Developmental (Content) Editing Service

In a developmental edit I provide feedback on all aspects of the content, including story and scene structure, characterization, goals, motivation, pacing, dialogue, plot, point of view, and conflict.

I tailor the analysis for any particular areas of concern a client might want help with, and I give special attention to genre-specific aspects such as relationship development in romances, world-building in fantasy or sci-fi, the buildup and maintenance of suspense in thrillers, and guidance on clue placement in mysteries. I also supply general notes on any style or craft issues that might affect pacing or readability, such as eliminating info dumps or showing instead of telling. With this service I provide a detailed editorial letter, supported with comments in the manuscript.

I see my role as that of support. I apply a critical eye and offer suggestions to strengthen a story without changing the author’s voice.

Turnaround time is two weeks from receipt of payment and the manuscript file.


Toni Morrison
“The revision for me is the exciting part; it's the part that I can't wait for—getting the whole dumb thing done so that I can do the real work, which is making it better and better and better.”
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Annie Proulx
“Rewrite and edit until you achieve the most felicitous phrase, sentence, paragraph, page, story, and chapter.”

Line Editing Service

My line editing service is for authors wanting a complete manuscript polish for a smooth reading experience. This is usually done as a second step, after content revisions are completed, although it’s available for purchase separately.

When line editing, I mark up the manuscript file using tracked changes in Microsoft Word, focusing on clarity, continuity, readability, spelling and typos, style, punctuation, and grammar. I offer solutions to streamline sentences and flag things such as repetition, dangling modifiers, missing or misused words, abrupt transitions, clichés, info dumps, and opportunities to tighten the writing.

Turnaround time is two weeks from receipt of payment and the manuscript file.

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“Deb is an editing wizard. She’s not only able to identify weaknesses in critical elements like plot, pacing and characterization, she gives specific feedback on how to improve all elements in the story. She’s worth her weight in gold.”
~ Kaylea Cross, New York Times and USA TODAY bestselling author of edge-of-your-seat romantic suspense