Editing Services

Having another pair of eyes look at your work is always a good idea. But first, you need to determine which service you need: developmental editing, line editing, or copyediting.

Developmental editing

Developmental editing is also called substantive or content editing. With this type of editing, I don’t worry about grammar, punctuation, or style. Instead, I look at the big picture. Does the text make sense? Does the argument work? Are there any significant holes or flaws? After analyzing the text, I’ll send a full report to the author. This is usually eight to ten pages in length but could be longer. 

Line editing and copyediting

Line editing and copyediting services are similar; however, whereas copyediting addresses the more technical issues (grammar, punctuation, syntax, and format), line editing addresses the flow of paragraphs and sentences. I will always include some line edits when editing a text. But if the line edits are extensive, I will suggest two rounds of revisions: one to eliminate the more significant issues and a second to focus on catching mistakes and formatting.

Writing help

Developmental coaching

Developmental coaching is done when you are finished your research but haven’t started writing because you’re not sure how to tell the story. (And yes, even the most serious research tells a story.) That’s where I come in. I’ll work with you to determine how to present your research in the best way possible. 

Writing coach

This is a step beyond editing and is specifically for people who are not great writers. They may be grammatically challenged, or they may not be native English speakers. Whatever the reason, I will coach them so they can create a really well-written piece.

Please note: these are consultation services only. I am not a ghostwriter.

Frequently asked questions

I can. However, you must check your university’s policy on using an outside editor and get a signed statement from your advisor/supervisor approving the use of my services. I can provide this statement if your university doesn’t already have one. 

Once I get that authorization, I can edit your paper in compliance with the rules of your university. This is usually limited to checking grammar, spelling, punctuation, and citation format.

My prices are based on the length of the document, the amount of work needed, and how quickly you need it back. That said, my prices are within the Editorial Freelancers Association guidelines. You can find base rates at

Here is a brief description of my qualifications. For more information, please see about me.

  • I have copyedited articles for the academic journal Theological Studies since 2021. I have also helped academics get their papers accepted for publication.
  • Acted as a writing coach to undergraduates during my three years at UMBC
  • Taken editing courses through Simon Fraser University, the Chartered Institute for Editors and Proofreaders (CIEP), and ACES/Poynter, among others
  • Member of the CIEP, the Editorial Freelancers Association, and ACES: the Society for Editing.
  • Hold a BA in history and writing and an MA in history.
  • Have more than seven years experience as an English language trainer in Germany.

I edit academic subjects that use the Chicago Manual of Style. I also edit creative non-fiction of all kinds including essays, biographies, memoirs, and family histories. I do not edit fiction or scientific work of any kind.  

I do! This is normally offered as part of the basic copyediting service.  However, I can also do this as a separate service if needed.

Sorry, I don’t. 

I am always happy to give suggestions on how something can be rewritten. However, I cannot rewrite anything being submitted for an academic qualification. I can only correct grammatical or formatting errors.

I don’t. My focus is non-fiction topics that use the Chicago Manual of Style.

What others are saying about Marshallsay Editing

Laura’s superior command of the English language, meticulous attention to detail, and exceptional editing not only helped me get an article accepted for publication but also reduced the amount of time I had to spend on revisions after it passed through the peer review. I will use Marshallsay English for all my future editing needs.
James Risk, PhD
University of South Carolina

Marshallsay Editing is a proud member of

Editorial Freelancers Association Logo
Editorial Freelancers Association
ACES: the Society for Editing
CIEP: the Chartered Institute of Editing and Proofreading logo
Chartered Institute for Editors and Proofreaders