it.

What will I receive?

You’ll receive a comprehensive written report, and, where appropriate, your manuscript with marked up notes.

What files do you work with?

We will accept your manuscript in Word or Google Doc. We accept PDFs for images and proofreading.

Do you accept rhyming manuscripts?

We do! We have worked with many writers who prefer to work in rhyme.

Who will review my manuscript?

For picture books you can choose to have your work appraised by Lucinda OR both Lucinda and Emma. There is a cost difference to reflect the work of two editors in the latter case.

For everything else, we generally work together on your manuscript. You’ll get the benefit of two editors looking at your work. 

If you’re wondering who to get in contact with, just include us both on any emails and one of us will get back to you.

I’m not sure what I need exactly...

We usually suggest a written manuscript appraisal report first, as it provides a lot of information for you as a writer and looks at everything in a detailed way, but get in touch with us and we can guide you!

Writing is more of a hobby for me. Can I work with you even though I’m not sure I want to publish?

That sounds great – even when writing is a hobby, there does come a time when you want to see if you can get even closer. We love that!

Do you only work with writers wanting to use traditional publishing?

Not at all! We have worked with a lot of self-publishers and have developed a list of tips that we share when you work with us.  

Do you provide feedback on the writing only, or also the pictures?

We met as friends at art school and both have a strong understanding of the visual aspect of any picture book.

Do you have any testimonials?

Yes we do! You’ll find some of them here.

I’ve got an idea for a story, but am not sure which direction to go.

Not sure where to head next with your manuscript and looking for ideas? Or maybe you’re not sure how your manuscript would fit in the market and are looking for help with how to approach this.

With over 25 years experience in the children’s industry, we can help you get the insight you need.