Thoughtful, Supportive Professional Editing & Coaching for Authors & Students

Stephanie Marshall Ward

I’m an independent editor and writing coach. My specialty is editing fiction—particularly science fiction, fantasy, and romance—and creative nonfiction (such as memoirs). I’ve been coaching and editing for over 12 years, and I’ve edited over 70 books for publication, most of them by independent authors. I can help you edit your book so, when it lands in the hands of a reader, it sparkles. I can also help you navigate the self-publishing process without spending a fortune or sacrificing quality—and help you develop a plan for marketing your book.

I also provide academic editing to graduate students. I have extensive experience coaching students and have edited university professors’ articles for publication.  I work with the MLA and APA style guides as well as The Chicago Manual of Style.

I’m a member of the Editorial Freelancers Association, ACES: The Society for Editing, the Association for Independent Publishing Professionals, Romance Writers of America, and Virginia Romance Writers, and I participate in events sponsored by the Northwest Independent Editors Guild. I’m happy to take on projects from independent authors, writers planning to traditionally publish their work, and publishing companies.

Whether you’re writing a novel, a dissertation, or an academic paper, I strive to polish your workletting your individual voice shineand help you continue to grow as a writer. I also offer fast turnaround on most projects, and I edit both American and British English.

CC Blurb

Please see the testimonials below or visit my full testimonial page. Also feel free to peruse some of the published books I’ve edited.

Stephanie is an amazing editor. She is gentle, but professional. She gets invested in the story and the characters. All her comments, edits, and suggestions were spot on, and she kept my characters’ voices and personalities. Stephanie was able to capture my vision and take it to the next level. She made me love my story again.

My book hit the top 100 paid ebooks in the Kindle store within 8 hours of publishing, and I never could have done that without Stephanie. She is truly a hidden gem in the indie editor world.

Carian Cole, contemporary romance author

I’ve been working with Stephanie on a rather complex project; the manuscript is half-baked and yet I wanted to release my work piecemeal to a restricted circle of sophisticated readers across multiple countries.

Stephanie made my project happen, literally (pun intended). She’s been patient, yet fast beyond expectations; respectful of my style, yet firm in her developmental recommendations. I’m grateful beyond words.


Alexei Sorokin, memoirist