Rachel Daven Skinner, Editor
Romantic fiction is my specialty
I'm a freelance editor of romance genre fiction and commercial fiction with romantic elements for publishers, self-publishing indie authors, and writers seeking to refine their manuscripts before submitting to agents or publishers. I offer a full range of editing services for YA, NA, and Adult romance, and I'm especially good at helping ensure American and British characters and settings sound authentic.
Of the 35+ published books edited so far, Romance Refined can proudly say all titles have a minimum of 4 stars on Amazon, and more than 30 titles have 4.5 stars or higher.
Am I the freelance editor you've been looking for? I hope so! But you wouldn't hand your child to a stranger for babysitting, so I don't expect you to trust me with your book baby until you get to know me a little and check out my credentials.
First and foremost, I love to read fiction. Love to. We're talking reading while cooking, while waiting to checkout in a store, and even under the covers when I should be sleeping. (So the reading light doesn't wake up hubby, you understand. Not because books scare me. Usually.) I love all genres, but I love them even more with a dash (or a dollop) of romance in the mix. So know that I'll enjoy reading your work, I respect your genre, and I have vast knowledge of your publishing market—qualities I believe are essential in the editor you hire.
I'm also a perfectionist with a penchant for logic and detail.
Put 'em together and what have you got? (You're welcome for the earworm.) I'm the wordsmith who enjoys reading blogs about semicolons. I'm the analytical reader who loves to question everything about a plot and its characters so that good writing can become great. I'm the fan who thinks the romance community is full of some of the most supportive people on earth and who feels proud to be counted among them.
Simply put, I love helping authors refine their stories. As editor Arthur Plotnik once wrote, "You write to communicate to the hearts and minds of others what's burning inside you. And we edit to let the fire show through the smoke."
I'm especially fond of romantic suspense and mystery, historical romance heavy on the historical aspect, dystopian, light fantasy and sci-fi, and adventure. I have an affinity for comedy, strong atmospheric settings around the world, spies, heists, military, married or divorced couples, and all things French and British. I'm not terribly interested in editing paranormal of the vampire, shifter, or witchcraft variety, but feel free to run anything past me. I don't edit strictly erotica stories; however, erotic sexy times that support the story and character development are most definitely okay! I prefer to edit m/f couples in the primary hero/heroine roles. Check out my Favorite and Read bookshelves at Goodreads to learn more about my reading tastes.
I'm a travel addict. I grew up on the Central Coast of California, and my very own love story with a military man has meant I've been traveling the world for more than a decade so far. I spent a few years in Colorado as a flight attendant before moving on to England, where I did loads of traveling around Europe and began my editing career freelancing for British publisher Choc Lit. My latest adventure began in 2013 with a move to Hawaii.
All that traveling means my acquired global idioms are not only entertaining to friends and family, but they give me a terrific editing advantage. I can help authors tweak Britishisms and Americanisms and ensure characters and settings sound authentic. I also regularly edit to both American and British spelling and style guides.
When it's time to share your book baby with the world, I'll be celebrating right along with you. I enjoy praising my authors on social media and featuring them right here on my home page.
I conduct my business in a friendly and fairly causal manner while maintaining professional integrity at all times by upholding the standards of the associations where I am a professional member: Society for Editors and Proofreaders Code of Practice and the Romance Writers of America Code of Ethics for Industry Professionals.
Want to know even more about me? (Why, thank you!) Check out my interview with Morgen Bailey.
Congrats to J.T. Bock on her July 31st publication of Dama X! Enter Bock's creative world to find humans with superpowers on exciting adventures, and romance along the way.
One rule of the road not directly stated elsewhere in this book [On Writing]: "The editor is always right." The corollary is that no writer will take all of his or her editor's advice; for all have sinned and fallen short of editorial perfection. Put another way, to write is human, to edit is divine."
― Stephen King