Aly Owen

Aly Owen - Editor

London, UK

Food, travel, literary fiction, and mental health editor. Worked at SAGE, Phaidon, TripSavvy, Narrative Magazine, and Red Hen Press.

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“Aly’s thoroughness and commitment to me as an author has been pivotal in the production of meaningful texts that we can both be proud of. [Her] consummate professionalism, endless patience and boundless emotional intelligence made the tentative steps worthwhile. […] She is the encapsulation of an ‘ideal’ commissioning editor, and I wouldn’t consider working with anyone else.” Dr. Robert Thomas, author

I’m a versatile editor, copywriter, and publishing professional with over 10 years of experience commissioning, editing, managing, and publishing content. With a proven track record of adapting to new styles and target audiences quickly, I have produced content for literary magazines and fiction publishers (short stories, poetry collections, and novels), scholarly and nonfiction publishers (cookbooks, social science textbooks, mental health and psychology books, newspapers, and travel/leisure features), and digital outlets (apps, websites, blogs, and social media).

I grew up in the equestrian world, and I see my editing style as similar to the dynamic between horse and rider: I work to establish a partnership grounded in trust and mutual respect that offers steering and guidance to bring out the best of your skills and individual voice. Whether you need to keep momentum, trim the fat, or find that little bit of magic to pull it all together, I use the needs of your project and target audience as well as my knowledge of successful craft and the market to structure my approach.

I am equally comfortable digging through the weeds as I am looking across an entire field: I thrive in doing a surgical deep-dive intro grammar as well as a broader paint stroke across plots. Whatever level of editing you require, I want our experience to be a dialogue that can flex and adjust as needed along the way while working not only to shape this particular project, but also improve your writing overall and give you the tools and confidence to continue refining your brand.

My experience on both the author and the editor side of the publishing industry gives me a unique perspective on the challenges authors face and the desires publishers have—and how to accommodate those in a happy partnership of which you both can be proud.

English (UK)
English (US)
Contemporary Fiction
Literary Fiction
Short Story
Young Adult
Cooking, Food, Wine, & Spirits


  • MA in Publishing
  • BA in Creative Writing and Psychology


  • Editor for SAGE Product of the Year Nominee
  • Editor for Most Promising New Textbook Winner
  • Editor for British Book Design and Production Shortlist Nominee
  • Beau Bordeaux Poetry Scholarship
  • First Place Behavioral Sciences at the International Science and Engineering Fair
  • Scholastic Art and Writing Awards

Work experience

Freelance Writer, Editor, and Brand Development Specialist

October, 2021 – Present (11 months)

Provide editorial services and support (from initial idea through to publication), write features articles for a variety of publication outlets, and develop copy, promotional materials, and creative strategy for brands.

Commissioning Editor

SAGE Publications
September, 2015 – October, 2021 (about 6 years)

Recruit and provide creative development support to new authors and editorial talent on the Research Methods list (across social sciences and humanities).

Digital Products and Cookery Intern

Phaidon Press
November, 2014 – July, 2015 (8 months)

Write app-based copy and assist in designing mobile apps for Wallpaper* City Guides and Where Chefs Eat, and typeset, and proofread Phaidon cookbooks.


Jiwar Creation and Society (Barcelona) and Takt Kunstprojektraum (Berlin)
September, 2013 – January, 2014 (4 months)

Application-only artist in residence programs where I wrote a novel, hosted public readings and exhibitions, and continued to build a network with local and international artists and publishers.

Editorial, Design, and Production Assistant

Red Hen Press
September, 2012 – May, 2013 (8 months)

Editorial: correspond with authors; prepare manuscripts; evaluate submissions; write reader reports

Design: typeset fiction and poetry books; perform galley, pre-flight, and cover proof checks

Marketing: create adverts, flyers, and graphics; attend selected events and conferences as a brand ambassador

Associate Editor

Narrative Magazine
August, 2012 – March, 2018 (over 5 years)

Evaluate and edit fiction and poetry submissions and recommend for publication or rejection

Portfolio (8 selected works)

The Nordic Cookbook

Nilsson, Magnus


Piazza, Jessica


Franchini, Emily, Owen, Aly

Aly has 31 reviews

Communication & Punctuality
Communication & Punctuality

Marguerite Valentine
I have some past experience of comments on my writing but none as helpful or astute as Aly, She totally gets my writing. I asked for an evaluation of the structure of the book and she made a number of points over and above this initial request which I have yet to absorb. She also writes with evident knowledge and interest in my project ....on becoming a therapist. Overall, I'm well pleased and...
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Marguerite Valentine, August 2022

Stacy Nicholson
Aly Owen is highly skilled editor who polished my manual and make it shine giving it last glance before publication. I could not find better person to work on my book. I warmly recommend Aly to other writers so the best and most important thing we can invest in our book is good editor who will make it or brake it our work before publication. Thank you so much for your sincere work and effort ...
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Stacy Nicholson, July 2022

Mary Burbach
Aly gave me some wonderful developmental editing. She was encouraging while also telling me what doesn’t work in my writing. I hope I’ll be fortunate enough to work with her again.

Mary Burbach, July 2022

Ismael Hassan
Aly was easy and amazing to work with. She provided great service and I would definitely reach out again in the future.

Ismael Hassan, July 2022

Christina Foxwell
Thank you Aly for your support, suggestions and connection to my work. You got my insights, I have used the edits and grateful for your support. Looking forward to contacting you again for my next project!

Christina Foxwell, June 2022

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