Leigh is a noted editor, working mostly with authors of romance novels, novels which have a romantic sub-plot, and local history books.
Leigh also offers one-on-one mentoring and coaching.
Are you tired of letters like these?
Dear Contributor: We are returning your submission because it does not meet our needs at this time….
Dear Ms. Writer: Thank you for your submission. We have reviewed it carefully, but find that your conflict is contrived and your characters underdeveloped….
Dear Contest Entrant: We are pleased to forward your scores from The Romance Contest. Your entry has received a rating of 3.4 (on our scale of 1 to 10)…..
It’s disillusioning to send off submissions and queries to agents or editors and wait for months, only to get a form rejection letter or a few general comments with no explanation of how they apply to your manuscript. And it’s annoying to spend money and time on contest entries, only to receive a generic number score with little or no feedback.
A Word’s Worth Editing Services
Leigh offers several packages to best serve the needs of authors at any stage of their writing careers. Packages include (but are not limited to):
First chapter / synopsis review: For beginning authors, or for authors wanting feedback on a new project before investing large amounts of time in the writing process. Well-suited for the author who has considered entering contests in the hope of receiving helpful comments. (starting at $495)
Manuscript-in-progress evaluation: Ideal for the author who has a partial manuscript and would like advice, feedback, and suggestions to assist in completing it. Also appropriate when an editor has expressed interest in an idea or a proposal, but the book isn’t finished. (starting at $750)
Full manuscript evaluation / developmental edit: For the author who has a finished or nearly-finished draft but needs help in strengthening the book before submitting, or when the manuscript has been rejected without editorial feedback, or when an editor has indicated potential interest if the author revises. A developmental edit deals with major story issues such as character development, plot logic, conflict strength, narrative continuity, voice and style — the substantive issues which make or break a book. (starting at $995)
Proposal / submissions critique: For the author who has a complete manuscript and is ready to begin a serious marketing effort. This evaluation focuses on presentation as well as story and includes review of a query letter, synopsis, and writing samples (sample chapters). (starting at $495)
Line / copy edit: For the author who has a story which is in final form but which needs polishing before submission or publication. Line / copy edits do not deal with overarching story issues but focus on grammar, sentence structure, dialogue mechanics, punctuation, paragraphing, continuity, and style. (starting at $750)
What Clients Say
“Thank you for your critique of my manuscript…. I am one satisfied customer.
Your service is more helpful than most contests!” — K. Dennis
“I’m very grateful to have the opportunity to have my work critiqued by Leigh.
The advice she gave was very constructive, and I can’t wait to get back to the story
and the changes she suggested.” — K. Rogers
“My kudos for an excellent critique. It was informative and provides me with a clearer picture of what I need to improve on in the way of crowding-too-much-info-too-fast-in-too-little-space-too-early-in-the-story….” — B. Porter
How do we start?
Contact me at leighmichaels.com or by emailing LeighMichaels @ hotmail.com. Please include the genre, the word count, and a one-paragraph summary of the book. We will set up a time for a Zoom conference (at no charge) to discuss your project, your needs, and your specific concerns. If both of us decide that the relationship can be a productive one, we will set goals, including time frame and cost.
What does it cost?
After we’ve talked about your project and I’ve seen a sample of your work (usually the first chapter), we will discuss costs. At that time I will give you an estimate based on the word count and the extent of work required. The final cost will never be more than the estimate, but it may be less if the project is not as involved as we initially anticipated. I ask for half the estimated cost to be paid up front, and I will submit an invoice for the balance when I return the manuscript and the feedback letter.
What do I get back?
I return the materials which you have submitted, edited, with Track Changes activated so you can see each and every suggested editing change, and with margin notes / comments pointing out specific strengths and weaknesses.
Do you work only with romance writers?
I work mostly with authors of fiction, and because of my writing experience I often am most helpful to writers of romantic fiction, whether they’re writing romance novels or love stories that cross into other genres.
Feel free to consult me about other projects. If I can’t help, I may know someone who can.
What if your packages don’t sound quite right for me?
Tell me what you need, and let’s talk about it. The greatest thing about working one-on-one is that it’s very flexible. If you’re still exploring ideas, thinking about your story in general terms, or developing your writing skills, a class may be more beneficial. If you’re seeking support and assistance during the writing process, you may wish to consider coaching instead.