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Our Book Editors

From the world’s major publishing houses.

Meet the team

Our Book Editors

From the world’s major publishing houses.

Meet the team

Professional publishing editors

Our editorial team are professionals from famous publishing houses – Penguin Random House, Pan Macmillan, Hachette, Orion and Titan Books – where they have overseen many bestselling and award-winning novels published to acclaim. Unlike other online schools, writing academies or literary consultancies we dont use  freelance editors. You will get to meet and work with your book editor. Our editing services team are in-house and wholly dedicated to your publishing prospects.

When you select The Finished Novel Course, youll enjoy the guidance of experienced book editors who are publishing professionals to oversee every aspect of your novel as we progress towards a finished draft whether for submission to literary agents for a publishing contract, for self-publishing, or to take your writing to new heights.

Every writers story passes before our editing services team as you progress towards a finished novel during The Big Edit, the last phase of your year with us. Their mission is simple: your success.

book editors from the major publishing houses

Meet our editorial services team

Working with professional book editors makes a world of difference.

Professional Publishing Experience

Acquiring great books is how professional editors build their experience, expertise, relationships, and reputation.

The book editing process at traditional publishers is collaborative and all-consuming, and will be undertaken because someone really, really believes in your potential. Professional editors will often have a strict maximum of books that they are allowed to publish on a list per year and will be thinking about many factors including market forces, their workload and target budgets. A professional book editor may well be bidding on your book against colleagues and friends, and staking their reputation on the reception of your novel. Offers are not made lightly. At most publishers, your editor will work with you on developmental editing or structural edits and line editing (though they will not be your copy editor or proofreader).

At The Novelry, we offer the same quality editing services as a major publishing house, bringing to your work of fiction the best editors with proven experience editing bestselling and award winning books. 

professional book editors with publishing experience
our book editors are full time not freelance

Our in-house editorial team

We offer a combination of course-based training, coaching, classes and editorial services to help you master editing for yourself as an author with dedicated editors who will work on your storyline and manuscript with you. 

Our in-house team of professional book editors have experience acquiring fiction books for major publishers, and have worked as developmental editors and undertaken manuscript editing for major publishing houses.

Our expert editors have joined The Novelry because they love working directly with writers. Unlike other editorial services, we don’t use freelancers. Our team are on-staff, salaried and rewarded for what matters most to us – your success.

Your editor will check in with your writing coach for your seamless and supportive journey to publishing. They will get to know you and your intentions and aspirations for your book to help you achieve your vision. At The Novelry, we meet as a team every week to talk about our writers’ work in progress to ensure we are giving you the best of our combined advice and experience.

The book editing process 

Editing happens in the third phase of your course year with us, during The Big Edit. The program mirrors the book publishing process; beginning with developmental editing, proceeding to copy editing the manuscript, and onto matters concerned with book marketing. We take your book to the market of literary agencies and submit your work with our recommendation to our literary agency colleagues.

Developmental editing is concerned with story development, looking at the big picture of your story. Just as with a book editor at a publishing house, this will be a collaborative process with your developmental editor, discussing any major or foundational changes to be made before you work on your next draft. Does the story fulfil its promise for readers of the genre? Is the opening the most intriguing it can be? Is the ending satisfying? Are there any missing or extraneous scenes? Are there plot holes to fix? Are we interested in each of the characters? And so on.

Line edits are sentence-by-sentence improvements. Once the structure is all in place, copy editing begins. Are there words you use too much? Are there metaphors that don’t quite work? Jokes that don’t land? 

Copy editing is fact-checking and sense checking. Copy editors will ensure that real things you’ve referenced are accurate. They will also check for internal consistency. Proofreading is concerned with correcting typos, minor errors and spelling errors.

We will guide you through these aspects of the book editing process, developing and polishing your technical writing skills, on a sentence by sentence basis teaching you how to self-edit with The Big Edit course. The Big Edit course helps independent authors learn to master these aspects of fiction editing in all genres whether literary fiction, historical fiction, contemporary fiction, womens fiction, fantasy, science fiction, childrens and young adult fiction and even some forms of non fiction like memoir. Editing skills learned now will set you in good stead for a few books!

Towards publishing 

Our creative writing students learn book editing skills for a lifetime of writing to publishing standards with The Big Edit course and your course begins with a session to meet your editor and review the storyline for a wise new draft likely to please publishers.

A professional editor will guide each writer before they begin the process of book editing with developmental editing advice to structure the revision of their manuscript. With The Big Edit course, our writers progress through the stages of the editing process from developmental editing, to copy editing and on to line editing, before they submit their revised manuscript to our editorial services team for review.

An experienced book editor from our team will give detailed line by line feedback on the work, and consider its potential to meet the standards of a traditional publisher before undertaking a query letter review and preparing the submissions package for our trusted literary agencies to secure representation towards becoming a published author. We review each and every writers submission as a team to ensure we meet the highest standards for your best chances of success at submission. (If you’re not there yet, we’ll show you why and how to fix it. We’ll get you there.)

The right editor for your book 

Professionals from The Big Five major publishing houses including Penguin Random House, Hachette, HarperCollins, Simon & Schuster and Macmillan.

Lizzy Goudsmit-Kay

Formerly Penguin Random House


Before joining The Novelry, Lizzy Goudsmit-Kay was a Senior Commissioning Editor at Transworld Publishers, a division of Penguin Random House, home to authors including Kate Atkinson, Dan Brown, Bill Bryson, Lee Child, Richard Dawkins, Paula Hawkins, Rachel Joyce and Sophie Kinsella.


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Tash Barsby

Formerly Penguin Random House


Before joining The Novelry, Tash Barsby was a Commissioning Editor at Transworld Publishers, a division of Penguin Random House. Tash has worked as an editor on many bestselling titles including the #1 Sunday Times bestseller The Sanatorium by Sarah Pearse.


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Craig Leyenaar

Formerly Titan Books & Orion 


Before joining The Novelry, Craig Leyenaar was a Commissioning Editor at the famous Titan Books, a publisher specialising in science fiction, fantasy, horror, crime and thrillers, and home to authors including Stephen King, V.E. Schwab, James Lovegrove and Mikey Spillane.


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Francine Toon

Formerly Hachette (Hodder & Stoughton)


Before joining The Novelry, Francine Toon was a Commissioning Editor at the Sceptre imprint at Hodder & Stoughton, a division of Hachette, publishing distinctive prize-winning fiction. Francine has worked with internationally renowned authors such as John le Carré, Stephen King and Fredrik Backman.

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Josie Humber

Formerly Hodder & Stoughton


Before joining The Novelry, Josie Humber was a Senior Commissioning Editor at Hodder & Stoughton, a division of Hachette, home to authors including Jodi Picoult, Stephen King, David Nicholls and Erin Kelly.


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Gillian Holmes

Formerly Penguin Random House


Before joining The Novelry, Gillian Holmes worked as an acquiring editor at Penguin Random House for the Arrow Books imprint, where she acquired authors such as Katie Flynn who was the bestselling saga writer in the country.


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Lily Lindon

Formerly Penguin Random House


Before joining The Novelry, Lily Lindon was an Editor at Vintage, a division of Penguin Random House, home to authors including Margaret Atwood, Toni Morrison, Ian McEwan, Jeanette Winterson, Haruki Murakami and Salman Rushdie.


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Krystle Appiah

Formerly Pan Macmillan


Before joining The Novelry, Krystle Appiah was an Editor at Macmillan Children’s Books, a division of Pan Macmillan and home to authors including Marcus Rashford, Frank Cottrell-Boyce, Tomi Adeyemi and Julia Donaldson.


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Our book editing services and manuscript assessments


Our professional editorial services team is extremely well placed to assure a literary agent of the quality of a writers work, having acquired manuscripts from these literary agents as past clients at a traditional publishers. Their editorial assessment and recommendation is held in high regard. We only submit when we know your book is as good as it can be and that it meets publishing standards. But we never give up on you while you’re a member of The Novelry, we will continue to show you what needs editing, as well as why and how to fix it while being on hand for the submissions process and the all-important query letter review when your work is ready.

Optionally, our writers can choose The Ultimate Manuscript Assessment for a comprehensive manuscript review at an affordable price including a developmental edit, copy edit and line edit from one of our editors. This is a wise investment and of great use to writers who have become word blind and feel they are unable to progress their work towards a finished manuscript without fresh, wise eyes. When you apply for The Ultimate Manuscript Assessment we will assign the right editor to your work ensuring you get an appraisal from a professional editor with experience editing in your genre of fiction.

You can choose how much help you want with our ‘build your book your way’ scheme to buy extra feedback on your work as you write. Once you join us on a course, you can simply purchase Paid Feedback Sessions for £299 or $359 for a 5000-word submission to our editorial team as and when you need it. The Paid Feedback sessions allow you to book in with one of our editors for a review and report on 5000 words at a time. You’ll enjoy a 45-minute video debrief where you can ask any questions. We recommend you reserve these sessions for the second half of the year, when you’re more certain of the story and can apply the feedback to written work you know you’re keeping. Use them during the third phase of the year – The Big Edit – to really sharpen and hone your chapters.

Writers enjoy writing, but editing books for oneself is the core skill that differentiates a writer from a published author. Invest wisely and learn from the best editors. Other editors, freelance editors, literary consultancies or book editing associates may well give you a singular point of view, but at The Novelry you will get the benefit of a collegiate editing service approach, drawing on the latest up to date market needs of our literary agency friends and publishing industry contacts and more than one editor will be putting together advice you can rely on.

You can view success stories and testimonials from past clients here.

Our book editing services are unrivalled, and it is our privilege and pleasure to ensure your finished manuscript meets the highest publishing standards.

Professional editing services to get you published.


“My story whisperer book editor took my submission package to the next level. She gave me the perfect premise line, went over my first three chapters with her brilliant editorial eye, and gave masterful advice on how to reorganize my book’s timeline to jack up suspense. She then handpicked the perfect agents and gave me the benefit of her industry wisdom throughout the entire submission process. I couldn’t recommend The Novelry more highly.”

—Helena Echlin, is now represented by Janklow & Nesbit after submission by The Novelry. Clever Little Thing has been sold to Pamela Dorman Books/ Penguin Random House and Penguin Canada, Grijalbo (Spain) and Nord (Italy).

Enjoy finishing your novel with The Novelry.

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