Do you have a manuscript that needs another pair of eyes?

 A freelance "author's editor" with a PhD in cultural anthropology and a BA in history, I specialize in working with authors in the humanities and social sciences. I provide copy editing and developmental editing of book chapters, entire book manuscripts, and journal articles. I also work on book and grant proposals and job application letters. I have worked with authors at colleges and universities located throughout North America and Asia. Recent manuscripts I have edited have been published by the University of New Mexico Press, Indiana University Press, Duke University Press, American Ethnologist, HAU: Journal of Ethnographic Theory, BioSocieties, the Journal of Asian Studies, the International Journal of Communication, boundary 2, and World Development.

“I cannot even wrap my head around all the different levels of editing that went into this entire process: grammar, proofreading, content, line, voice/flow, overhauling reference system, theoretical support, and oh yea, helping to capture my voice in the introduction.That introduction. I know how much work you put into it. You saved it.”

— Author after submitting the final draft of her first book

 

I bring a lot of varied experience to my editing. For 16 years I was a professor at a liberal arts college, where I taught writing-intensive courses in anthropology, women's and gender studies, environmental studies, and international studies. I published a monograph (with Duke University Press), an edited volume, and papers in books and journals. When I decided to leave my academic position, I took a course in manuscript editing at the University of Chicago's Graham School. I discovered I love editing: I love working with authors and texts and helping an author make a text as good as it can be. You can download my c.v. here. 

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What are you working on? How can I help?

Sometimes I get booked for weeks or months at a time, but even then I can have unexpected openings. I've been working with some authors for years and will always try to fit short things in for them if I can. I can help with many different aspects and stages of scholarly writing (but I don't do indexing).

 

I know how hard scholarly writing can be.

 I wish I had hired someone like me when I was a new PhD and assistant professor! It's more common now for authors to hire editors. Some say it's a matter of publishers not doing much developmental editing, others point to more pressure to publish--but it's also clear software and internet speed make it easier for authors to find the right editor and work with them efficiently. Faculty members often have access to funds that can be used for editing and they can itemize out-of-pocket expenses.

Why hire an editor?

 

Maybe . . .

  • You know your manuscript isn't ready for publication, but you're not sure what it needs to get to that point.
  • A reader or publisher has suggested you hire a professional for "line editing"---someone who can help you reach a wider audience. 
  • You want to increase the chances your work will be accepted for publication quickly.
  • Your word count is over the limit and you need help deciding what to cut.
  • You're starting a new project and would find it helpful to have your own personal editor or writing coach to help you keep to a schedule and provide regular feedback.
  • You want to experiment with a different writing style than you've used in the past and want feedback before sending to colleagues or publishers. 

When I work on a manuscript, I keep the author's individual needs in mind.

You can click on the envelope symbol to contact me or use the form on the contact page.

Feedback from authors

You point at things I have not thought about. You also point at things that are vaguely in the back of my mind but not clear enough for me to work with. You are absolutely terrific!
— professor, hoping to get journal submission accepted without major revisions
Working with you is the best idea I’ve had in a long time :-).
— assistant professor, revising a dissertation
Your work always improves mine.
— professor (and one of many regular clients)
I got a tenure-track position at [R1 univ.]—-thank you so much for helping with my job letters!
It’s been a real pleasure to have you not just as an editor of my quirky prose but as an interlocutor in my storytelling and analysis.
Thanks so much for your helpful and supportive edits, Molly! I wish I’d started working with you sooner.

~ References happily provided on request. ~