Developmental Editing

Developmental editing is ideal for writing projects that are in the early stages of development. Unlike copyediting, which examines grammar and sentence structure, developmental editing involves evaluating the substance of a project.

Developmental editing for fiction focuses on characterization, plot, setting, theme, and story structure. For nonfiction projects, the focus is usually on research, content development, and organization.

As your developmental editor, I will collaborate with you to hone your ideas and develop them into a concrete, comprehensive manuscript.

Do You Need a Developmental Editor?

  • Do you have an idea that you’re not sure how to organize or structure into a manuscript?
  • Have you completed an outline and want to iron out the kinks before you start revising?
  • Do you need help working through your first draft to identify and fix problems before moving on to the second draft?

If you answered yes to any of these questions, then a developmental editor is probably right for you.

How it Works

Most developmental editing projects start with a detailed outline. If you’ve already written a draft, we might create an outline from it, which will give us a bird’s eye view of the flow and structure. However, some writers prefer to work from a full manuscript.

I’ll go through your outline or draft and highlight areas that need improvement with a focus on characterization, plot, setting, theme, and structure. You will receive a copy of your outline or draft with editorial notes and another document containing detailed editorial feedback.

Feedback often includes recommendations and suggestions for improvements based on the story as it is presented. As your developmental editor, my job is to help you realize your creative or professional vision.

Developmental projects don’t include editing for grammar, spelling, or punctuation, although you might receive some tips and feedback in these areas when it’s warranted.

How to Get Started

To get started, simply contact me and tell me about your writing project. There is no obligation until you receive a quote and issue your first payment.

I look forward to hearing from you and wish you the best of luck with your creative writing.


Rates are quoted on a per-project basis with an hourly fee. We often start with a one-hour consultation ($70) or a five-hour package of consultation time ($300). You’ll receive a quote for services before our work together begins. There are no fees or obligations until you accept the quote by issuing a deposit.

You’ve written the words. What will you do with them?
Contact me, and let’s work together to make your writing shine.

*minimum charge of $250 per project

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