Editing Services

I am a full-time writer and English Teacher (TEFL qualified with a Distinction) and now offer the best quality editing and ghost writing services. Yes, that’s right! With me, you get the whole package! You get the first ten pages of editing FREE!

Lazlo Ferran

Lazlo Ferran

Background

I have been writing for ten years and my experience has taught me what makes a truly amazing novel! This experience has not been gained without pain but I can save you some of this pain.

Everything comes down to two factors; 1) a good story and 2) good presentation. If you have a good story, you are more than halfway there. Good presentation starts with good editing and, as many successful writers will tell you, a writer is not the best person to edit their own work. Writers are usually too close to their book; they miss mistakes because they know what they wanted to say and this is what they see!

If English is not your native language, I can help you with an entrée to the English-speaking market at no extra cost, something not many editors will provide. Two of my previous clients did not speak English as their native language and both were very happy with the results. Even dyslexia is not a barrier, if you can write a good story.

I am an avid reader of all types of fiction and historical books and would love to help you develop your own work. I work fast and insist on reading your book and getting to know it properly before starting. If you would like help with whatever you are writing, contact me with details of your book. I need to know the word count, subject (genre) and intended publishing format (eBook/paperback or both).

Your first ten pages are FREE!

What you Get

I will proofread and copy edit the first ten pages of your book free of charge. There is no hurry! Take it away and think about it.

Below, you will find pricing options for the services that I can offer you. These are provided simply as a guide. If I edit your whole book, we can create a customized payment plan to fit your budget. I work very quickly and if I provide all three types of editing service to you at the same time so the results can be achieved more quickly. I provide all three editing services for a 60,000-100,000 word novel for £899, much less than separately (typically this would be £1100 for a 60,000 word novel). Be sure to ask about my special rates on series. I will always put in that extra little bit of effort to make sure your book is as good as it can be.
Books are my passion so I will always put your book first!

Contact me
Contact me with questions or to discuss pricing options at lazloferran@gmail.com

Thank you.

My specialities are:

  1. European High Medieval history (12th Century and 15th Century), especially settings in France and England.
  2. World War two, particularly in reference to aviation.
  3. Aviation history from 1936 to the present day.
  4. Science fiction, particularly high tech.
  5. Central Asian culture.
  6. The music business, especially the busking and the London rock scene in the ’80s and ’90s.
  7. Vampire history.
  8. Werewolf history.

Lowest Prices and Best Value:

Editing

  1. Proofreading = £5/hr – I will check for and marking up typographic mistakes for you. This is roughly £0.0075 per word. The rate is lower if I provide you with 2 and 3 as well.
  2. Copy editing = £6/hr – Offering suggestions for improved grammar. ( I am also a specialist in Medieval English language and Medieval history in general, WWII and Physics/science). The rate is lower if I provide you with 1 and 3 as well.
  3. Development and substantive editing = £8/hr – Make use of my ability to structure your novel for greatest impact. I offer advice on ‘deep edits’ to your work to make the most of plot, character development and pace changes. Expect major changes and some work on your end but this will lift your writing to a new level. It will always save you time and money, if you engage the development editor at the earliest opportunity, even before you start writing.
  4. Total Editing Package = All three types of editing for a 60,000 -100,000 word novel typically about £899 inclusive.

Which type of editing do you need? Take a look here to get an idea.

Ghost Writing

  • Service = £6/hr

Contact me: lazloferran@gmail.com

My biography can be found here or in the menu above. Below is a list of books I have edited.

Follow this blog to read informative posts about my editing experiences.  Check out the first article here!

Portfolio

The Journals of Raymond Brooks.

Amit Bobrov is a great writer from Israel. His first fantasy novel is the first volume of a sweeping epic.

journalscover

Testimonial from Amit Bobrov:

“Lazlo’s the best editor I’ve worked with, and I’ve worked with a few. He took an already successful novel and found every imaginable flaw, corrected dialogues, fixed my grammar and altered key scenes to make them more exiting. He’s a fountain of creativity and knowledge. When I showed my Publisher his version of my novel they were speechless and this was a novel that three previous editor worked on.”

Baghdad Zombies

Only available in kindle, this is from a new writer Lami Kamikaze. Its very funny and takes an unusual view of the conflicts shaping the modern world.

coverimageTestimonial from Lami Kamikaze:

“Around three years ago, I wanted to write a novel. However, I was very afraid to write because English is not my first language. I was very lucky that Lazlo Ferran agreed to edit my book for free and encouraged me to keep writing. I wouldn’t be writing my first full novel today if he had demanded a fortune to edit my book. I would be happy to pay Lazlo Ferran for my full novel as he showed he is passionate about his work by correcting my story for free. He did not demand a fortune unlike other editors, whose work and integrity I sometimes doubt.”

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Win ebook: Who might equal Shakespeare in the 21st century?

Lazlo Ferran Competition: Who might equal Shakespeare in the 21st Century?

Who might equal Shakespeare in the 21st Century?

Win ebook: Who might equal Shakespeare in the 21st century?

See further down for competition to win a free copy of my next eBook.

Here is the latest news…

Editing
I have just finished editing an illustrated novel for a very talented new writer. It’s very exciting work and I can’t wait to see the finished product but it is all top secret at the moment. I will announce the book here when it’s published.

New Novels
I have the basic framework for two scifi novels in my head and of course there is the second Wartime novel and the third installment of the Ordo Lupus series, both of which are with publishers and agents. I am hoping for to get signed but, if not, I will publish myself. If you want the very latest on release dates, competitions and free offers, sign up for the Newsletter. The next issue will go out in late September or early October.

It’s no secret that I am working hard on a new novel. It’s a romance set between the end of WWII and the Korean War and a work of literary nature, a genre I have only dabbled with in the past with The Ice Boat. The genre is highly competitive and readers expect an extremely high standard. Think Shakespeare, Dickens, Thomas Hardy, The Brontes, George Elliot, Jane Austin, D H Lawrence and Harper Lee and you will see what I mean. I don’t know who would qualify for that from 21st Century writers. Answers in your comments please! Best answer will get a free copy of my next published novel!

Keeping up to date with Lazlo Ferran

Ordo Lupus and the Temple Gate - Extended Edition coverHi All
I wanted to let you know that I will only be posting every second Monday from now on. I have to focus very hard on my latest novel and the real world tends to intrude as well so I don’t have to much time.

If you really want exclusive inside information on what I am working on, what is coming up, competitions freebies AND THREE FREE THRILLERS, then you need to sign up for the Lazlo Newsletter.

You will always find a page with the link to the Newsletter in the menu at the top of all my blog pages.

North Korea – The Korean War

Kim Jong-un - Supreme Leader of North Korea

Kim Jong-un – Supreme Leader of North Korea

First of all, because this is a post which includes information about air warfare, I would like to extend my heartfelt sympathies to the families of victims from the terrible Shoreham Air Show crash on Saturday.

I am working hard on a new book. I don’t want to reveal the plot but I will give you a clue:

With all the tension between North Korea and South Korea at the moment, it’s sad for me to think that my father fought for the United Nations trying to push back the oppressive North Korean regime when it invaded the South in 1950. Lim Jong-un has taken over from his father now but sadly, the regime still starves its citizens and shakes its fist at other countries. Of course the conflict has a complex history and if you don’t know much about it, here is what wikipedia says about the Korean War:

The Korean War (in South Korean Hangul: 한국전쟁, Hanja: 韓國戰爭, Hanguk Jeonjaeng, “Korean War”; in North Korean Chosungul: 조국해방전쟁, Joguk Haebang Jeonjaeng, “Fatherland Liberation War”; 25 June 1950 – 27 July 1953)[31][a][33] was a war between North and South Korea, in which a United Nations force led by the United States of America fought for the South, and China fought for the North, which was also assisted by the Soviet Union. The war arose from the division of Korea at the end of World War II and from the global tensions of the Cold War that developed immediately afterwards.

Here are some interesting facts about the Korean War (1950 – 1953):

  1. The Korean War was the first military action of the Cold War.
  2. There are still more than 7,000 U.S. soldier missing in action from the war.
  3. Although the British Army was present on the ground, the RAF had no squadrons based in Korea. They did however suffer casualties because pilots exchanged with pilots from the United States Air Force (USAF) and the Royal Australian Air Force (RAAF), both having squadrons present.
  4. The North Korean pilots flew many MiG-15s, generally reckoned to be the best jet fighter at the time. I outclassed by a large margin the RAF’s best jet fighter, the Gloster Meteor, which may have been a reason the RAF did not want to send its squadrons there.
  5. The RAAF did however send it’s own Meteors, making its pilots sitting ducks.
  6. Even the USAF’s best fighter, the F-86 Sabre, was no match for the faster and more agile MiG-15 for the first year of the War. Later updates allowed the American fighter to deal with the Russian jet on a more equal basis.
  7. The Russians denied they had their own pilots in Korea but it is highly likely that they did. None were ever take prisoner to prove this.
  8. The MiG-15 used a copy of the Rolls Royce designed Nene engine. The British had give the Russians 25 Nene engines in 1946 as a political gesture of good will, believing it would take the Russians too long to copy the engine for them to be threat. The Russians tricked the British and worked out the secrets so fast that they had the MiG-15 flying within 2 years. It went on to be the most successful jet fighter of all time, thanks mainly to the British-designed engine, while the British never used the engine themselves in large numbers. Some MiG-15s are still in service today with the The Korean People’s Army Air Force (North Korean air force).
  9. The Korean War took a heavy toll—up to a total of 5 million dead, wounded, or missing, and half of them civilians.
  10. North Koreans who were born after the Korean War in the late 1950s are on average about 2 inches shorter than South Koreans.
  11. During the Korean War, the South Korean government provided women for its troops. According to one account, the government standard of performance for such women was to service at least 29 men a day. Intercourse should not last longer 30 minutes so the prostitute could move on to other men and make the maximum daily profit. There is heated and ongoing debate about how much the U.S. military was involved in providing prostitutes for its men.
  12. The U.S. Army used approximately 1,500 dogs during the Korean War and 4,000 in the Vietnam War.
  13. There were 7,245 American POWs during the Korean War. Of these, 2,806 died while in captivity and 4,418 were eventually returned to military control. Twenty-one refused repatriation.
  14. An estimated 86,300 Korean War veterans are women, making up 7% of the estimated number of all female veterans.
  15. According to the 1990 Census, of the 4.9 million Korean War veterans in the U.S., 4.5 million (92%) were white; 339,400 (7%) were African American; 30,400 (less than 1%) were American Indian, Eskimo, or Aleut; 39,300 (less than 1%) were Pacific Islander; and 35,000 were of other races. There were an estimated 133,500 Hispanic (who may be of any race) Korean War veterans.
  16. The world’s first all-jet dogfight occurred ruing the Korean War on September 8, 1950.
  17. The United States still keeps troops in South Korea in case North Korea ever attempts to invade again.
  18. The capital of South Korea, Seoul, changed hands four times during the Korean War. It was first captured by the North Koreans on June 28, 1950, and then retaken by UN forces that September. The Chinese seized the city in January 1951, but gave it up two months later.
  19. One of the most brutal battles of the Korean War was the Battle of Chosin Reservoir, fought from November 27 to December 13, 1950. What made it different from other fierce fighting was the intensely cold and bitter weather. Temperatures dropped to -54° F. One survivor of the battle designed a bumper sticker that read: “Once Upon a Time Hell Froze Over. We Were There.
  20. Up until WW II, Korea had been one nation, known as the Korean Peninsula, and was part of Japan. After WW II, the winners of the war divided it into two countries. The Soviet Union took the northern half, and the U.S. took control of the southern half. It was divided at the 38th parallel.
  21. In occupied areas of North Korea, the North Korean Army executed every educated person (such as those who held education, government, and religious positions) who could lead a resistance against North Korea.
  22. One of the very few films that deals seriously with the Korean War’s political causes is The Year of Living Dangerously, starring Mel Gibson

Source: Random Facts

Vote: Which is the Best Scfi Vehicle Ever?

Sulaco from Aliens

Sulaco from Aliens

Now you can vote! 3 votes each. Vote closes 5pm Monday 29 June. Enjoy!

There were 2 nominations:

The Sulaco from Aliens (1986)
Moya (sentient being) from Farscape

अब आप मतदान कर सकते हैं! 3 वोट प्रत्येक। मतदान सोमवार 29 जून 17:00 बंद कर देता है। आनंद लें!

Jetzt können Sie abstimmen! 3 Stimmen je. Vote schließt 05.00 Montag, 29. Juni statt. Viel Spaß!

Maintenant, vous pouvez voter! 3 voix chacun. Clôture du scrutin 17 heures le lundi 29 Juin. Profitez!

Ahora usted puede votar! 3 votos cada uno. Voto cierra 17:00 Lunes 29 de junio. Disfrute!

اب آپ ووٹ دے سکتے ہیں! 3 ووٹ سے ہر ایک. ووٹ کریں پیر، 29 جون 5pm کے بند کر دیتا ہے. کا لطف اٹھائیں!

Poll: Which is the best Scifi Vehicle Ever?

Elevator vehicle under Fireflash from Thunderbirds

Elevator vehicle under Fireflash from Thunderbirds

Another great vote this week; which is the best scifi vehicle of all time?

The choice is HUGE but below are just a few suggestions to get you started. Please nominate your favourites by commenting here or tweet me @Lazlo_F or message me on Facebook. The nomination deadline will be 22 June at 5pm. Then we will vote!

Ein weiterer großer Stimme in dieser Woche; Welches ist das beste SciFi Fahrzeug aller Zeiten?

Die Auswahl ist riesig Gewinn Hier sind nur ein paar Vorschläge, um Ihnen den Einstieg. Bitte benennen Sie Ihre Favoriten von hier zu kommentieren oder tweet ich Lazlo_F gold Nachricht auf mich Facebook. Der Nominierungsfrist wird am 22. Juni 17.00 Uhr sein. Dann werden wir abstimmen!

Un autre grand vote cette semaine; qui est le meilleur véhicule de scifi de tous les temps?

Le choix est énorme, mais ci-dessous sont quelques suggestions pour vous aider à démarrer. S’il vous plaît nommer vos favoris en commentant ici ou tweet moi Lazlo_F ou un message moi sur Facebook. La date limite de mise en candidature sera de 22 Juin à 17 heures. Ensuite, nous allons voter!

もう一つの大きな票今週。これはすべての時間の中で最高のscifi車である。

選択は巨大ですが、以下の作業を始めるためのちょうどいくつかの提案です。ここにコメントすることによってあなたのお気に入りを指名するか、上で私 Lazlo_Fコードまたはメッセージを私にツイートしてください。 Facebook のコード。指名締め切りは午後5時で6月22日になります。その後、我々は投票する!

एक अन्य महान वोट इस सप्ताह; जो सभी समय का सबसे अच्छा scifi वाहन है।

विकल्प बहुत बड़ा है, लेकिन नीचे तुम शुरू कर बस कुछ सुझाव हैं। Lazlo_F यहाँ टिप्पणी करके अपने पसंदीदा में मनोनीत या मुझे ट्वीट करें। या संदेश मुझ पर Facebook

Elevator Vehicles from Thunderbirds

The SPV from Captain Scarlet

The Star Ship Enterprise

The X-Wing Starfighter from Star Wars

Darth Vader’s TIE Advanced x1

Landmaster from Damnation Alley (crap film but good vehicle)

Discovery One from 2001: Space Odyssey

The Eagle Transporter from space 1999

Arguably not a vehicle but still cool – the Power Loader from Aliens

The Tom Cruise Audi from Minority Report (this is a view from the front)

The Lawmaster MC01 Y349 – 221 from Dredd

1966 Batmobile (this one gets my pulse going)

1989 Batmobile

The Tumbler from Bat Man

Thunderbirds 2 from Thunderbirds

The Mole from Thunderbirds

I could go on all day but now it’s over to you. Nominate your favourite!

Should a hero be a Brando or a Martin Freeman?

Marlon Brando in The Young Lions

Marlon Brando in The Young Lions

Superhero or Everyman?

I woke up this morning wondering what to blog about and I decided the best post would be about the subject of my pondering at the moment; what makes a good hero?

Everyone (well, in the West anyway) will know who Marlon Brando is, possibly the greatest and certainly one of the greatest actors of all time. Martin Freeman plays Bilbo Baggins in the recent Hobbit films.

I am as big a fan of Bilbo as anybody and nobody can deny Bilbo is the hero of The Hobbit. What is more, he is an ‘everyman.’ What that means is that everyone can identify with his situation because he is just a normal guy. Brando, on the other hand, rarely plays normal guys; from The Wild One to Superman and Apocalypse Now, nearly all his characters are superhuman or out-and-out rebels; men on the edge of society.

Here are my reviews of two of his films that I watched recently. After you have read these, I will ask the question again:

Marlon Brando in The Young Lions

I have been trying to view this 1958 film since my father watched it and recommended it, about ten years ago. He is not a huge fan of Brando and not one to recommend films very often so my interest was piqued. The film proved hard to find; a trip to Virgin and HMV in Oxford Street(at the time) produced nothing and not been able to stream it on-demand since. I tend to watch films when I am in the mood; one day a film might be just what I want, the next day what I definitely don’t want so ordering it from Amazon just wasn’t gonna work for me. A friend finally got it for me and so I was set.

The film starts promisingly enough with Brando, as Christian, a young German ski-instructor, wooing the delicious Hope Lange. But then we are ‘treated’ to nearly half an hour of very mundane acting by Dean Martin (only recently out of his partnership with Jerry Lewis) and a struggling Montgomery Clift. I have seen Clift acting well but for the first hour in this film, he is wooden or overwrought by turns. His tone is so misjudged, I found it hard to watch and Martin is of course not an actor of even Clift’s calibre.

I was beginning to lose hope that we would see Brando on form but he finally reappeared, now as an SS officer in Paris. He meets a friend who sets him up on a blind date with a French girl, whose husband has been killed by the Nazis. “Okay; fireworks! ” I hear you say and you’d be right, She throws the wine Brando just bought her in his face and Christian, with his oft-employed stoic look, listens to her rant without comment for what must be a couple of minutes of screen gold.

Of course he is so tolerant and charming that she has to forgive him in the end and they strike a flame together. Christian has to arrest a Jewish boy but reacts by refusing to make any more arrests and risks a firing squad when ge confronts his commanding officer.

“Ah this is the Brando we love!” I thought. “A rebel within the SS! What a gem!”

His commanding officer takes pity on Christian’s humanity and sends him on an errand to deliver a silk nightie to his own wife, back in Berlin. Brando is happy to get some leave and thus meets the gorgeous and Deitrich-like May Britt. With half-lidded eyes she tells him he can sleep on the couch and help himself to as much schnapps as he can hold while she beds a general.

Christian takes up her offer and later beds her but he doesn’t like her and nor does she care for him.

The strange relationship tension between Christian and his commander weaves a thread right through the film to near the end when Christian has to deliver another gift to Britt’s character in a ruined Berlin. This time, he can’t even find pity for her and takes out his pent up rage about the pointless war on her.

Of course Martin and Clift have parts which run parallel to Brando’s but while theirs is the simple story of all-american-boys making good in the war, albeit a Jewish underdog in the case of Clift, these only serve to highlight just how unusual and complex Brando’s part is. No doubt he worked hard to accentuate this but he hardly needed to; his acting alone lifts the film far beyond what it might otherwise be. He looks the part as the blonde-haired SS uber-soldier but of course he has a weakness in the eyes of his superiors – he is human.

The final scenes play out in, and around a liberated concentration camp. The film is poignant for the inclusion of Clift’s Jew liberating such a horror and Brando delivers a final scene that tops even that (as you would expect) and I am not giving it away.

All in all, well worth a watch if you like a war movie with a little Brando to spice it up! Oh and watch out for a very early performance from Lee van Cleef as a drill sergeant.

The Brave

I watched this 1997 film simply because it is one of the few Brando movies I haven’t seen and it was available on Youtube. I didn’t expect too much from this, the only full-length Johnny Depp directed film to date, although it also has Johnny Depp in the lead role and a cameo from Brando so I expected to at least be competent.

I quickly realised that this film was so obscure and unloved by Hollywood that I could watch it free not because it was bad but because of the subject matter. It’s certainly not an uplifting movie and no doubt the distributors and marketing people had their heads in their hands on this one!

Depp plays a Mexican Indian who is struggling to support his small family on a reserve that essentially survives by recycling stuff from the municipal dump of white people. In and out of jail all his life, he is offered the chance to ‘star’ in a snuff movie for Brando’s McCarthy. He takes the job, knowing it will pay to rehouse his family and educate his children but later regrets it.

The scenes in the rubbish dump are harrowing; Depp’s family sleeping in a tiny caravan, surrounded by waste and his trips further and further up river to find clean water, which he collects in plastic pales hung from a yoke over his back, turned my stomach.

His life is so bad, you can almost understand why he takes up the snuff movie offer… almost … but not quite. When he visits McCarthy in a downtown warehouse he sees the iron torture chair he will be strapped into for the first time. I could barely watch from this point on. Depp underplays his role, playing the stoic American Indian brave trapped in a sick world by uttering very few words, instead using facial expressions silence to communicate his feelings of entrapment.

Brando is incredible! He rolls himself into the warehouse in a wheelchair, while playing a sad blues tune on a harmonica (for real; Brando was a highly accomplished musician, drummer and dancer) and proceeds to take apart the whole concept of death, to the point that he makes it almost sound like a higher-calling. Of course Depp’s character isn’t fooled but he takes the cash and McCarthy tells him to come back in a week.

“Why would you trust me to come back?” Depp asks him (I am paraphrasing here)

“I have a feeling for people; a sensitivity. A man, such as yourself, a man of spirit, is a man of honour.”

This movie is well-worth watching if you care at all about the struggle of some communities to overcome prejudice and inequality. It is heart-breaking to watch what one man has to contemplate in order to provide for his family. I am not very tolerant of pain myself and McCarthy’s answer; “It depends on how much you can take,” when Depp’s character asks him how much he will get, really made me squirm. I simply cannot put this film out of my mind. Of course if you are a person who likes to see the world through rose-tinted glasses, don’t watch this film. But don’t ever look behind you again.

That’s the reviews over. Now back to the question. I am thinking about my next book and it often helps me to think of a Hollywood actor when planning the main character’s role. Here I have got a bit stuck; I see a plot with an old-time Hollywood actor called William Holden. I guess in some ways you could say he is like Martin Freeman in that you probably wouldn’t pick say he was a flamboyant character or would stand out in a crowd.

The trouble is, I worry that such a book would not have a wide enough appeal because the character is not larger-than-life. I get the feeling big epic themes need big epic characters and I wonder if a Brando/Pacino/Russell Crowe type character would work better.

Which type of character do you like best? Let me know by commenting below or @Lazlo_F or on Facebook.