e: pauleditnyc@fastmail.com


CREATING A MAGNETIC PIECE OF WRITING can be a bit of a mystery. Using "correct" punctuation or following staid rules of language, grammar, usage, symbolism, or form, etc., only go so far. Creating that book you can't put down or that riveting article or paper is also about rhythm and beat. Rendering complexity and depth into an engaging, readable form requires instinct. The rule is: there are always exceptions. Editing is the craft of creating a seamless, moment-to-moment flow—and many times, a narrative—balancing purpose, content, syntax, punctuation, shape, concision, word choice, structure, point of view, and mood, without losing sight of the whole. It all counts.

My approach is to organically coax and cajole your prose into completion, not to overwhelm it or tear it apart, as I help you declutter, de-cliché, and tighten your material, putting it all together coherently and clearly while preserving your own unique voice. Our mutual goal is to maintain your natural style while enhancing your material's completeness, interest, and readability. In the end, capturing the reader in the distinct "world" of your prose is what matters most. And that is what we will do. In the process, you can become a better writer.

I just edited a book coming out in early 2018 on Columbia University Press, and I try to read every book that slides onto my bookshelf or climbs my floorcairn. Katherine Boo's Behind the Beautiful Forevers, a recent acquisition, awaits opening. To me, being an astute, enthusiastic reader is important for an editor because it allows you to recognize what an effective letter or paper, a potential page turner, a great story, or immersive book should sound, look, and "feel" like. There is a lot of interplay, but I work at all levels, from basic copy editing, to developmental and structural editing, to rewriting. I've experienced every stage of the writing/publishing process, blank pages to published books, so there aren't many content knots I can't untie.

I've worked with academics, students, professionals, doctors, artists, and creative writers on enhancing their books, manuscripts, dissertations, short stories, LinkedIn content, articles, screenplays, novels, personal statements (residency, fellowship, grant, and award-winning), introductions, vision statements, memoirs, narrative nonfiction and history (published), cover letters, application letters, queries, project proposals, essays, and presentations. I am versed in adhering to the guidelines of several manuals of style and have studied that elusive subject from the standard to the arcane. I also edit and polish translations, primarily deriving from Portuguese, Japanese, and German, with bilingual partners.

My no-nonsense, flat project rates are affordable and based on a sliding scale of approximately 15¢ per word down to about 2¢ per word, depending on length, genre, required editing level, complexity, and subject matter. Generally, the longer the material, the lower the rate. I charge a minimum of $35 (usually, very brief material or light editing) and offer better rates to repeat clients. I turn around drafts in Word or PDF form, and tend to work ahead of schedule, with seamless, easy communication. Manuscript critiques with detailed commentary run $300 flat up to 100,000 words. (Note: editing rates do not directly apply to ghostwriting rates.) Once we establish a writer-editor relationship, I share my client "hotline" (a rugged, vintage Cortelco touch-tone job, beige, with a mechanical clang that persists to scare) number with you, which I keep open for coaching, writing emergencies, grammar puzzle solutions, and, just in case, an extra kick of creative motivation. I am sure you would find my one-on-one service a notch or two above what you would encounter at the many self-published author services out there. You can reach me via email at pauleditnyc@fastmail.com to discuss your project or request work samples. I would be happy to do a short "audition" edit for you. Let's make something good into something great.


Select Projects/Clients


The Last Color
by Vikas Khanna
(Bloomsbury India, 2018)

God and Man in Tehran
by Hossein Kamaly
(Columbia University Press, 2018)

Teetering The Line: A Coloring Book for Adults

(Introduction/Description, 2017)
by Dan R. Drossman

Drinking and Driving in Ürümqi
by Andrew Demetre
(Strangers Gate Books, 2013)

The Accidental Iraqi

by Kamila Kashgari
(iUniverse, 2012)


"Take Mobile Learning to Students Trapped in Afghan Conflict Zones"
by Shakib Noori
(Tolo News, March 2017)

"Securing the Afghan Hub"
by Shakib Noori
(The Daily O, December 2017)

"India: Seeing the Port of Chabahar for the Game Changer It Is"
by Shakib Noori
(The Daily O, March 2017)


Patricia Phillips
(Opera Singer, Broadway Performer, Professor)



email: paulandrew@fastmail.fm