Selecting a book editor is like choosing a partner.
They have to complement you; they have to be your strongest critic and your most ardent supporter.
And you both need to have the same end goal in life- getting your manuscript ready for publication.
It is vital that you learn all the levels of editing before you approach a book editor so you can ensure what you need is covered in their services.
Book editors often offer four types of services.
Developmental editing is looking at the story, the characters and the plot in terms of big picture. If those are well etched, your book is on its right path.
Line editing or substantive editing is reading every line, removing or changing them so the entire book sounds good. This is a stylistic form of editing.
Copy editing is often clubbed with line editing by editors, as it involves correcting punctuation, grammar and spelling.
Proof reading is often the last level of editing when it’s all ready and just needs to be given a check for wrong spellings, facts or consistency.
So now you know what a book editor does, all you need to do is find the right book editor for your book.
There is no need to panic because we have compiled a list of 19 top non-fiction book editors to help authors and writers.
After gaining extensive editing experience at a renowned London-based publishing house, Meredith decided to start her freelancing career in 2004 – because of this, Meredith Tennant Editorial was established. She lives in Charlottesville, Virginia, and some of her services are content editing, line editing, and proofreading. In terms of nonfiction, she edits art books, self-help books, memoirs, and biographies. However, cookbooks remain her passion, which is why she provides special services and tips for this category only. Novels are of interest as well. Since every project is unique, you will have to reach Meredith to get a quote.
2. C.S. Lakin
C.S. Lakin is a successful and professional non-fiction book editor. She knows the importance of getting your book critiqued or reviewed by a book editor to get an unbiased opinion about your book. You can approach her to edit or just critique your book – this will enable you to view it with clarity. She also does private consultations for authors who believe they need to connect on a one-on-one basis. Her services include proof reading, content editing and manuscript critique. You can fill this form to contact her and to learn more about services.
Mikaela Pederson has been an editor for over 5 years, a time during which she has helped both first time writers and previously published authors improve their manuscripts. Working in tandem with authors, encouraging open conversation rather than her ordering or making changes, Mikaela edits fiction and non-fiction. She connects with the author, and, instead of changing the story, she uses the writer’s instincts to shape it and give it a distinctive voice. She offers a free sample edit, so all you have to do is write to her and tell her a little about yourself and your book.
4. Liz Dexter
Liz Dexter is a writer and editor based in Birmingham, UK. Besides having written books on business, marketing, transcription, and employment, Liz can provide editing, proofreading, copywriting, and copy typing services, to give a few examples. She knows the value of honesty and experience, so she tries to discuss relevant issues, like grammar, tone, and flow on her blog. You can contact her by filling this form or send her an email to learn more about her services and eligibility.
Philip Athans has been an editor for 30 years, during which he has collaborated with innumerable authors on successful projects, including bestsellers. The great thing about Philip is that he won’t just assess your book or writing, but he will also remind you what’s great about it, and how your writing style can improve without changing your personality or compromising your beliefs. Philip mainly edits fiction and non-fiction. He also offers coaching services, in case you’re stuck and need guidance. You can contact him via email to discuss your project and get a rate card.
6. Roz Morris
Roz Morris is an author and editor who has previously worked with literary consultancies, but who now works on a freelance basis. Eager to work with both amateur and experienced writers, Roz enjoys the challenge of seeing a book through fresh eyes. She also teaches creative writing in London. She doesn’t encourage spoon feeding her clients or bullying them into following her recommended changes. Roz edits non-fiction, memoirs, and fiction. She wants to work in a cohesive partnership with writers and offer them honest feedback about their manuscript. Write to her via email by telling her a little about you and your project.
Victoria Mixon is a freelance editor of fiction, poetry, and non-fiction. Handling limited clientele, she is a committed and persevering editor who treats her writers and authors honestly and efficiently. Because she picks few projects at a time, she requests interested authors and writers to know why they picked Victoria or why they wish to work with her. You can write to her via email to know more about the copy and line editing services she provides.
Owner and founder of Barbara McNichol Editorial, Barbara has been editing books since 1994. Specializing in non-fiction, she has edited over 350 books. Whether you’re an amateur writer or a seasoned author, Barbara’s keen sense of clarity and writing can benefit you and your manuscript. Her passion of writing has led to her holding writing workshops and providing programs for authors. Specializing in editing self-help, business, memoirs, spirituality, and healthcare books, to give a few examples, Barbara is based in Tucson. You can write to Barbara via email to learn more details about her editing services and prices.
Allister Thompson is a professional publishing consultant, writer, and freelance editor at Allister Thompson Editorial. He started his editing career in 1997 in Toronto, Ontario, where he still lives, and has extensive experience in working on both fiction and nonfiction projects. Religion, biography, history, and business are just a few of the genres you will find in his portfolio. Allister provides substantive editing, copy editing, proofreading, and a few other services that can be found here. If you want to request a quote, make sure to send him your project details by completing this form.
10. Michelle Hope
Living in Seattle, Washington, Michelle Hope is an editor at Michelle Hope Editing, as well as a writer with experience in trade publishing and an MFA in Fiction. She is open to working on projects of both fiction and nonfiction – from cookbooks to thrillers, Michelle can improve any manuscript. This is rather predictable, as she has so far edited more than 200 titles. Developmental editing, copy editing, proofreading, project management, and publishing consultation are the services she provides. Since she doesn’t charge standard fees, you will have to request a quote here, if you’re interested in collaborating with her.
Living in Iowa City, Iowa, Elisabeth Chretien started her freelance editing business after gathering extensive experience in the field. Her excellent skills are proven by the fact that several of the titles she edited have received awards – for instance, “Tales from an Uncertain World: What Other Assorted Disasters Can Teach Us About Climate Change”, by L.S. Gardiner is the 2019 3rd place winner of the Indie Book Awards, in the nonfiction category. Elisabeth can provide developmental editing, copy editing, and proposal review, to give a few examples. In terms of genres, she is specialized in memoir, nonfiction, and fiction books. If you’d like to request a quote, you can do it here.
12. Signe Jorgenson
Signe Jorgenson is the owner of Signe Jorgenson Editorial Services, and a professional editor and writer based in Sheboygan, Wisconsin. Besides providing freelance services, she is also a nonfiction editor at the Stoneboat Literary Journal and at Pebblebrook Press. Signe is specializes in editing fiction and nonfiction books, and she also helps writers prepare business documents, articles, and dissertations, to give a few examples. Poetry and memoir are two of her areas of expertise as well. Her services include copy editing, developmental editing, and proofreading, but she is also experienced in line editing, academic editing, and resume writing. If you’d like to collaborate with Signe, you can request a quote here.
Christine Van Zandt is based in Los Angeles, California, and she established Write for Success Editing Services in 2009. Due to her experience, she is able to provide services for projects in any genre. Whether it’s children or adults, Christine has worked with writers of every age, so don’t be afraid to send her your work even if you’re younger. Specialized in developmental editing, her list of services also includes proofreading, copy editing, ghostwriting, coaching, and formatting. Unfortunately, there are no standard prices displayed on her website – as each project is unique, Christine will have to analyze the amount of work that your book requires before sending you a quote. If you’re interested in working with an editor who has their office in Hollywood, feel free to reach her via email.
Based in Nashville, Tennessee, Andrew McFadyen-Ketchum is the founder of AndrewMK, a business through which he provides manuscript evaluation ($0.01/word), developmental editing & coordination ($75/hour), substantive editing ($0.03/word), line editing ($0.05/word), copy editing ($0.015/word – $0.25/word), and proofreading ($0.01/word). His genres of choice are nonfiction, creative nonfiction, children’s books, and poetry, to give a few examples. However, Andrew has experience in working on almost any type of project – from short stories to college admission essays, he can improve them all. Besides being a freelance editor, he is also a successful ghostwriter, author, and an acquisitions editor for Upper Rubber Boot Books. If interested, you can contact him here for more information.
Susan Mary Malone thinks an editor’s job isn’t just to cut, trim, and edit, then leave the book, but it means reading, researching, coaching, editing, polishing, proof reading, and finally taking the completed manuscript to interested publishers and literary agents. She started Malone Editorial Services to offer her comprehensive and complete editorial services from the start to the end (it getting published) as a book editor, coach and mentor. She’s an award winning author writing since 1993, and has condensed those experiences in tips that can benefit new writers and authors. Contact Susan by email to learn about her prices for the services she offers.
Jessi Rita Hoffman has editing experience of over 14 years, and is specialized in both fiction and nonfiction. Offering developmental editing, copy editing, proof reading, coaching, ghost writing, critique, and any other services needed for your manuscript to reach its best form, Jessi treats her clients like family. This can be seen in the glowing testimonials offered by her previous clients and writers. This Seattle-based editor has extensive experience in working on Christian, business, health, , humor, how-to, and education books, to give a few examples. A published author and screenwriter, Jessi has edited books for Donald Trump, Michael Hurley and Dr Peter Field. You can contact her via email anytime.
17. Lorraine Reguly
Lorraine Reguly launched Wording Well as a way to use her talents in a beneficial manner. Listed as a top copywriting expert by Blogtrepreneur, Lorraine edits, writes, and teaches English. Her blog and website have been awarded for the useful tips and information available for bloggers, writers, business owners, and publishers. Her practical approach and extensive knowledge is evident through the testimonials offered by her previous clients. You can contact Lorraine in Ontario via email to know more about the editing services.
18. Debra Hartmann
Debra Hartmann of The Pro Book Editor is on our list for a reason. Along with her team, she provides a wide range of services, among which we can name proofreading, line editing, copy editing, developmental editing, and critique. Judging by her testimonials, Debra has certainly helped numerous authors reach their full writing potential. Although there are no fees listed on her website, you should know that she has compared her prices with the industry standard to emphasize the savings an author would make if they chose Debra for their non-fiction book – to learn more about this, you can request a quote and a free sample edit via email. Make sure to read these instructions before reaching Debra.
19. Chantel Hamilton
Specializing in developmental editing, Chantel Hamilton of Afterwords Communications is a writer and editor. She mostly works on non-fiction projects which tackle topics such as business, memoir, and self-help. Chantel prefers to start her collaborations with authors as soon as possible when it comes to the creative process – this means that you don’t have to wait until you finish your manuscript to send it to her. Her books have made their way to the bestseller lists, thanks to her expertise and sharp editorial skills. Email her to start a discussion regarding her editing services, and she will respond in two days at most.
That’s our list of top 19 non-fiction book editors. I would recommend you go with the editor you can trust. You can choose the right editor by giving them a sample and getting a free edit done. A lot of experienced and professional editors often agree for a free edit as it lets them see your manuscript and lets you get a sense of how they work. You can also go through their credentials and testimonials provided by previous clients to gauge their quality of work. The onus is on you for doing the research because you know the stage your manuscript is at and the amount of help required to complete, polish and ready it.
Are you a non-fiction book editor? Tell us more about your services in the comments box below!
Shikha Pandey is a creative, content and script writer based in Mumbai, India.