Abby Parsons

Abby Parsons - Editor

London, UK

Commercial fiction editor with over five years of in-house experience at Hachette UK (Little, Brown Book Group and Hodder & Stoughton)

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Overview

'Abby is an insightful and nuanced editor, with excellent project management skills. I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend her' Clare Mackintosh, Number One bestselling author
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I specialise in commercial fiction – including women’s fiction, reading group and crime/thriller – and have five years of experience at the major UK publishing houses Little, Brown Book Group and Hodder & Stoughton, both part of Hachette Book Group.

I get enormous satisfaction in working closely with writers and have collaborated with some of the UK’s biggest bestsellers as well as many first-time authors.

Over the years, I have worked across the entire spectrum of commercial fiction – from heart-warming women's fiction to the grittiest police procedural. Recent projects include a high-concept crime thriller with an extremely unreliable narrator, a complex and intricately told cult thriller, a women’s fiction novel about two characters who see the world in very different ways (but are, inevitably, falling in love) and a multi-generational novel full of family secrets.

I started my career as a proofreader and editorial assistant and received training from the Publishing Training House in proofreading and copy-editing. Working in-house, I have also been lucky enough to form a part of the UK publishing teams for Jodi Picoult, John Grisham and Nicholas Sparks, as well as UK-based authors Val McDermid, Mark Billingham and Clare Mackintosh, playing a pivotal role in developing the industry-leading publishing strategies for multiple Top 10 bestsellers.

Communication is vital to the editing process and is central to what I do; whatever the genre, I want to understand why you’ve made the structural and stylistic choices you’ve made in telling your story and work together to make it the best it can be.

Whether you are looking for help with the overall structure of your novel, a few tricky plot points, or if you’re ready for a forensic line edit and final polish, I would love to work with you.
Languages
English (AUS)
English (CAN)
English (NZ)
English (UK)
English (US)
Fiction
Mystery & Crime
Romance
Short Story
Thriller & Suspense
Women's Fiction

Certifications

  • BA English Literature (1:1)
  • Copy-editing – Publishing Training Centre
  • Proofreading – Publishing Training Centre
  • Working with Authors – Hachette Book Group

Work experience

Editor

Little, Brown Book Group
June, 2017 – September, 2019 (over 2 years)

• Edited, published and commissioned commercial fiction across a wide range of genres
• Supported on bestselling authors Clare Mackintosh, Mark Billingham and Val McDermid
• Managed the publishing of Bookouture digital titles into Sphere paperback editions

Editorial Assistant

Hodder & Stoughton
September, 2014 – June, 2017 (over 2 years)

• Acted as desk editor across a wide range of fiction and non-fiction
• Formed part of the UK publishing teams for Jodi Picoult, John Grisham and Sophie Hannah

Proofreader

Self-employed
January, 2014 – May, 2014 (4 months)

Portfolio (11 selected works)

Inheritance

Jenny Eclair

From Sunday Times bestselling author Jenny Eclair comes an utterly compelling new novel of family secrets______________Beginnings, middles and ends; Peggy, Serena, Natasha and Bel. This is the room that binds them, this is how consequences work . . .In deepest Cornwall, the mansion Kittiwake has seen many pass through its doors since it was bought by American heiress Peggy Carmichael seventy y... read more

From Sunday Times bestselling author Jenny Eclair comes an utterly compelling new novel of family secrets______________Beginnings, middles and ends; Peggy, Serena, Natasha and Bel. This is the room that binds them, this is how consequences work . . .In deepest Cornwall, the mansion Kittiwake has seen many pass through its doors since it was bought by American heiress Peggy Carmichael seventy y... read more

After the End

Clare Mackintosh

Have you heard about the book that everyone's talking about?'If I could give this book 10 stars I would' (Reader review)'This book touched my soul' (Reader review)'I could not put it down. What a story. What a storyteller' (Reader review)'This is in my top five books of all time. Absolutely incredible' (Reader review)'I have never felt so emotionally wrapped up in characters in a book' (Reader... read more

Have you heard about the book that everyone's talking about?'If I could give this book 10 stars I would' (Reader review)'This book touched my soul' (Reader review)'I could not put it down. What a story. What a storyteller' (Reader review)'This is in my top five books of all time. Absolutely incredible' (Reader review)'I have never felt so emotionally wrapped up in characters in a book' (Reader... read more

Let Me Lie

Clare Mackintosh

Don't miss the powerful and page-turning new novel from Clare Mackintosh - AFTER THE END is out now____________________Read the addictive thriller and number one bestseller Let Me Lie - from the award-winning author of breakout sensations I See You and I Let You Go. 'Another one-more-chapter, stay-up-late sensation' Lee Child 'A work of genius' Joanna Cannon 'No one writes a twist like Clare M... read more

Don't miss the powerful and page-turning new novel from Clare Mackintosh - AFTER THE END is out now____________________Read the addictive thriller and number one bestseller Let Me Lie - from the award-winning author of breakout sensations I See You and I Let You Go. 'Another one-more-chapter, stay-up-late sensation' Lee Child 'A work of genius' Joanna Cannon 'No one writes a twist like Clare M... read more

Every Colour of You

Amelia Mandeville

How can one person change everything?'It truly broke my heart and put it back together again' Reader review'This story is beautiful, it has touched my soul and has lit up my heart' Reader review'You literally feel every emotion on the spectrum along with these characters' Reader reviewer_______________________Zoe and Tristan couldn't be more different - which is precisely why, when they meet i... read more

How can one person change everything?'It truly broke my heart and put it back together again' Reader review'This story is beautiful, it has touched my soul and has lit up my heart' Reader review'You literally feel every emotion on the spectrum along with these characters' Reader reviewer_______________________Zoe and Tristan couldn't be more different - which is precisely why, when they meet i... read more

The Poison Garden

Alex Marwood

'I devoured The Poison Garden . . . Gripping and utterly convincing, it's Alex Marwood at the top of her (already impressive) game' JOJO MOYES_________Where Romy grew up, if someone died you never spoke of them again.Now twenty-two, she has recently escaped the toxic confines of the cult she was raised in. But Romy is young, pregnant and completely alone - and if she is to keep herself safe in... read more

'I devoured The Poison Garden . . . Gripping and utterly convincing, it's Alex Marwood at the top of her (already impressive) game' JOJO MOYES_________Where Romy grew up, if someone died you never spoke of them again.Now twenty-two, she has recently escaped the toxic confines of the cult she was raised in. But Romy is young, pregnant and completely alone - and if she is to keep herself safe in... read more

The Inaugural Meeting of the Fairvale Ladies Book Club

Sophie Green

'This gorgeous book completely carried me away' Jenny Ashcroft, author of Island in the East'The perfect novel to curl up with on a cosy night in' Hello'An absolute gem of a novel' Better Reading AustraliaYou are warmly invited to join the Fairvale Ladies book club . . .1978. Life in Australia's vast Northern Territory isn't always easy. Telephones are not yet common, and the treacherous seaso... read more

'This gorgeous book completely carried me away' Jenny Ashcroft, author of Island in the East'The perfect novel to curl up with on a cosy night in' Hello'An absolute gem of a novel' Better Reading AustraliaYou are warmly invited to join the Fairvale Ladies book club . . .1978. Life in Australia's vast Northern Territory isn't always easy. Telephones are not yet common, and the treacherous seaso... read more

The Family Next Door

Sally Hepworth

FROM THE NUMBER 1 BESTSELLING AUTHOR OF THE MOTHER-IN-LAW'Fiction at its finest' - Liane Moriarty, Number One New York Times bestselling author'Perfect for fans of BIG LITTLE LIES' - Library Journal How much do we really know our neighbours?The top five Kindle bestsellerThe small suburb of Pleasant Court lives up to its name. It's the kind of place where everyone knows their neighbours, and ch... read more

FROM THE NUMBER 1 BESTSELLING AUTHOR OF THE MOTHER-IN-LAW'Fiction at its finest' - Liane Moriarty, Number One New York Times bestselling author'Perfect for fans of BIG LITTLE LIES' - Library Journal How much do we really know our neighbours?The top five Kindle bestsellerThe small suburb of Pleasant Court lives up to its name. It's the kind of place where everyone knows their neighbours, and ch... read more

The Way Back to Us

Kay Langdale

'Kay Langdale has got the knack of writing books that you carry on sitting in an empty carriage for a few extra minutes to finish, to stay a little longer with her characters' Lucy Dillon (author of A Hundred Pieces of Me)'There's no doubt Langdale is a wonderful writer, plots beautifully and is brilliant at showing her characters' inner worlds' Daily Mail What happens when difficult mothering... read more

'Kay Langdale has got the knack of writing books that you carry on sitting in an empty carriage for a few extra minutes to finish, to stay a little longer with her characters' Lucy Dillon (author of A Hundred Pieces of Me)'There's no doubt Langdale is a wonderful writer, plots beautifully and is brilliant at showing her characters' inner worlds' Daily Mail What happens when difficult mothering... read more

A Girl's Best Friend

Jules Wake

'The perfect read to curl up with' Zara Stoneley'A heart-warming tale of falling in love with life again' Debbie JohnsonWelcome to your new cottage in the country - complete with grumpy vet, village gossip and a very muddy dog . . .______________City girl Ella wants to take refuge in the country, lick her wounds and work out what she's going to do with the rest of her life. She certainly doesn... read more

'The perfect read to curl up with' Zara Stoneley'A heart-warming tale of falling in love with life again' Debbie JohnsonWelcome to your new cottage in the country - complete with grumpy vet, village gossip and a very muddy dog . . .______________City girl Ella wants to take refuge in the country, lick her wounds and work out what she's going to do with the rest of her life. She certainly doesn... read more

Our Daughter's Bones

Ruhi Choudhary

When Mackenzie opened the door to the kitchen, she froze. Her father lay on his stomach, blood pooling around his head. She lurched forward to touch him, but her mother held her back. Mackenzie felt like bursting. Her twelve-year-old heart couldn’t handle the grief. She would never forget that night, nor what her mother asked her to do…Twenty years later, Detective Mackenzie Price is back in L... read more

When Mackenzie opened the door to the kitchen, she froze. Her father lay on his stomach, blood pooling around his head. She lurched forward to touch him, but her mother held her back. Mackenzie felt like bursting. Her twelve-year-old heart couldn’t handle the grief. She would never forget that night, nor what her mother asked her to do…Twenty years later, Detective Mackenzie Price is back in L... read more

Hostage

Clare Mackintosh

'NO ONE WRITES A TWIST LIKE CLARE MACKINTOSH' PAULA HAWKINS'HYPNOTICALLY GOOD' LEE CHILD'FEELS LIKE A BLOCKBUSTER MOVIE' LISA JEWELL'A NAIL-BITER OF A THRILLER' SHARI LAPENA You can save hundreds of lives Or the one that matters most. 'HOSTAGE WILL HAVE YOU QUESTIONING 'WHAT WOULD YOU DO?' AT EVERY TURN' KARIN SLAUGHTER The atmosphere on board the inaugural non-stop flight from London to Sydne... read more

'NO ONE WRITES A TWIST LIKE CLARE MACKINTOSH' PAULA HAWKINS'HYPNOTICALLY GOOD' LEE CHILD'FEELS LIKE A BLOCKBUSTER MOVIE' LISA JEWELL'A NAIL-BITER OF A THRILLER' SHARI LAPENA You can save hundreds of lives Or the one that matters most. 'HOSTAGE WILL HAVE YOU QUESTIONING 'WHAT WOULD YOU DO?' AT EVERY TURN' KARIN SLAUGHTER The atmosphere on board the inaugural non-stop flight from London to Sydne... read more

Abby has 12 reviews

Professionalism
Professionalism
Quality
Quality
Value
Value
Communication & Punctuality
Communication & Punctuality

Janis Wildy
Working with Abby was wonderful. I got the excellent copy edit I was looking for plus extra suggestions where I needed them. I appreciated Abby’s clear communication about what the fiction edit would entail as well as her enthusiasm for my novel. By writing up a preliminary schedule detailing what she would produce and when, she gave me the confidence to know what to expect. I feel she put prof...
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Janis Wildy, December 2020


Julie Denny
What a great experience working with Abby! This was my first venture into writing a book and I asked if she could help me with editing because I felt like she would understand the sort of book I wanted to write. I definitely chose well! Abby has added considerable value to the manuscript - she helped me iron out some plot issues, develop the characters and sharpen up the prose. She went above ...
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Julie Denny, October 2020


Wilson Smillie
This was my second collaboration with Abby, on the same story - I'd embarked on a major rewrite of the story after positive feedback from another industry professional. The benefit to me was a professional who knew already knew my characters and could offer her views where she felt the characters had strayed from their path through the narrative. She had an insight and offered it while always e...
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Wilson Smillie, September 2020


Gillian Olds
I have just finished working with Abby for the second time, and once again I'm delighted with her work. She did an editorial assessment for a novel I was thinking about shelving , and her suggestions are helping me to improve it more than I thought possible. I would recommend her editorial services and look forward to working with her again in the future.

Gillian Olds, September 2020


Gillian Olds
I am delighted with Abby's editorial assessment of my manuscript. She has given me some excellent feedback, which I am certain will help me to improve my book a hundredfold. Her time management is spot on. And I love the way she formats her report. Everything is so well laid out, making it easy to read comments and immediately find the section she is referring to in my manuscript. I look forwa...
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Gillian Olds, July 2020

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