Caryn Rivadeneira

Caryn Rivadeneira - Editor

Elmhurst, IL, USA

An award-winning editor helping writers craft stories of faith (and doubt!) that move readers toward hope and action.

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After nearly thirty years in the publishing industry as both an editor and a writer, I'm in the perfect position to approach projects with the mind of a developmental editor and the heart of an author. I know how vulnerable it feels to share your work with others—but I also know how to structure and sharpen your book to make it the best it can be. As I edit your work, I never edit simply for edits’ sake. I encourage as much as I point to ways to improve the work. As author and editor, we share the same goal: to create a project that audiences want to gobble up!

Though I have written and edited for both adults (fiction and non-) and children (Picture Books, Chapter Books, and Middle Grade) and am able to offer feedback and guidance in any number of genres, my editorial "sweet spot" is helping authors craft books that inspire or spur action through story. Much of my professional has been in the faith-based realm so I'm also able to speak into what various religious publishers are looking for--and what might trip them up.

Speaking of my professional roles: I spent the first fifteen years of my career as a magazine and website editor before moving into freelance editing and writing roles. In that time, I've edited books, websites, and newsletters for select clients. When not editing, I also continue to write in a variety of capacities.

A proud member of INK: A Creative Collective and the Society of Children’s Book Writers and Illustrators, I hold a BA in English from Calvin College (now University) and an MA in Worship from Northern Seminary. I live in the near-west suburbs of Chicago with my husband, three kids, and beloved rescue pit bulls.
English (US)
Biographies & Memoirs
Christian Fiction


  • Independent Press Award
  • Moonbeam Award
  • Evangelical Press Association Award

Work experience


September, 2002 – Present (over 20 years)

For over twenty years, I've provided select clients with expert editorial guidance ranging from idea development to editorial guidance to full collaborative writing.

Managing Editor

Christianity Today
August, 1998 – March, 2009 (over 10 years)

During my tenure at Christianity Today, I edited several of the company's national magazines and websites developed products in the Resources Department.

Portfolio (11 selected works)

Lime Green

Roese, Dr. Jackie

Buster's Trip to Victory Lane (Buster the Race Car)

Earnhardt Jr., Dale, Smietanka, Ela

Edward and Annie: A Penguin Adventure

Rivadeneira, Caryn, Tanis, Katy, Shedd Aquarium

Sparky Helps Mary Make Friends (Helper Hounds)

Rivadeneira, Caryn, Alpaugh, Priscilla

Penny Helps Portia Face Her Fears (Helper Hounds)

Rivadeneira, Caryn, Alpaugh, Priscilla

Caryn has 5 reviews

Communication & Punctuality
Communication & Punctuality

Tuomas Makinen
Really, I would give Caryn six stars if I could. This collaboration completely exceeded my expectations. Caryn is extremely personable, encouraging, and nice, but she's also an experienced professional who is not afraid to give her honest opinion. She's very punctual and responsive, and in fact finished the project a week early! Couldn't have hoped for a better copy editor for my debut memoir.

Tuomas Makinen, March 2023

Reneil Wong
It was a great experience. It's my first book so i was a bit paranoid at first but in the end i was very pleased with the collaboration. She was easy to talk with, very informative and superb at editing. I feel much better about my project now than i did previously.

Reneil Wong, March 2023

Demetria White
Caryn is a God-send! I am so impressed by her level of professionalism and knowledge. Working with Caryn helped transform my manuscript precisely into what I had in mind. Her understanding of the direction of my work was both insightful and encouraging. I look forward to having an opportunity to work with her again in the future.

Demetria White, February 2023

Debra Sundberg
I can't say enough about my experience working with Caryn. The process of having a book professionally edited is completely new to me, so having someone like Caryn, who made me feel comfortable, was a huge bonus. She came alongside me, answered my many questions, and provided excellent feedback and encouragement. I'm just working through all the edits of my transcript and I must say, I'm en...
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Debra Sundberg, January 2023

Caryn Rivadeneira
Loved working on this with you, Debra! Such a fun project. Can't wait to see it in print.

Reply from Caryn Rivadeneira

Gail Harris
Caryn was professional in all ways - providing feedback, criticism and most important - encouragement. It was a pleasure and privilege to work with her.

Gail Harris, January 2023

Caryn Rivadeneira
Thanks, Gail! Was a pleasure working with you. Cannot wait to see your work in the world!

Reply from Caryn Rivadeneira

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