Creative writing is a long, twisted, enigmatic process. There are many steps, often coming in a different order for different authors, but they all end up in the same place eventually: a completed draft.
Most people think coming up with and completing a story idea is the hard work, but authors know that’s just the beginning. Often the hardest part of the creative process comes after they’ve finished a draft they’re happy with: editing.
There are many different types of editing, from developmental to proofing. My focus is developmental editing.
Developmental editing is a crucial part of writing fiction. It can be enlightening, change your perspective, and even be a little painful at times. But it will always produce a tighter, more cohesive story. It comes early in the editing process because the author can expect to make both minor and major rewrites afterwards.
What I look for:
Developmental Editing focuses on big picture items for your story. I look for plot development, plot holes, genre expectations, narrator voice, dialogue, confusing description or action, and pacing. I examine your characters and help you better communicate characterization, developing relationships between the characters, and character arcs (including static arcs).
To a lesser degree, I also look at how well you’re communicating with your reader: sentence structure, word choice, clarity, and flow. These will usually be more general suggestions with a few examples selected from your work.
How I operate:
I will read your work and keep a detailed list of both my suggestions and also what I love about your book so you know what’s working and what needs work. I will provide the list to you either at the end of the edit, or in stages as I work my way through the book.
At the end of the day, my suggestions are not the final word. My comments are never instruction. They are a resource to help you decide how to make your story stronger. You are encouraged to examine my suggestions and decide for yourself if they work for your vision.
I do encourage you to think critically about any suggestion that you reject, however. At the very least, they are an opportunity for you to examine how well you are communicating your vision to me, the reader.
I will be available any time to chat about your story, as well. I love to brainstorm ideas for fixing plot holes, work out the best way to fix a particular characterization problem, or just have a laugh over a silly typo. It is important for you to click with your developmental editor so that you feel comfortable asking questions, making suggestions, or even disagreeing with me on a suggestion.
What I Read
Because it is so important for the developmental reader and the author to click, I only read genres for which I am already an audience. Romance, fantasy, humor, and adventure are my preferred genres. I also read some sci fi, paranormal (I love a great ghost story!), and women’s fiction. I read books for middle grade, young adult, new adult, and adult. For romance, I enjoy all heat levels from sweet to erotic. So bring it on.
I DO NOT READ: abusive relationships, child abuse, or animal abuse. I do not read gore porn or excessive violence. I’d consider Game of Thrones to be right at the very top of what I’ll read in terms of gore and violence. The Saw movies are too much for me.
If you’re not sure if I’m the right audience for your book, it never hurts to ask! I don’t often read sci fi, for example, but I do read some if the plot and characters really grab me. So shoot me a message and pitch your book!
I have a four year degree for Writing from The University of Central Arkansas. At the time, a creative writing major was not available, so though my focus was in creative writing, I also studied rhetoric, audience, technical writing, nonfiction, and academic writing.
Since leaving school, I have made my career in freelancing: copy writing, copy editing, and proofing. This flexible work schedule has given me the freedom to pursue my true passion: novel writing.
For developmental editing, I charge $0.003 per word. That means a 100k story would cost $300.
A 50% deposit will be required to begin the project, with the remainder due on completion. If at any time you do not feel that we click professionally, that’s totally okay! Just let me know, and I will only charge for the word count that I have completed.
When I finished the first draft of my middle-grade portal fantasy I knew that I needed feedback from an independent reader. I count myself very lucky that I found Anna. I had editors and I had beta-readers for the book. I’d known the people I worked with for quite a while and over the course of several stories.
Their feedback was wonderful, and I’m grateful, but Anna was able to approach the project without bias or expectation. She picked up on many issues that others had missed, both on the micro and macro levels. Anna offered comprehensive feedback that was clear, concise and accurate. I couldn’t argue against any of her assessments.
My novel is significantly better for her involvement. Whether it was line-edit issues, story architecture or character development, Anna was able to identify problem areas and suggest ways to ameliorate concerns. The novel was the first in a trilogy and I truly hope that Anna would be willing to assist with the second and third book as well.
Anna workshopped my science fiction novel and did an amazing job. She taught me the
basics of writing fiction when I first switched from nonfiction. Rather than trying to
reshape the story, she helped me improve the story I wanted to tell. She explored the
depths of my story, picked up on subtleties, and shared my mind set. She pointed out
plot holes, info dumping, places which needed more descriptions and places which
needed less. She did line edits. Her thorough review was incredible. I am forever in her
debt for the help she provided as I started my writing journey. I highly recommend her.