- developmental editing and line editing -

Imagine that you – or your author – are taking a road trip. As your developmental editor or line editor, I’m the navigator who sits in the passenger seat, helping you to get to your desired destination by the most effective route. Working responsively with you or your author, I will comprehensively assess your project and suggest how it can best be shaped to meet your publishing goals and reach the readers you want to reach.

I can help you with...

  • Enhancing your overall message and narrative arc
  • Communicating effectively with your target audience
  • Aligning the content with your reasons for publishing (e.g. commercial, reputational, philanthropic)
  • Ensuring a clear structure that readers can easily follow
  • Implementing a consistent tone and voice
  • Using specialist terminology appropriately and consistently
  • Ensuring that any required template or scheme has been followed
  • Developing an approach to referencing
  • Using tables, figures, boxes and other special elements effectively
  • Compiling a list of elements that require permissions research (copyright checks)
  • And much more!

Specialist areas

I offer developmental and line editing services across most areas of non-fiction. However, some areas where I have particular experience are:

  • Academic projects (humanities and social sciences)
  • Business, charity and third sector
  • Digital, media and futures
  • Healthcare (especially for non-medically trained readers)
  • History
  • Large, complex projects (such as encyclopedias and catalogues raisonnés)
  • Peace processes and peace work

See my portfolio for more details about the areas I cover.

You can also read a case study of a completed project.

What's the difference between developmental editing and line editing?

There is no strict line between developmental editing and line editing. However, developmental editing tends to be more about the overall structure, whereas line editing tends to be more about the sentences and paragraphs (line editing is sometimes described as heavy copyediting).

I’ve created a handy flowchart to help you get an idea of which service you might need.

However, in practice, the division doesn’t much matter. When we discuss your project, we will pin down exactly which editorial tasks you would like carried out on your text.

Hazel is an exceptional editor. She has an incredible eye for detail and makes suggestions for cuts and amendments to the texts which vastly improve the flow and strength of the prose. Her queries were always thoughtful and considered and have been extremely useful for the authors. This was a complicated project with lots of different elements, but Hazel handled everything in a calm and professional way which made the whole process smooth and stress-free. It’s been a pleasure to work with someone as skilled as Hazel. Thank you.


- Emily Pedder, The Academic Edit


You made our work read a million times better so for that I am extremely grateful.

- public policy foundation

I have the pleasure of working with Hazel – consummately professional and helped lift the writing in [the journal’s fourth edition] to a new level.


- Jay Armstrong, editor of Elementum journal


I have worked with Hazel on three books now – two were mine, the third and most recent was for an important client. Hazel is a delight to work with when one is short of time and naturally impatient. She is thoroughly professional and has the instincts to pick up a writer’s tone of voice and rhythm and match it through the value she adds to the manuscript. Her returned versions are easy to understand, adopt and go forward with.

- Tim Baynes, consultant and author

Just read your comments – very helpful! Particularly when you would catch the cadence of a page and then spot the part (even one word) that didn’t fit!

- multi-award-winning international management consultant and author

Example workflow

For line editing, my workflow is generally like my copyediting workflow. The developmental editing workflow varies depending on the service required – especially whether you want more of an ‘advising’ service (where I make suggestions via a project report) or a ‘doing’ service (where I carry out some or all of the recommended changes for you). However, here is an outline of my typical process for developmental editing:



We will discuss your requirements, publication plans and deadline, so I can fully understand your goals and expectations. I will likely ask to see a sample of your text. We might use a sample edit as a way of helping us both to better understand whether I am the right editor to help you meet your goals.



I will send you a quote outlining the service I am proposing, the cost, the schedule, and my terms and conditions. This will include the details of any deposit required before work starts and any staged payments.



We will then work through the manuscript as agreed. For example, we might first discuss the overall structure and then have subsequent stages where we make more detailed refinements to the language and flow. If you engage me to make changes to the manuscript directly, we might have query rounds where I send you detailed questions on the manuscript (usually as comments in Microsoft Word) and ask you to respond.



Once all tasks have been completed, I will send you an invoice for any remaining portion of the fee. You might then have questions as you move forward with the edited text. That’s fine – I remain available to answer a reasonable level of queries relating to the completed work for as long as you need.


Developmental and line editing projects vary widely so I always give bespoke quotes. That way, you can be sure the price is tailored to your exact requirements. To receive a quote for developmental editing, please get in touch.

Ready to find out more?

Get in touch to find out how I can help to move your project forward.

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Ross-on-Wye, Herefordshire, UK