Each project starts with a written proposal that reiterates your project specifications and timing, and includes time and cost estimates. This proposal is negotiated until the terms and conditions are satisfactory to both parties; at that time a contract is finalized, signed, and the project is initiated.
I use both flat-rate and hourly rate pricing. Flat-rate pricing usually applies to CD/DVD projects where the project is very well defined—the project specifications, project timing, client responsibilities, and my responsibilities are known—and a flat rate with a "not to exceed" value is set before project initiation. Technical editing and Web site design/maintenance are usually hourly rate projects because these projects tend to be more open-ended. This is especially the case for Web site maintenance.
CD ROM/DVD Projects
I bid my CD ROM/DVD projects on a flat-rate, per-page basis, with the rate depending on the level of complexity built into the layout, hyperlinking, and interactivity requested by the client.
Current prices for CD ROM/DVD or stand-alone digital products are as follows:
Full hyperlinking/interactivity refers to hyperlinked Tables of Content, chapter or section bookmarks, figure and table citations (where "see Figure 1" or "see Table 3" is linked to the referenced figure or table, and includes a return link to the previous page), reference links, and navigational buttons that jump to various sections of the CD/DVD. For an example of this interactivity, download a sample technical paper from the Downloads page. Minimal or no hyperlinking is usually appropriate in stand-alone PDFs or small compilations where complex navigation isn't needed. An example of a PDF with minimal hyperlinking is also available on the Downloads page.
In addition to digital papers, books, or reports, a CD ROM product involves other files that complete the user interface and fulfill the user experience. These include Start/Autostart pages, hyperlinked Table of Contents, hyperlinked Indexes, Help/Tips files, and the CD artwork—cover art, CD label, and jewel case or DVD case inserts. Charges for these finishing touches vary, depending on their complexity and who generates the artwork. Whether I generate the artwork or start with yours, I create an entire CD Master product that is ready for reproduction.
Technical Editing/Writing Projects
I provide editorial services at any level of edit, from simple proofreading to complete rewriting. The more complex the task (such as rewriting a document written by multiple authors or a translated document, research and fact checking, assuring the document meets company style guidelines, etc.), the higher the hourly rate.
Current rates are between $60 and $90/hr. After a review of the material to be edited, an estimate of final charges can be made.
Desktop publishing (page layout) can involve projects as simple as a newsletter or as complex as a sales brochure, catalog, or even a book. I can provide the layout, editing, and photography to your project. If you require high-level graphics or logo design, I am affiliated with experienced graphics designers who can provide this service. Simple layout projects are charged at $50/hr; more complex designs that involve graphics or photography are charged at $80/hr (not including the charges of outside design services).
Web Site Projects
Web site design is charged at an hourly rate and depends on the complexity of the site. Standard HTML sites are charged at $50/hr; database-driven, interactive sites (written in PHP language) are charged at $80/hr. If the desired site is well defined at project onset (number of pages, images, and features), I can provide a "not to exceed" value before project initiation. Web site maintenance (updates after the initial design is completed and made live) is charged at $50/hr.