Don’t let anyone tell you writer’s block isn’t real. I’ve heard well-intentioned people say, “You don’t hear about electricians getting electrician’s block. They just get on with it!” Yes, but writing is not the same as wiring a house. Writing involves solving creative problems rather than technical problems, and sometimes the answers to those problems escape us. (How will Reginald escape the clutches of the psychotic human hair-paintbrush maker who wants to keep him prisoner so she can harvest his hair forever? If my ghost can’t leave the house, how will she get the thread she needs to embroider GET OUT on the sofa cushions?)Read More → Read more →
Fiction critiquing & editing service
A highly professional service with kindness. My aim is to help make your work as close to perfectly right as is possible. I take deadlines seriously and respond promptly to emails. I also aim to treat each individual client as though he or she were my only client.
I specialise in fiction editing and have several years’ experience with critiquing and editing. I have earned a "Distinction" in Advanced Creative Writing from the Open University which has provided me with the necessary tools to address the particular needs of fiction writing. I work carefully and methodically, going over every piece of work at least twice.
The confidentiality and security of your intellectual property are top priorities for me. I would never share or discuss your work and/or ideas with anyone else, nor would I ever use your ideas or premise. I’m a fiction writer myself, and I understand the worries authors have regarding their work. I treat your work with as much care and respect as I do my own.
Downloadable summary of services and prices
Michelle had me at "I take deadlines seriously." She caught errors that the previous editor missed and forever raised my standards for freelance editors. I got my proofread manuscript back on time and on budget, and I couldn't be happier. Michelle is a consummate professional and I look forward to working with her again on my next book.
This is the third time I have used the services of Perfectly Write to prepare a manuscript for publishing. On this occasion I used both the copy-editing and the proofreading service, and it has been truly fantastic. What has been particularly encouraging is that Michelle appreciated that the finished article will not be an academic textbook, and this allowed a certain flexibility in the language. It would have been very easy for someone less sensitive to ‘impose’ ‘the letter of the law’ on my work, and in doing so may have detracted from the feeling of the book. Having it looked over and worked on by someone who really cares, who really ‘gets it’, meant I knew it was in safe hands. And this also meant the subsequent accepting and/or rejecting the track changes was perhaps a far less arduous process than it could otherwise have been. It’s been an extreme pleasure to work with Michelle and I would have no hesitancy in doing so in the future. I have already recommended her services to a couple of friends.
Nick Roach, https://www.nickroach.uk
Michelle is a life-saver. Never before have I had an editor who was so articulate and who was able to point out and unravel problems I wasn’t even aware of without making me feel crummy about my writing. She’s such a clear communicator, and somehow she knows exactly what I need and when. Being an editor myself, I know how important it is to be honest with my clients yet bring across criticism in the most clear and constructive way possible. Michelle does just that. I’m so glad to have found someone who understands both me and my work, and isn’t afraid to grab me by the shoulders and bring out the tough love (I might not like it, but sometimes it’s just what I need).
Mariëlle Sophia Smith, http://mswordsmith.nl
Working with Michelle was amazing and eye-opening. Her critique was in-depth, honest, and spot-on. Her feedback helped me hone my story to its best version. She is quick, warm, and encouraging to work with. I look forward to contracting her for future stories.
Rhonda Zatezalo, rhondazatezalo.com
I found Michelle to be an excellent proofreader, making all the necessary adjustments and keeping in contact with me about potential changes. Michelle wanted to ensure the book was kept inline with my own personality and made many useful suggestions. I would definitely use Michelle again and found her to go above and beyond.
Portia Oliver-Mead, Mindful Little Yogis, https://www.portiaoliver.co.uk
Latest blog posts
It’s that time of year again. No, I’m not talking about Halloween. NaNoWriMo! Whether you’re hoping finally to start that novel that’s been pestering you, rewrite a previous draft, or maybe write fifty 1,000-word short stories, NaNo is a great opportunity to get some serious word crafting done. But what happens when NaNo is over? When the smoke from the keyboard settles? Is it time to start sending your novel off to agents? Perhaps immediately publish to Amazon and Kobo? Or are you going to make sure your work is the best it can be before sending it out into the world? To help withRead More → Read more →
A list of podcasts for writers organised by focus. If you know of any you’d like to see on the list, please leave a comment. (Note: my use of hyphens may appear inconsistent, but I have followed the conventions of the podcast creators.) Craft & Editing These podcasts focus primarily on the craft of writing and the editing process, but also touch on publishing concerns such as querying editors and agents. Writing Excuses My favourite podcast! Weekly, highly on-topic episodes of around 15 minutes. Hosted by traditionally published authors Brandon Sanderson, Mary Robinette Kowal, Howard Tayler, and Dan Wells, featuring occasional guests. From their website: ‘Our goal is to help ourRead More → Read more →
I have never been good at naming things. My late cat had no fewer than 10 names…(Mimi, Gary, Bingo, Smelly, Harry Larry, and Purry Murray to name a few). So when it came time to name my business, I despaired. A friend of mine recommended Spell Chick, and I loved that, but felt it was limiting. Another friend came up with Kind Critiques, but that had the same problem as Spell Chick. Many editors simply go with their name, but I wanted something a little more snappy and memorable. So I stole one. Around this same time, I was reading How to Succeed as a Freelancer inRead More → Read more →