Write Your Best Story

Do you have a completed manuscript in need of polishing for either publication or submission?

Or do you have a story idea that’s just not coming together and you need someone to brainstorm with, to help you see what it is that’s missing, that “magical ingredient” that will turn this story into a bestseller?

I can help.

I specialize in helping independent authors tell their stories. My editing mantra, one I often share with my clients and author friends, is “Revision is where the magic happens.”

Revision is where the magic happens.

Making Story Magic

I first experienced the magic of revision when I sent my own first manuscript to an editor. She took that lumpy piece of clay and helped me mould it into a story I was truly proud of, and which has delighted hundreds of readers since. I fell so in love with the magic of editing that I learned to do it, too.

After studying the craft of storytelling for over twenty years and with four self-published novels under my belt, I have a thorough understanding of both the craft and the unique needs of indie authors.

Personal Writing Coach

Have you yearned to have someone give you feedback on your story that you knew was in the best interest of both you and your story?

Have you wondered what it is you can do to take both your writing and your story to the next level?

I love coaching writers to develop their story to be the best it can be, whether that is by encouraging you to dig deeper into your plot, characters, and emotions, or by helping you refine your style and sentence structure, until your story becomes a beautiful, page-turning masterpiece. I have worked with authors in a variety of genres to make their stories shine, and you could be next!

Getting Started

Are you still a bit nervous about talking to an editor? I’ve been there! But the truth is, every story needs an editor, and I am passionate about making story magic with authors like you. So please, reach out to me with your questions below and let’s talk about where we can go from here.

Please know that a query is not a commitment. I’d appreciate a chance to quote for you, but asking for a quote from me doesn’t mean you are required to hire me.

Rates are dependent on what the manuscript requires and manuscript length. Submit a sample (about 3,000 words or one chapter) to get a free mini-assessment and quote. (Get an idea of what to expect on the Editorial Freelance Association’s Rates page.)

  • I am familiar with a variety of genres, but as a developmental editor, I do best in fantasy and speculative fiction, middle grade, young adult, suspense, romance, women’s fiction, inspirational, and literary fiction. I also work with creative nonfiction such as memoirs.

  • For stylistic editing and copyediting, I have a finely tuned eye that can be applied to a wide variety of fiction as well as nonfiction.

  • I will not edit horror and erotica.

  • All of my comments are suggestions only. The final decision is always up to you.

 

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Services

Manuscript Assessment (Full or Partial)

Developmental evaluation of either the first 20 pages (5,000 words) plus synopsis OR your entire manuscript with a written assessment report.

Comments will address developmental issues like plot structure, pacing, and character development, as well as stylistic and copyediting concerns. This does NOT include in-manuscript comments and notes (which are included in a full developmental edit).

What can you learn from a partial assessment? I can tell you if you have all the pieces of your story structure in place. I can also tell you if you have writing habits that will bog down your story, consistent errors in style, whether you have a good handle on your story problem and have set it up well, and more. Usually, how the story begins, so it goes on. If I can help you begin it well (and you revise the rest to match), you will save a great deal of cash (and time) on editing the entire manuscript.

Partial assessment is $119 CAD. Full assessment will depend on the length of the manuscript.

Best for projects like these:

  • You have most or all of a completed draft and need help pulling together the final pieces or figuring out why the story seems “broken.”

  • Your beta readers have given you lukewarm or negative feedback, and you don’t really understand what the problem is.

  • You don’t have a beta reader you trust and need solid feedback on the project in general so you know how best to revise.

  • You have submitted this novel repeatedly and can’t figure out why it keeps getting rejected.

 

Full Developmental Edit

This can include two or three rounds of editing.

The first pass will focus mostly on structural and stylistic issues, editing for flow, voice, point of view, pacing, consistency, and the intended audience. Some fact checking is included, but the author is responsible for the accuracy of all facts in the manuscript.

The second pass will focus mostly on copyediting, with additional stylistic comments in edited sections. If a great deal of editing is done on this pass, a third pass for copyediting is recommended.

Comments will be given within the manuscript, and an overview report will also be included.

Best for projects like these:

  • You have a completed manuscript.

  • You are sure your story is solid. You’ve gotten feedback from beta readers or prior developmental assessments and revised your story the best you can on your own. You’re now ready for the next step to prepare for publication or submission.

  • You’re not sure if your story is solid, but you want to get in-depth feedback on the entire manuscript at once, from broad structural issues to nitty-gritty details like sentence order and grammar, rather than start with a manuscript evaluation. (Note: If this is the case, I strongly recommend starting with a manuscript evaluation, which will save you a great deal of money when you get to this step. But if this is where you’d like to start, I’ll help you.)

 

Copyediting

Usually done in a single pass, this includes editing for grammar, punctuation, spelling, and consistency of style. Includes minor substantive editing (sentence restructuring) for clarity. I am comfortable editing in either American or Canadian style.

Best for projects like these:

  • You have a story that is solid. You have a good understanding of writing craft and mechanics or have already had the work edited by someone who does to polish content, structure, and other big-picture issues.

  • All you need is someone to clean up your work and make sure you are saying exactly what you hoped to say in a way that the reader will understand, while making sure that you use words, spellings, and punctuation consistently.

 

Proofreading

This is the final work-over for a manuscript before it goes to print. This focuses on grammar, punctuation, and spelling errors in a formatted proof. I will check that your fonts and headings match, and check for errors or consistency in any other visual elements.

 
 
She didn’t just help my story become stronger, but the improvements in my writing skills have been significant.
— Jessica Renwick, Middle Grade Fantasy writer

Other Services

Blurb Writing or Development

Many writers think of the blurb as the most difficult part of the entire book, but a well-done blurb can make or break your sales. Through consultation with you, I can write your blurb for you, or coach you to polish what you’ve got. Ranges from $50-$150 CAD.

 

Story Development or Brainstorming

You’ve got the beginnings of a book, but you don’t know where to go from here. If you have a great character or story problem that you want to develop into a story, book a phone call with me to get the juices flowing. I’ll help you either develop characters to go with your problem or a log line/basic story problem that will carry you for the length of your story. $25 CAD for 30-minute session.

 

Website Proofreading

This is the same as for a manuscript proofreading, except I will go over every page of your website to check for spelling, grammar, and punctuation errors and to check for stylistic consistency.

 

Website Assessment

Everything you said was so helpful and right on. My website now communicates who I am, who my ideal client is, what I do, and how I can serve in a user-friendly way. Thanks so much!
— Melissa Keaster, wholeness coach and author

Have you built a website, but feel there are things missing? Or maybe it’s just lacking that certain sparkle you feel it needs to communicate your brand message the way you would like?

I’ll give you a detailed assessment of things that could be done better to improve flow, accuracy, and remove impediments between your message and your customers. Comments will be on navigation, ease of use, specific phrases or brand messages that may need improvement, imagery, and more. I’ll also include some comments to help you improve your SEO (Search Engine Optimization).

Make sure you are communicating clearly to your clients and engaging your target audience with this assessment!

 

If you are interested in working with me, please fill out the form below. I will reply within one business day to discuss your project and request your sample. I look forward to hearing from you!

Name *
Name
What stage is your project at? Please tell me if it has had previous editing done, and if so, what kind. Also mention whether it has had beta reader feedback.