Book a chat

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 or one of our Book in a Year plans, 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 literary agency partners 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.


Learn more

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.


Learn more

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.


Learn more

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.

Learn more

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.


Learn more

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.


Learn more

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.


Learn more

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.


Learn more

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.

When you select our Finished Novel Course, you will work with a writing coach to develop your story and writing style and can get feedback from more than one editor as you raise your word count during the writing of your novel, allowing you to access editorial services to a word count of 15,000 words of feedback from a professional book editor before you get a full editorial assessment, The Ultimate Manuscript Assessment, included in this course plan.

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 our literary agency partner 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 the sense of achievement of finishing your novel with The Novelry.

The Finished Novel Course

Tips For Writers On Becoming Their Own Book Editors


It is not an easy thing to go from writer to editor, from proud parent to canny reader.

Though it’s tempting to get your book edited, we would strongly suggest you don’t engage a book editor, freelance editing, editorial assessment or book editing service, until you’re past the second draft of your book.

All writers need to become book editors for a writing career with a traditional publisher. Editing is where professionalism begins.

There are some fundamentals to both fiction and non fiction writing you will need to get under your belt and these include developmental editing, copy editing and line editing.

It’s not only desirable to develop the skills of an editor, it’s rewarding and will improve your writing for each and every book you write.

A good writer is a great editor.


To go from writer to editor, you will likely need to take a break and read some other books. You will look at a first draft and identify the parts of your word document worth keeping and the parts that need to go, and it’s hard when all of that story means something to you. But this is the first and most important part of self editing for fiction writers. 

Editing begins when you are no longer a slave to the romantic impulse of creative writing. Editing requires you to see your work as a finished product for a reader’s benefit.

What are we reading to find out here?

We have edited books from writers in all genres of fiction, whether science fiction, womens fiction or historical fiction, from paranormal romance to picture books, from memoir to collections of short stories, but one thing we know to be true is this. If you’re working as an editor to your fiction, we would encourage you to think carefully about where your story actually starts. It should be on the first page and, if not, then within the first few.

Set that thread down so that you can gently pull your reader through the hundreds of pages that follow. This is the starting point for a developmental editor, it’s the source of the storytelling compact between author and reader.

Understand story structure.

Improve your developmental editing skills with our course. You cant progress to line editing or copy editing without tackling developmental editing first.

Structure helps a writer satisfy a readers needs. How you tell the story, how you order the words, is perhaps even more important than the words you use, but often this cannot happen until you get into the manuscript editing.

So dont fret if your structure is a mess, you will be delighted when you see what simple things like structuring around a character arc, pacing, conflict, and a midpoint can do.

As you’re editing your manuscript, make sure there’s a moment in the middle that serves as the point of no return: a realisation, an argument, a death. This is the infamous midpoint. It has to switch things up for your characters and for your readers, too.

Becoming your own copy editor.

There is no easy way to edit a book. It requires you to read your story – something you’ve worked so hard on – and be the critical voice that finds the faults. This is where you need to become a ruthless and exacting copy editor.

We suggest you ask yourself in the line by line editing – is it necessary to the story, scintillating, is it original and ‘true to life? If the answer to most of these is no, it must go! Copy editing requires the highest standards from you the author.

Be kind to yourself as an editor.

So don’t forget to be kind to yourself too through the editing process.

Congratulate yourself on each and every brilliant sentence; they’re there, so make sure to see them. Acknowledge the characters that leap off the page and feel fully formed already. Recognise that self editing feels tough because it is tough. 

There will likely be several rounds of edits – at least. Maybe many more. And you’re going to have to be kind to yourself to get through them.

Take breaks.

The good news is that unlike when youre writing the first draft, you can work in fits and starts and a non-sequential order. Plus, you don’t have to play editor every day. If you have material that needs development, you can take time away with some writing. You can skip the tricky bits and come back to them later. You are the one in charge here, so take your time and settle in for the ride.

Fiction editing becomes increasingly satisfying over time as the story takes more twists and turns yet all of them now contribute to the thrall of the story thanks to your new skills as a developmental editor. Editing is the pinnacle and proof of your craft skills as a writer.

To write is just fine, but editing is divine. We’ll show you how step by step with The Big Edit Course, the third and final phase of your year-long program with us.

And when youre done, and proud as punch?

Thats when you get an editorial assessment from one of our team, so that we can take your wonderful work of fiction to publishing standards and secure you a fantastic literary agency who will be delighted to work with a professional like you.


The Big Edit

Free resources and tips for writers. Get on the list!

Get the world’s #1 writing blog to your inbox every Sunday. Fabulous and free.


We never share your data. Unsubscribe any time.