A developmental edit focuses on the big picture. When I perform a developmental edit I'm looking at things like characterization, plot development, setting, narrative voice, pacing, and organization. My job is to help you polish and refine your manuscript, working out any large-scale problem material it may have to help get it ready for publication. Developmental edits are perfect for people working on their first novel, anyone looking for an unbiased sounding board, and writers and authors interested in self-publishing.
What to expect from a developmental edit:
I will mark up your electronic manuscript with my comments and suggestions, highlighting any areas that need heavy revision. Along with the manuscript notations I will also include a five to ten page developmental letter (or manuscript critique) that explains in greater detail any issues I may have found with character development, setting, plot, etc. The goal is to point out any large-scale areas in your manuscript that need attention to improve your manuscript's chances of selling. If I find obvious copyediting issues I may mark them as well, but smaller problems are not the focus during a developmental edit since a large area revision following a developmental edit may often removes the copyediting issues in question.