This hasn't really been a problem, but I feel like it's going to come up in the future. How do you personally handle your editing process?
If I think a client is going to be difficult, I usually let them know upfront that I include one significant revision of a piece. Considering that I'm mostly doing cheap blog posts at the moment, it hasn't been an issue. Is there a better approach, maybe? Am I not being reasonable?
Also, how long do you personally wait for a client to submit edits? Do you have a timeline? Or does it differ with each contract? Thanks!
It's reasonable and a good idea to specify what's included in a fixed-price contract. I usually specify one round of revisions and call out specific items that aren't included (typesetting, cover design, etc.). But I'm also somewhat flexible if it's a good relationship and it's not overboard.
For hourly contracts, I don't worry about it unless we've agreed on a cap to the hours.
Every proposal/contract should include a clear statement of your revision policy--don't save that for when you expect a client to be difficult. I offer one round of revisions as needed on fixed price projects. Some freelancers offer more, and some offer none.
The exception for me is when I am embarking on the creation of a site or an ongoing blogging relationship. In that situation, I specify unlimited revisions for the first page or post, because I want to use that time to make sure I know exactly what the client wants. After that, it's fairly rare to get revision requests on subsequent pages/posts for the same client.
I clarify the difference between a copyedit and a revision on top of stating that I only perform one copyedit per milestone. But, I'm also adamant about detailing the scope of work prior to agreeing to a contract.
Most of my writing clients are coming to me for both consultation and writing/editing. So, the "authoritative ball" is in my court, so to speak.