Writer/Editor for Hire

2650_1104059525471_664615_nElissa Field is a full-time professional writer, who provides editing and coaching to a small list of aspiring and successful writers, and editing or writing services to business clients.

What do I do?

I help writers organize their writing. I coach clients to identify their writing goals and find their voice. I ask questions to help find the intended depth or intrigue or resonance — that power writing needs to grab readers. I edit. I read for style, structure, character, conflict, and marketability. I help clients hone their craft. I support the query process to find an agent, helping writers identify genre and comparable works. I consult on building social media platform and other aspects of book marketing.

My rates are high: $95-195/hour, depending on service.

This is a business, not a hobby. I am a professional writer and certified teacher living in the United States with more than fifteen years’ experience editing, writing and teaching writing. Professional rates allow me to provide full focus on a client’s work. While I take on pro bono community projects or occasionally negotiate for lesser services, most of my clients are professionals, operating at a high level of excellence. Whether self-publishing or working through an agent with traditional publishers, they are serious about the quality of their work and value their investment in a professional editor. In fact, I turn away more clients than I take on.

You’ve probably also seen — here and on other pages of this site — that I am honest, kind and generous with the advice I share. If you are not sure if I am the editor you need, know you will be safe in asking me questions. I’m glad to steer you toward the resources you need.

If you are a writer serious about growing your work — or a professional in need of a ghost writer to bring your words to life — I’m interested in talking to you. If you’re not sure, drop me a line anyway — I am always glad to steer people toward other resources if I am not the editor they need.


Use any of these social media venues to contact me, and I’ll email you a new client questionnaire to learn more about the goals of your current project. You’re welcome to simply ask a question, no obligation. Contact information is used to follow up with you, only; we do not “sell” our list.


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Frequently Asked Questions:

I want to hire you. What do I do next?

Email me at elissafield@elissafieldthompson.com (or used the Contact Form above), and I will email a client questionnaire to learn the goals and scope of your project.  If it is not my kind of work, I let you know right away and can often suggest other options for you. Otherwise, we agree to rates, scope and timeframe, confirmed with a project proposal.

The holidays are coming – can I gift your services to someone?

Yes. You can buy a gift certificate for a flat rate service for a single editing project, or one hour of coaching or editing, or credit toward services in any amount over $40.

How and when do I pay?

Credit cards are accepted through secure venues including PayPal and Square. Payment is due before services for small projects. A 50% deposit is taken or incremental payments are scheduled for larger projects. All payments are due on delivery of final work.

Are there different “levels” of service?

Yes, there are 3 editing levels writers request.

  • Expedited review provides one page of editorial comments (summary of  overall impressions with attention to characters, conflict and overall impact, with suggestions for revision) and some line editing within the work.
  • General editing includes written comments on all/most pages, a well as a longer editorial summary. This is the standard editing level.
  • The third level, a close read, is intended for nearly-finished manuscripts and includes line-level proofreading on all pages.

Am I ready for an editor?

I edit work by fiction writers who have written a complete draft that holds together and has been revised at least twice by the author. Most writers have a sense of what is working and may come to me with specific questions for coaching or editing.

What if I only have “an idea”?

I don’t edit work that is not fully written out, although I do provide coaching for writers (see “coaching” below). For nonfiction, I may work with a professional or other expert who needs a writer for a book proposal or manuscript. I work with editors requesting a writer to cover a lede.

Do you offer any introductory specials?

Yes. If you want to test out editing services, I have 2 flat rate sample editing packages for new clients:

  • “Overview” editing of 10-16 pages of fiction for $50. You receive a one-page summary of editorial comments (such as character, conflict, voice, and overall impact with suggestions for revision; and 1-3 comments on at least half of the manuscript pages). Elissa is then available for questions by email for one week after editing, and the writer may submit a revision for additional brief feedback within that week.
  • Edit of 10-16 pages of fiction for $90. You receive a longer editorial summary (2-4 pages) with more in-depth advice regarding aspects such as character, conflict, voice, setting, writing structure and overall impact with suggestions for revision, and at least comments or line edits on every page. Elissa is then available for questions by email for two weeks after editing, and the writer may submit a revision for additional brief feedback within 30 days.

Is there a way to lower editing costs?

My goal in coaching writers is to teach you what you need to know to be successful. While I need to earn a living, it is not my goal to make my writers dependent on me. I will always bill for my services, but will also gladly refer clients or non-clients to free or less expensive alternatives, including steps you can do yourself.

Writers can lower their editing costs by addressing as many known issues as possible before sending the work in. The manuscript should already be proofread to make sure it says what you mean it to say (not missing words, scenes, etc.), is written in standard English, and is neatly typed, with most typographical or spelling errors corrected. Neat manuscripts are faster to read and respond to, and don’t add unnecessarily to expense by having your editor correct things you might have caught yourself.

What about coaching?

In addition to feedback on specific work, I consult with clients, providing resources, guidance and strategies to build their writing career, and am there to help writers hone their craft with individual workshops, prompts and other guidance. For writers working on book promotion, I provide training and assistance in building social media platform.

What writing services do you provide?

In addition to editing, I provide writing services for individual professionals and businesses, including writing or editing nonfiction books or feature articles, or writing smaller work, such as marketing content, press releases and publications. Depending on client needs, project management and social media consulting are additional services, and I provide referrals for graphics, photography, cover and web design.

 What communication formats do you use?

Work is submitted online, and comments are returned embedded within the document. Word is the most common software used. Other options include Google docs. Primary communication is by email. Unless traveling (clients in process are advised), response times are generally within 48 hours. Ongoing clients have scheduled checkpoints for communication.