Editing Services

Schedule permitting, I am honored to be considered for any freelance editing duties. I am a freelance editor who can perform query letter critiques, synopsis critiques, nonfiction book proposal critiques, and manuscript critiques (novels, memoirs, etc.). E-mail me at chuck.sambuchino@fwmedia.com.

Me at a book signing in NYC.

Query Critiques & Editing (Fiction and Nonfiction)

A query is your all-important first contact with an agent. It’s a one-page letter that explains who you are and what your book is about. Your query must be exceptional to get agents to request sample chapters for review. If your query letter is not up to snuff, agents will send a rejection rather than a request for more material. I offer an intensive freelance query critique that makes sure your query letter has the 6 mandatory parts of any story pitch. Look below on this page to see those who have gotten agents and gotten published because of my edits.

Synopsis Critiques & Editing (Fiction/Memoir)

A synopsis is a front-to-back summary of your work. Synopses are exclusive to fiction and memoir. They have a specific length and format. Before an agent invests several hours reading your complete manuscript, they want to ensure that the story is solid. That’s why many ask for and review your synopsis before delving into the story. I have critiqued hundreds of synopses for novels and memoirs.

Book Proposals Critiques & Editing (Nonfiction)

A nonfiction book proposal is a “business plan” of sorts that explains the concept, marketing, and content outline of your nonfiction book. It is a document that will vary drastically in length (usually 15-50 pages), depending on the length of your sample chapters. Proposals are comprised of many important parts, such as your Overview, Sample Chapters, Writer Platform, and more. To sell a nonfiction book, you don’t need to finish the book. You only need a few sample chapters accompanied by a full proposal. Concerning freelance book proposal edits, I work on an hourly rate. If you have a budget, I can adjust my hours accordingly to meet your budget. Personally, I have personally sold 7 of my own books through nonfiction proposals to publishers.

Full Manuscript Critiques & Editing (Memoir/Fiction)

While I enjoy critiquing full manuscripts, I choose my projects carefully because of time limitations. I edit all genres of fiction, with the exception of picture books. Though I edit all categories, the genres I work with the most are memoir, literary/mainstream fiction, middle grade and young adult. Before we engage in a deal where I critique your entire manuscript, we can engage in a “Test Edit,” where I edit a small sample of your work at an arranged price. This trial edit is the best way for us to get to know one another. At that point, you can review my edits and see if you want to proceed with the entire book. It also gives me an opportunity to stop editing if I feel no connection with the project.

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To discuss editing rates, e-mail me.
My primary e-mails are
chuck.sambuchino@fwmedia.com
and reesedn3a416@hotmail.com

——

Praise For Chuck’s Editing: (Success Stories From Those Who Have Signed With Literary Agents)

Lara Ehrlich: “Chuck Sambuchino’s invaluable guidance led me to my dream agent. Chuck edited the query letter I sent to Michelle Andelman of Regal Literary, who responded to my pitch with enthusiasm and ultimately offered representation! Thank you, Chuck!”

Chuck's clients have signed with these literary agencies, among others.

Jeffrey Cole: “I was delighted with Chuck’s editing. His insights and recommendations were invaluable, and his overall contribution was crucial in reworking an ineffectual query into an attention-grabber, and honing my [nonfiction] proposal into a sharper, more enticing proposition. My offer for representation [Carrie Pestritto of Prospect Agency] came less than four weeks after integrating many of Chuck’s recommendations into my proposal. Chuck gets two enthusiastic thumbs up!”

Mary Dispenza: “I want to thank you. I would not have had found my agent, Sharlene Martin [of Martin Literary Management], without your manuscript and query edits. From my perspective, you are among the best editors out there, and I am grateful that you helped me. I hope to work with you again.”

Judy Lee Burke: “Chuck’s edits of my novel inspired me with insights and creative suggestions. Shortly after working with him, I sold my novel, Blackrock, to Barringer Publishing!”

Patty Blount: “Thank you both for the query first aid. I’d still be writing draft after draft had it not been for your help. Recently, I got The Call.’ Denise Little from the Ethan Ellenberg Agency offered representation. I feel like I won the lottery!” [Added later:] “I should add that I GOT A BOOK DEAL! Sourcebooks released my novel, Send, in 2012.”

Alexis Grant : “Chuck helped me improve and tighten my query for my travel memoir, suggesting I re-order and expand upon certain elements of the pitch to catch a literary agent’s eye. His advice was invaluable; now I’m working with Rachelle Gardner of Books & Such Literary, an awesome agent who’s just as passionate about selling my book as I am!”

Ricki Schultz: “Chuck’s feedback helped me shape my novel into something agent-worthy. This summer, I signed with Barbara Poelle of the Irene Goodman Literary Agency!”

Joanne Brothwell: “I have no doubt that due to Chuck’s fabulous edit on my query I was finally able to land my first book deal! I am so thankful for the opportunity to work with Chuck. His edit of my query letter was absolutely invaluable—because now I’m signing my first book contract!” [Joanne's first novel, Stealing Breath, was released in 2012 from Crescent Moon Press.]

Leanne Shirtliffe: “After Chuck helped me with my query, I landed my dream agent: Jill Marr of the Sandra Dijkstra Literary Agency.” [Leanne's book, Don't Lick the Minivan: Things I Never Thought I'd Say As a Parent, came out from Skyhorse in May 2013.]

Adam Brownlee: “Chuck assisted me in crafting a killer query letter which ultimately led to the publication of my book, Building a Small Business That Warren Buffett Would Love (Wiley, 2012).  It is penultimate to have great guides and mentors along the path of writing and publication, Chuck is one of those guys.”

Brian A. Klems: “Chuck guided me through writing my query letter as well as my nonfiction book proposal. Just a few weeks later, I received an offer of representation from my awesome agent [Tina Wexler of ICM Partners]. My humor book, Oh Boy, You’re Having a Girl: A Dad’s Survival Guide to Raising Daughters, came out from Adams Media in spring 2013. The book has been picked up even at Sam’s Club, and has been featured by The Toronto Star, the Chicago Tribune, and numerous local media outlets. I would recommend Chuck’s services to anyone.”

Sarah Callender: “After spending weeks on my query, I sought Chuck’s wisdom and advice. His understanding of the components of a successful query made all the difference, and the revisions he suggested, I know, allowed my query to garner the attention of great agents. I was thrilled to receive many responses from agents and ultimately, two offers of representation. Chuck understands the publishing world and the art of the query.” [Sarah’s agent is Caryn Karmatz Rudy of DeFiore and Company.]

Amanda Gardner: “I attended the Writer’s Digest Conferences in 2011 and 2012, where Chuck personally helped me hone my pitch to catch the attention of the agents at the event’s Pitch Slam. Chuck’s critique helped me shape my query, which I later used in a contest on a writer blog. Agent Jessica Sinsheimer of the Sarah Jane Freymann Literary Agency found that pitch there, and a few months later, asked me to sign with her.”

Luca Pesaro: “I just wanted to let you know my novel will be coming out in a couple of months with the title Zero Alternative with Three Hares Publishing! Thanks for the manuscript editing help!”

Annette Ogrodnik Corona: “I sat down with Chuck Sambuchino at writers’ conference and had a helpful one-on-one consultation with him concerning my nonfiction book proposal. I took his advice and ran with it. Lo and behold, I was picked up and signed by Hippocrene Books! I am happy to announce that my book, The New Ukrainian Cookbook—A Blend of Tradition and Innovation, hit the bookshelves in October 2012 and is also available online. My heartfelt thanks to you, Chuck!”

Mary Ann Weakley: “Dear Chuck, many thanks to you for your evaluation of my query letter. Your suggestions were so helpful. I am now a success story. Debbie Carter of Muse Literary Management signed me.”

Terri Weiss: “I just landed an excellent agent, Jane Dystel of Dystel & Goderich, thanks to your edits. Those WD webinars you run were also great. Huge thanks for your help!”

Erin Granat: “Remember my screenplay you gave me excellent notes on? I JUST SOLD IT! Signing my option contract today, and I wanted to share the exciting news and thank you again for your part in the journey. Here’s to more success and happiness for us both in the future!”

Jerri Williams: “Based on the query pitch you helped me create, I’ve officially signed with literary agent Steve Kasdin of Curtis Brown Ltd to represent my novel. Thanks for all your help. Your edits were fantastic.”

Bindu Pisupati: “I signed with my literary agent, Stacey Donaghy of Donaghy Literary Group, this week. I just wanted to thank you for all the work you did on the query and synopsis, and for the incredible resources you provide people like me, who want to be authors but have no idea where to start (or, for that matter, how intensive the process can be!). I could not have gotten this far without your guidance, editing services and Writer’s Digest posts. Thank you.”

Ken Furie: “Chuck edited my book of humorous stories, and here’s my advice to you: Wait in line for him. Buy all his books. Give him chocolate gelato. Bribe him with pictures of your cat riding a dolphin, because he is WORTH it! I went through years of bleary-eyed critiques in writing groups and other venues, endlessly revising until I was ready to ditch it all for the kidney-theft racket. Then I went to Chuck. He lasered in on my problems. He showed me where I strayed, offered insight for purging weaknesses, and highlighted my strengths. His frank commentary gave me toeholds to ascend to the next level that had eluded me. Plus, he was timely, and responsible, and was probably well-groomed.”

Cari DeSantis: “The one-on-one consultation with Chuck greatly improved my manuscript and query letter, so much so that, within a few weeks of sending out my query, I got an offer of representation from a literary agent.”

Summer Heacock: “I took your Pitch Workshop [at a writers' conference] and reworked my entire pitch because of it. I walked away with all four agents requesting pages, so I would say you had quite the hand! I signed with agent Sarah LaPolla of Bradford Literary in the summer of 2012.”

LaVeda Moore / Hon. Ramona Roberts: “I attended your Writer’s Digest Agent Pitch Slam [in Los Angeles in 2013]. After many years of trying, I am pleased to announce that thanks to your teaching, I succeeded in gaining representation for our nonfiction work, Girl, Go Get Your Support. We are blessed to have found an ideal agent: Mr. Paul Levine of the Paul Levine Literary Agency. Again, please accept our sincere thanks, for providing a realistic opportunity to find success.”

Kathleen Shaputis: “Please pat yourself on the back as your talent has just landed me and my latest novel an acceptance with Crimson Romance. After you edited my writing, things moved swiftly after that. Thank you, thank you!”

Emmie Mears: “At a writers’ conference, Chuck sat down with me and helped me edit my query & pitch one-on-one. Between the books, the blog, and his no-nonsense approach to pitching a book well, Chuck helped me avoid a heap of newbie errors that probably chopped my time in the query trenches in half. I am now represented by literary agent Jessica Negron of Talcott Notch Literary. I can’t recommend Chuck’s services strongly enough. If you’re an author seeking an agent, you’ve just found your Yoda.”

Caitlin O’Sullivan: “Your editing advice on my query letter was STELLAR — about 75% of the agents who read the letter asked to see the full manuscript!”

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Praise For Chuck’s Blog & Writing Instruction: (More Writers Who Have Signed With Agents)

In praise of Chuck’s blog on publishing & agents,
(the Guide to Literary Agents Blog)
:

I checked the GLA Blog every day when I was going through my agent search! It actually saved me from making several really embarrassing and potentially harmful mistakes, and taught me a lot about the whole process. Anyway, I’m grateful for your site and I’m a big fan.” [Veronica’s agent is Joanna Stampfel-Volpe of New Leaf Literary.]
- Veronica Roth, author of the New York Times bestseller (and now major motion picture) DIVERGENT (Katherine Tegen Books, 2011)

“I visited the [GLA] blog many times when I was on the agent hunt.” [Erin's agent is Richard Pine of Inkwell Management.]
- Erin Morgenstern, author of New York Times bestseller THE NIGHT CIRCUS (Doubleday, 2011)

“I just wanted to let you know that because of your wonderful blog, I am now represented by Evan Gregory of Ethan Ellenberg Literary Agency.”
- J.M. Frey, author of the science fiction novel TRIPTYCH (Dragon Moon Press, 2011)

“I found [agent] Jessica Sinsheimer [of Sarah Jane Freymann Literary] through your GLA Blog interview last August. She signed me in September and we sold Falling Under, in December. Quite the whirlwind!”
- Gwen Hayes, author of the paranormal young adult novel FALLING UNDER (NAL, 2011)

“I’ve been a near daily visitor to your site since 2005 when I started writing Children of Paranoia. Much of what I learned about querying/agents/editors and the business in general, I learned from your website. You really do provide a great service for all of us frustrated and frightened aspiring writers.”
- Trevor Shane, author of the thriller CHILDREN OF PARANOIA (Dutton, 2011)

“I followed The Guide to Literary Agents Blog religiously as I prepared to submit work to agents. The blog contains invaluable information about specific agencies, the process of querying agents and what to expect when working with an agent. I’m now happily represented by my first choice agent, Mary Kole [formerly of Movable Type Management].”
- Bethanie Murguia, author of the picture books BUGLETTE (2011) and ZOE GETS READY (2012, Arthur A. Levine Books)

“I found Michelle Humphrey [of Martha Kaplan Literary] on the Guide to Literary Agents Blog and fell in love with her upbeat attitude about the publishing process (‘Make rejection pie!’ she said). She responded to my query the next day. Less than two weeks after reading Michelle’s GLA post, I had an agent.”
- Caroline Starr Rose, author of the middle grade MAY B. (Schwartz & Wade, 2012)

“I’m a big fan of your literary agents blog. It was an invaluable resource when I started querying!” [Mike’s agent is Sara Megibow of Nelson Literary.]
- Mike Martinez, author of the debut science fiction THE DAEDALUS INCIDENT (Night Shade Books, June 2013)

“I found my agent [of Ellen Pepus of Signature Literary] through a GLA article. My first book, HUNTED BY THE OTHERS, came out in May 2010.”
- Jess Haines, author of the urban fantasy series HUNTED BY THE OTHERS (currently four books, Zebra)

If you’re stuck in the circle of hell commonly known as the slush pile, this site [the Guide to Literary Agents Blog] is your Virgil: a guide to help you out.”
- Dennis Mahoney, author of the literary novel FELLOW MORTALS (Farrar, Strous and Giroux, 2013)

“I’ve always had your blog to thank for helping me find my wonderful agent, Danielle Chiotti [of Upstart Crow Literary]—so it’s always had a special place in my heart.”
- Sarah Tregay, author of the novel in verse LOVE AND LEFTOVERS (Katharine Tegen Books, 2011)

“I trolled the GLA Blog often when I was in search on an agent, and found the blog so helpful.”
- Kristen Callihan, author of the paranormal novel FIRELIGHT (Forever Books, 2012)

“I am very well acquainted with the Guide to Literary Agents Blog. I read and reread so many of the interviews and articles during my agent search. It is an amazing resource and I often recommend it to other writers. It’s really nice to get a chance to tell you how much I’ve appreciated all the work you put in there.”
- Carol Rifka Brunt, author of the literary novel TELL THE WOLVES I’M HOME (Dial Press, 2012)

“The Guide to Literary Agents Blog is a great resource for writers. The posts were encouraging and informative as I searched for my agent [Melissa Jeglinski of The Knight Agency], and the blog helped me build my knowledge of the publishing world.”
- Amanda Sun, author of the young adult debut (and start of a trilogy) INK (Harlequin Teen, June 2013)

“When I was lost and agentless, the Guide to Literary Agents Blog was like a lifeline pulling me into a place where I could say: It can be done, it can be done. And sometimes, a little bit of hope can go a very long way.”
- Mary Glickman, author of the literary novel HOME IN THE MORNING (Open Road, 2010)

“My rock star agent is Kate McKean of the Howard Morhaim Literary Agency, thanks to GLA. I can’t tell you how much I learned reading your blog posts.”
- Delilah Dawson, author of the steampunk romance WICKED AS THEY COME (Pocket Books, 2012)

“I found my agent, John Rudolph at Dystel & Goderich, by reading the Guide to Literary Agents Blog.”
- Joe Oestreich, author of the memoir HITLESS WONDER: A LIFE IN MINOR LEAGUE ROCK & ROLL (Lyons Press, 2012)

“I followed the Guide to Literary Agents Blog daily when I was in the querying process.”
- Aminta Arrington, author of the memoir HOME IS A ROOF OVER A PIG: AN AMERICAN FAMILY’S JOURNEY IN CHINA (2012, Overlook)

I used the Guide to Literary Agents Blog along my writing journey. I love the tips from successful writers and find the agent-quest tales to be fascinating and heartening.”
- Martha Brockenbrough, author of DEVINE INTERVENTION (Arthur A. Levine, June 2012)

“I read your blog regularly and in fact got my agent, Sara D’Emic after you identified her as a new agent for Talcott Notch Literary.”
- Ronald Farrington Sharp, author of NO REGRET, NO REMORSE: A SYDNEY SIMONE MYSTERY (Poisoned Penn Press, Nov. 2012)

“As a published author of nonfiction for kids, I felt ready to take the next step in my career and find an agent to represent me on a YA project. After hearing Chuck speak at a local meeting, I checked out his GLA Blog and read up on Jeff Ourvan, a new agent with Jennifer Lyons Literary Agency. My query was ready to go, and after some helpful and informative discussions, Jeff signed me late last year.”
- Kerrie Hollihan, author of THEODORE ROOSEVELT FOR KIDS (2010) and several other children’s nonfiction titles

“If you’re looking for an agent, you must follow Chuck Sambuchino’s blog. I did, which is how I found the agent who landed me a two-book deal.”
- Barbara Claypole White, author of THE UNFINISHED GARDEN (Harlequin MIRA, 2012)

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To discuss editing rates, e-mail me.
My primary e-mails are
chuck.sambuchino@fwmedia.com
and reesedn3a416@hotmail.com

—-

2 Comments to “Editing Services”

  1. Dear Chuck,

    I found your service through a blog, your blog which I love. To start, I have had bad experience with an editor already, and I really am hoping to have a great one next time I work with an editor. I am a writer and have been for nearly five years (I started the novel I STILL am working on when I was turning fourteen, I am seventeen now). There is a current project I have been working on which a large publishing house requested revisions on. I rewrote the novel, and really wish to gain a second opinion on it. The novel “THE COMING” is a 89,000 word YA Fantasy. Thankfully I had luck with my query letter and have had over 5 requests, but since my novel is going through revision I have put aside the querying stage in order to perfect my work of art.

    Who am I searching for? Grammar isn’t the biggest issue for me. I am looking for an editor who can really read from a reader’s perspective. One who has a great knowledge of writer’s tactics and one who could point out problems in my writing. This editor really needs to be harsh with me. I am not talking on the lines of “cruel” I only wish for honesty, because my previous editor really only read my book for the money. Once she finished, she told me that she didn’t want to hurt my feelings when she had edited it, so she will look at it again, for another 1k. I am searching for someone who will be able to identify loose prose, show don’t tell areas, plot slowdowns and a detailed manuscript evaluation. Maybe more even a critique, because I think that my manuscript is at its final stage. So please tell me if this is something you are experienced in and the cost you would be charging. Do you provide a sample edit? I really would love to know what you think of my writing and how you can help. I cansend you my first chapter once you reply. Thanks so much and have an amazing day!

    Ariel

  2. [...] Editing Services [...]

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