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Tricia Dearborn

Expert editorial services

25+ years’ experience

Professional help to make your book
the best it can be



NO ONE EVER SAID that writing a book was easy! But there are many stages in the process where some professional help can ease the way. 

  • Have you completed a manuscript but are not sure whether it’s ready to be sent to a publisher or agent or to self-publish?

  • Do you feel like your manuscript is not quite hanging together, but aren’t sure how to improve it? 


  • Do you think your manuscript is in pretty good shape, but could use a professional eye to make sure that it’s engaging, polished and error-free?

  • Are you having trouble actually finishing your manuscript?


Or something else? In 25+ years in the publishing industry, I’ve seen it all!

If you’re wondering whether your manuscript might benefit from professional input before you send it to a publisher or agent, or finalise it for self-publishing – the answer is yes! 

Working with a skilled, objective and highly experienced editor will give you the best chance of achieving publishing success – whatever that means for you. I’ve worked with many authors over the years, from first-timers to best-sellers, to help them reach their goals. 


Manuscript assessment


If you’ve drafted a manuscript and are not sure what to do next, or if you’ve had feedback from a publisher or agent or other reader that it needs work, a good option is to have it professionally assessed. This can also be useful if you’ve written part of your manuscript and want to check that you’re on the right track.

Once I’ve read and assessed your manuscript, you’ll receive a detailed written report, outlining its strengths and suggesting ways in which it can be improved. I’ll use illustrative examples drawn from your manuscript when that seems useful. As well as considering what’s working and what’s not overall, I’ll take into account anything specific you’d like me to check. The report will give you straightforward, practical feedback – an invaluable set of guidelines to use when revising or refining your manuscript.

If you’d like to have your manuscript professionally assessed, contact me for a free quote at

Structural editing/developmental editing


If you have a complete manuscript, you might prefer to have it structurally edited. This is also known as developmental editing.

With a structural edit, I read your manuscript and note throughout the file (using the comments function) specific aspects that are working well and those that could be improved, along with suggestions for how you can make those improvements. I’ll be looking at elements such as structure, pacing, narrative arc, voice, point of view, dialogue and characterisation – plus anything else you’d like me to focus on. In addition to my notes throughout the manuscript, you will receive a report that will give an overview of what’s working well and what you can do to strengthen the manuscript.


If you’d like a free, customised quote for a structural edit of your manuscript, contact me at


If you’re planning to self-publish and you think your manuscript is working well overall, the next step is to have your manuscript copyedited. Copyediting (sometimes known as line editing) ensures that your book looks professional, is free of errors and typos, and is the best it can be.

If you’re looking to be published via a publishing house, copyediting lets you present your best, cleanest manuscript to publishers and agents.

When I copyedit your manuscript, I will ensure that the spelling, grammar and punctuation are correct and consistent. I will clean up any style or formatting glitches and flag anything that is unclear. I will also make (or suggest) small changes to improve the expression or narrative flow, with the aim of making your manuscript clearer and more engaging for the reader. If your manuscript is non-fiction, or involves non-fiction elements, I will fact-check names, dates and anything that seems out of the ordinary.


I copyedit in Word using track changes so that you can see every change I make, and can decide for yourself whether or not to accept each change (or you can simply accept all changes with a click of the mouse).

If you’d like a free, customised quote for a copyedit, contact me at

Follow-up consultations

I offer my clients the option of follow-up consultations. If you’d like further feedback on a particular issue or need a professional sounding board when thinking through possible solutions, you’re welcome to book in for a phone call or Zoom/Skype call. My fee for a consultation is $125 for up to one hour.

If you’d like to schedule a Skype or phone consultation, contact me at

If you're not sure what you need ...

I offer a FREE 10-minute phone/Skype/Zoom consultation to chat about your manuscript and how we might work together. Contact me on to set up an appointment.

Manuscript assessment
Structural editing


I HAVE OVER 25 YEARS’ experience in publishing. I started out working in publishing houses (including as a Managing Editor) and since 2008 have run my own successful freelance business. Regular clients include major publishers such as Hachette Australia, Penguin Random House and NewSouth Publishing.


I also work with private clients – both those who plan to self-publish as indie authors and those preparing to submit their manuscript to a publishing house or agent.

I have extensive experience in the following genres:

  • biography, autobiography and memoir

  • non-fiction

  • fiction

  • poetry.


I work on both literary and popular/commercial fiction, and both general and literary non-fiction. With non-fiction, I’ve worked on a great variety of subject matter, including popular culture, music, art, history, family history, popular science and much more.


I am a Professional Member of IPEd, the national professional association for Australian and New Zealand editors, and have a Bachelor of Science degree and a Master of Arts.  

I am also the author of four books. Having experienced both sides of the publishing process makes me particularly attuned to authors’ needs.

If you’d like me to work with you on your book, contact me at

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“You’ve been a blessing ... it was a huge gnarly job, and with your help it’s turned out brilliantly. I’ve worked with many editors and without doubt you’re the best.
— Larry Writer, bestselling author of Razor

“Tricia’s editing skills are second to none. With a passion for words, she is exceptional at challenging and encouraging her authors to bring out the best in them. Her respect for the craft of writing makes her stand out.

— Tiffany Johnson, Brave Enough Now

“Just wanted to thank you for the love, care and attention you gave my book. Your polished professionalism and edits helped refine my manuscript to one I am proud to put my name to.”

— Ioanna Serpanos, Giving Spirit a Voice

“Tricia made the narrative flow without trying to change the writer's voice. I have no hesitation in recommending her to the publishing industry at large and to those authors who are new to the game.”
— Ellak I. von Nagy-Felsobuki, Art Quill & Co. Publishing
Your eagle eyes are much appreciated! ... Your editorial skills are exemplary.”
— Kate Ballard, Hachette Australia

For professional help with your book, contact me at



REQUEST A FREE QUOTE – no obligation! Send me an email and I will get back to you as soon as possible.


In your email, let me know:

  • what kind of book yours is (e.g. memoir, fiction, non-fiction, poetry)

  • how long your manuscript is (the word count)

  • whether you’re after a manuscript assessment, a structural edit,
    a copyedit or a follow-up consultation – or any combination of these

  • any other relevant information about your manuscript.

For prospective clients, I offer a free 10-minute phone or Zoom/Skype consultation to chat about your manuscript and how we might work together. If you’d like to set up an appointment, let me know in your email.

I look forward to hearing from you!

A quick word on timelines ...
I’m often booked a month to three months in advance, so if you feel you’re getting close to finishing or revising your manuscript, and would like to have it edited sooner rather than later, it might be worth contacting me to see if you’d like to have your manuscript booked in. 
That said, freelance schedules are flexible and spots can open up, so it’s always worth checking if I’m free, even if you’re in a hurry. 
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