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Book editors take your story and care for it as if it were their own. They are not only incredibly passionate about the publishing industry, but also dabble in different subject matter so as to mould your writing into the most accurate and interesting read.
You may be mind-boggled by the different kinds of editing available. To clarify, developmental or substantive editing is the process where the coherence of the entire volume is analysed; this includes plot points, chapter organization, logic etc. The entire text is minutely filtered to cut off parts that aren’t needed. Copyediting is the correction of grammar, word usage, writing style and so on. Proofreading involves minor editing concerning spellings, punctuations and is usually done at the last stage.
Here’s a list of 14 top book editors in Washington D.C. who are familiar with not only fiction genres but several academic topics like health, sustainable development, policy formation etc. Be sure to go through their website properly before you contact them.
1. Holly Edgar
Based in Washington, D.C., Holly Edgar is a freelance book editor with over ten years of experience in the industry. After over eight years of experience editing for Macmillan Education, Holly has been self-employed at Holly Edgar Editorial for the last three years. She offers developmental editing and copy editing for writers working on manuscripts in British English.
Holly Edgar is able to edit fiction picture books, non-fiction children’s books, biographies, and non-fiction books on education, ELT, history, and political science. Holly Edgar is happy to take on both short- and long-term projects and is dedicated to working with clients to ensure that they can reach the desired results.
Reach out to Holly Edgar for more details!
Maxwell P. Sinsheimer is a book editor located in Washington, D.C. He has an educational background, including an undergraduate degree in English literature and a master’s degree in liberal studies from Duke University. He was awarded the James Beard Award for both Writing & Literature and Reference & Scholarship.
Maxwell P. Sinsheimer’s editorial services include developmental editing, copy editing and editorial assessment, proofreading, and query letter review. He focuses on editing non-fiction books written in American English, including biographies, as well as books on history, health, cooking, technology and true crime, among others.
Connect to Maxwell P. Sinsheimer today.
3. Rae Bryant
Situated in Washington, D.C., Rae Bryant is a book editor who also has professional writing and ghostwriting experience. Her academic background includes a master’s degree and MFA in writing, and she’s been awarded with multiple awards for her own writing, including the Curt Johnson Award and the Torch Prize.
Rae Bryant’s experience work writing allows her to connect with her writing clients. Currently, she is editor-in-chief at The Doctor T.J. Eckleburg Review, a post that she’s held for over 12 years. She can provide editing for both non-fiction biographies, non-fiction books on relationships, literary fiction, short stories, women’s fiction and young adult novels.
Contact Rae Bryant!
Emma Treadway is a book editor who works out of her location in Washington, D.C. She provides developmental editing, copy editing, editorial assessment and proofreading for writers working in American English.
Emma Treadway is a graduate of Princeton University and was editor-in-chief of The Daily Princetonian for over five years. She also has experience being a staff assistant at the U.S. House of Representatives. Writers working on biographies, non-fiction books on health, history, law, philosophy and self-improvement, science fiction and short stories should consider reaching out to Emma Treadway.
Find out more about Emma Treadway.
Located in Washington, D.C., Avery Naughton is a book editor who provides editorial services such as developmental editing, line-by-line manuscript editing, content development and project management. Writers will benefit from Avery’s attention to detail and ability to complete project on time and with enthusiasm.
Avery Naughton’s professional experience includes serving as an associate editor for National Geographic for the last 3 years. She also offers freelance editing services supporting writers working on self-help books, thrillers, mysteries and science fiction, in addition to her specialties of nature books and children’s non-fiction.
Speak to Avery Naughton!
Thierry Sagnier is a professional developmental editor living and working out of Washington, D.C. Thierry is an experienced writer himself and has been nominated for the Pulitzer Prize for his writing. He is able to support writers working on biographies and memoirs, as well as literary fiction in American English.
Thierry Sagnier is specific about his focus on developmental editing rather than copy editing. He’s also able to provide editorial services like query letter review and editorial assessment to writers. Since 2006, Thierry Sagnier has operated as a self-employed writer and developmental editor who is committed to working with his clients to improve their writing.
Learn more about Thierry Sagnier!
Washington, D.C. is home to Persia Walker, a professional self-employed book editor. She brings over three decades of experience in editing and proofreading, offering copy editing, developmental editing, proofreading and query letter review services for authors working in American English.
For the last seventeen years, Persia Walker has been freelancing at Gentle Pen Editorial Services. She is able to edit both fiction and non-fiction books, from African American fiction and women’s fiction to inspirational non-fiction and books about political science and current affairs.
Find out what else Persia Walker is able to help you with.
Brandon Coward is an independent book editor located in Washington, D.C. For the last seven years, he’s worked as a proposal editor and publications assistant at ICM Partners and Sagalyn Literary Agency, meaning that writer clients are able to rely on Brandon’s insight and experience in the publishing industry as an editor.
Rely on Brandon Coward for developmental editing, copy editing, proofreading and editorial assessment. His focus remains on non-fiction books on business, history, political science, self-improvement, sports, technology and true crime. Through both his command of grammar and writing, as well as his experience in the publishing industry, Brandon Coward’s services are a resource for all non-fiction writers.
Take a look at what else Brandon Coward can provide!
Writers in Washington, D.C. can rely on Marissa Graff for editorial support. After graduating with an MFA in writing for children and young adults from the Vermont College of Fine Arts, she began freelance editing, a position she’s held for the last four years. She has also edited for Greenhouse Literary Agency since 2015.
Writer clients can trust Marissa Graff to provide editorial services, including developmental editing and editorial assessment in American English. Writers of everything from coming-of-age and contemporary fiction to middle-grade and young-adult fantasy can go to Marissa Graff for editing support.
Check out what else Marissa Graff is able to help you with.
10. Paige Towler
Paige Towler is a book editor in Washington, D.C. Paige offers writers developmental editing, copy editing, editorial assessment and proofreading for American English books. She has experience editing for reputable organizations such as Britannica and Scholastic.
Paige Towler has worked as an editor for Smithsonian Enterprises since 2020 and has experience with research, editing and content review. Her past work experience editing for National Geographic Partners has made her a specialist in children’s non-fiction and books about nature, but she’s also able to edit books on education, parenting and books of poetry.
Start a conversation with Paige Towler!
Christina Lyons, a Communications graduate from University of Pacific in California, is a freelance editor and writer living in Washington D.C. Since 2009, she has been providing editing services for lifestyle and political content, for both print and online media. You can request copyediting or rewriting of your manuscript by filling this form on her website. Her experience of teaching, researching and working closely with teen writers allows her to understand the targeted audience of a text. She coaches editors in different techniques of refining content. Take a look at her LinkedIn profile to better understand her skills and experience.
When you take your manuscript to a professional who has been in the business for over two decades, you can’t possibly go wrong. Herta B. Feely established Chrysalis Editorial after years of being an editor. The company that took root in 2006 in the Washington D.C market provides all sorts of editorial services like line editing, developmental editing, proofreading, copyediting etc. Herta has worked on memoirs and full-length fiction novels. Emily Williamson also offers her services as a Senior Editor at Chrysalis Editorial. She has assisted authors with regards to short stories, essays and novels. If you’re manuscript falls in the category of commercial fiction, literary fiction or YA, you should get in touch with Emily. You can contact them via email or Facebook. All the details you need are on their website.
13. Lyceum Editing
With an M.A in Classics from University of Arizona, Brent A. Hill set up Lyceum Editing as a freelance editor. It is located in the Washington D.C. metro area and has been functioning since 2008. Brent A. Hill kickstarted his editing career when he trained with American Geophysical Union as a copyeditor. His expertise lies in the science, technical and other academic fields. You should contact him to discuss the possibility of him taking up your manuscript; this would also enable him to determine his rate per project. He is available on multiple platforms like Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn, as well as by phone or email. The services he provides are that of proofreading, substantive editing, copyediting and developmental editing. If you don’t know what kind of editing you’re looking for, consult him and you’ll be able to make a decision.
Dara Kaye has been working as a freelance editor as well as an employed editor at a literary agency in Washington D.C. The services she provides are copy editing, developmental editing, editorial assessment and proofreading. She graduated with an M.A in English Literature and has experience working on both fiction and nonfiction texts. Genres previously tackled include Politics & Current Affairs, YA & Teens, Fantasy, Economics, Literature, Women’s Fiction, Memoirs etc. Dara Key Editorial was started in 2011. Take a look at her selected portfolio here. You can get a quote for your manuscript after you fill in all the information regarding your book. Once that’s been dealt with, contact her via Twitter, email or Reedsy.
It takes the eye of another to unearth the beauty in your text. All of these editors in Washington D.C. have done the rounds of the publishing industry and will take over your manuscript with meticulous attention. It is upto you to take the initiative. Dig up the book you had written years before, dust it and send it to an editor, once you’ve come to an agreement with them. Before you know it, you’ll have publishable material in your hands.
A 22 year old writer from India, Meera Nair has been blogging for over 5 years. She has a triple major Bachelor’s degree in Media, English and Psychology from Christ University Bangalore. She regularly reviews books for publishers like Bloomsbury, Pan Macmillan, Penguin etc. Reading and writing are two of her utmost passions and she is glad to have the opportunity to share that love with others.