Structural Editor

There are a variety of different editing levels.  I am what’s called a structural editor (also known as developmental editor).  This means I am often the first person other than the writer to see a story.  So I’m here to make sure the story makes sense, follows the laws of nature/physics/magic, that the arcs arc, that loose ends are tied up (unless they shouldn’t be), and that the author has made the best of their own ideas without falling into too many troupe traps.

I help others make their stories better.

Along with detailed comments, questions, and suggestions in the edited manuscript, clients get a full critique document giving an overall review of the manuscript.  I specialise in crime and science fiction, and my particular penchant is for getting timelines straight, a timeline that doesn’t hold water brings me out in a veritable rash but don’t worry I can cope with time travel so no fears there.

I offer competitive rates based on word count and timeframe.  Because I recognise that the relationship between an author and editor is a mutual choice and needs to be a natural fit, I am also prepared to offer a free sample edit of up to 3,000 words so that the author can decide if I’m the right editor for them.


Contact me if you have questions or a want a quote.


You don’t have to believe me, here’s what others say:

“Gail has done three structural edits on two of my crime novels and I can’t recommend her highly enough. She is supportive and approachable and I was particularly struck by her thoroughness and attention to detail. Aside from a great editing job she undertakes extensive research to double-check facts on behalf of the writer. She also had some highly insightful comments to make about my characters and plot. Indeed I came away feeling she knew my main character better than me!! 

I am now at the stage of having sent my first manuscript, ‘Who Robbed The Dead?’ off to publishers and am delighted to say I am getting some very positive feedback. Much of this I attribute to Gail for helping make me a much better writer. I will definitely be using her services in the future.”

Tana Collins, author of “Who Robbed The Dead” and “Care To Die”

“As a first-time novelist, I wasn’t used to dealing with an editor, but Gail helped me all the way and was very easy to work with. From copy-editing to developmental advice, her reports were thorough and detailed. It was quite a shock when I saw just how much she had picked up on, but once I calmed down and looked at it in detail, I could see that she was absolutely right. I will definitely be using her again and highly recommend her.”

From A M Thomas, author of  “Intruders: Flight of the Kestrel”


One thought on “Structural Editor

  1. Hi, I have written/part written 7 novels, over the past 12 years, but now at that I’m mid 70’s I suddenly feel that I must get help and get published – by a ‘proper publishing house’. Think Covid has made me feel time and future limited – morbid thought perhaps, but one has to be practical.
    I put one novel on Amazon a year or so ago, but with no budget to buy their marketing nobody knows it’s there – out of the 3.5 million or so titles on offer.
    My ideal would be to find to find someone with connections direct to ‘proper’ publishers and for that person to then work with me to get my work published. Is this what you do? I believe the term is ‘structural editing’. My novel is 133,000 words. Was 170,000 before I did an OU course on Advanced Creative Writing.

    1. Hi Marion

      Apologies for taking a few days to reply – I’ve been ridiculously busy.

      I do Structural Editing, yes. I work independently, so I can’t give you a way into publishing other than helping you polishing the manuscript to publishable standards. If you’d like to move forward with this, please contact me by email, and we can discuss what you need.


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