Editing, Critiquing, Mentoring
I have done freelance editing for 18 years, plus have been an instructor for the Institute of Children’s Literature for 13 years, and have served as a judge for a number of writing contests (SCBWI, ICL, One Year Adventure Novel). I’ve done paid critiques for several SCBWI regions–some as individual critiques and others in a roundtable format. All this means I’ve edited or critiqued over a thousand manuscripts of all kinds ranging from magazine short stories and articles, through picture books, middle grade novels, and young adult novels, to adult novels.
My fee is $45 an hour with a minimum of one hour and can offer an estimate of total hours based on word count of your manuscript. I can provide comments on the overall story (plot, structure, content, etc.), as well as line editing directly on the manuscript. Also, I’ll include an editorial letter. I take payments via PayPal. If I haven’t worked with you before, I require partial payment before commencing work. My invoices will show payments received and actual hours worked
Mentoring other writers gives me joy.
Email questions to email@example.com to discuss your project and my availability.
“Thank you for inspiring me to write better than I thought I could.” – Jenn Bailey
“Sue is an excellent critique advisor for any stage in the writing process. Whether you are seeking advice on your first draft, specific plot problems, or line by line editing, Sue is able to do all these things extremely well. She is great at explaining the things that work in the manuscript and the things that aren’t working. I worked with her on a picture book draft that she suggested I make into a chapter book based on the voice and age of the character. When the manuscript was complete, she helped me with my query and final revisions. I just sent it out and I am already getting requests from agents!!” – Maggie Viles
“Your comments are thoughtful, honest and always gentle.” – Bev Taylor
“Susan critiqued a book that I’d illustrated for a local children’s book writer a while back. I found her critique to be very constructive and necessary. I was encouraged by her honesty and genuine insight and, as a result, was able to make improvements to the illustrations. The author was very pleased with the changes, and I was even inspired to write and illustrate my very first book.” – Danielle Williams
“Thank you so much for…editing my essay. Could not have done it without your help!” – Randolph Cabral
A Sampling of Past Events for Adults
- The Society of Southwestern Authors—Valley of the Sun Chapter – “Children’s Literature: Not Just for Kids” panel via Zoom – June 26, 2022
- SCBWI Oregon The Next Level – “Using Technology to Research Agents (or Editors)” – September 21, 2019
- Institute for Writers – Sci-Fi First Pages Contest Podcast – May 2018
- Willamette Writers Conference – session “Join The Kids Club – Write for Children’s Magazines” – August 5, 2017
- SCBWI Oregon Great Critique – Professional Critiquer (Sue Ford) – January 28, 2017
- SCBWI North/Central California’s Spring Spirit 2016 Conference – Workshop: The Business Side of Writing – April 30, 2016
- 2015 SCBWI Oregon – Spring Conference – Sunday Intensive: Electronic Submissions – May 31, 2015
- SCBWI Oregon – Get Ready, Get Set, Go Write for Children – March 7, 2015
- “Writing for Children’s Magazines” for SCBWI New England – Dec. 2, 2013
- 19th Annual SCBWI Carolinas Fall Conference – Charlotte, NC – Friday, September 23rd – September 25, 2011
- Guest Workshop in the Writer’s Retreat at The Institute of Children’s Literature – online – July 13-15, 2011 – “The Business Side of Writing”
- One Year Adventure Novel Summer Student Workshop (teens and their parents) – Olathe, KS – Wednesday, June 29th – Thursday, June 30, 2011 – more details
- Kansas Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators Conference – Overland Park, KS – September 18, 2010
- Guest Workshop in the Writer’s Retreat at The Institute of Children’s Literature – online – September 14-16, 2010 – “Turning Ideas Into Stories”
- 39th Annual Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators Summer Conference – Los Angelos, CA – July 30-August 2, 2010
A Sampling of Writing Workshops for Adults
Mind Your C’s and Q’s – focuses on Query and Cover letters, inQuiry letters, plus a brief discussion on Contracts.
The Nuts and Bolts of Writing for Children – includes goals, planning, getting to work, how to “show don’t tell,” dialogue tips, rewriting and marketing.
Swift Fiction – the Short Story in Focus – discusses the elements of short story writing with a focus on the storyline, theme, and main character.
Writing for Children’s Magazines – covers the ups and downs of writing for children’s magazines, what sells, how to write for children’s magazines, how to sell to magazines, keeping track of submissions, magazine rights and what they mean, and more.
Program lengths: 1 to 2 hours, depending on audience need.
Equipment: An LCD projector and screen. I’ll bring my own computer.
If there is a specific writing related subject you would like her to discuss, just ask. My email is firstname.lastname@example.org.
Writing Workshops for Children and Teens
Sue shares some published works, where ideas come from, and how books, stories and articles are marketed. She also does writing exercises with kids on “showing versus telling,” using specific nouns, adjectives that count, dialogue and more. (Trained in Six Writing Traits.)
Audience Age: 4th grade and up.
$75. per hour – $350. per day (minimum fee – $75.)
Mileage and housing negotiable.