Christa Desir

Christa Desir - Editor Tick

Chicago, IL, USA

Development and copy editor working with NY publishers, bestselling/award-winning indie authors since 2011. Multi-published YA author.

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Overview

I began my career as an acquiring development editor for Samhain Publishing's main romance line where I worked for five years. When that publisher closed, I started working with St. Martin's Press as a freelance development editor, as well as Sourcebooks and Macmillan Children's Group as a copy editor. I have edited over 200 books in YA, romance, and kid lit. I also recently established an editing mentorship with young POC whom I often work with if an author is looking for specific sensitivity feedback.

My philosophy with authors is to be a partner to them in perfecting the story they want to tell. We discuss what they feel their promise to the reader is, and I edit with an eye toward always keeping that promise in mind, and making sure that every scene and choice fulfills that promise. I love brainstorming with authors, and feel my strength is seeing the heart of a story and bringing it out so the author feels they've put their best work into the world.

Testimonials from past clients:

“Christa is a dream to work with. She approaches our stories with grace, passion, honesty, and humor. She respects our ideas and style, and yet still treats the work as her own. Her innate understanding of characters and story and the messages we try to convey is a precious gift. We trust her instincts and her insights completely, and we know that her feedback makes us better writers. Very simply, she’s the best.”
Nikoo and Jim McGoldrick, w/a May McGoldrick
USA Today bestselling author of Highland Crown

“Every author needs Christa in their life.
Your stories will thank you for it!”
Stacey Kennedy, USA Today bestselling author

“Christa is the most thorough, collaborative, and compassionate editor I've had the pleasure to work with. I adore her and can't recommend her services highly enough.”
Tamsen Parker, USA Today bestselling author

There are not enough kind words to describe working with Christa! She is thorough and spot on. Even when I want to groan, I know she is right! She has been in the editing world for so long that she really knows every aspect of the industry, and it shows in her work. She is also hilarious and amazingly fun to work with. She does not disappoint.
Becca Jameson, author of the FIGHT CLUB and EMERGENCE series

“Christa's ability to make a book shine is second to none. Her editing is insightful, on-point, and my stories always come out of the editing process much stronger. She's very timely with her edits and a total professional to work with. I cannot recommend her highly enough.”
Jackie Ashenden, award-winning author of the LIES WE TELL and LIVING IN series

Languages
English (US)
Fiction
LGBTQ
Romance
Women's Fiction
Young Adult & Teen

Awards

  • RWA RITA-nominated editor

Work experience

Acquiring Development Editor

Samhain Publishing
December, 2011 – March, 2016 (about 4 years)

Acquired and edited three to four titles per month for Samhain’s main romance line (digital/print). Partnered in developing cover art, jacket copy, promotional efforts for over 30 authors. Worked with agents and authors in building author brands and developing new material.

Freelance Development and Copy Editor

Self-employed
December, 2011 – Present (over 7 years)

Freelance development and copy editor whose clients include St. Martin’s Press, Sourcebooks Publishing, Macmillan Children’s Publishing, and various self-published indie authors. Worked on NYT and USA Today bestselling novels, and was nominated for a RITA for development editing in 2018.

Portfolio (22 selected works)

Again, but Better: A Novel

Christine Riccio

From one of the most followed booktubers today, comes Again, but Better, a story about second chances, discovering yourself, and being brave enough to try again.Shane has been doing college all wrong. Pre-med, stellar grades, and happy parents…sounds ideal -- but Shane's made zero friends, goes home every weekend, and romance…what’s that? Her life has been dorm, dining hall, class, repeat. Tim... read more

From one of the most followed booktubers today, comes Again, but Better, a story about second chances, discovering yourself, and being brave enough to try again.Shane has been doing college all wrong. Pre-med, stellar grades, and happy parents…sounds ideal -- but Shane's made zero friends, goes home every weekend, and romance…what’s that? Her life has been dorm, dining hall, class, repeat. Tim... read more

Highland Crown (Royal Highlander Book 1)

May McGoldrick

Scottish pride, persuasion, and passion—this is Highland romance at its breathtaking best. From USA Today bestselling author May McGoldrick comes Highland Crown, the first book in the Royal Highlander series. Inverness, 1820Perched on the North Sea, this port town—by turns legendary and mythological—is a place where Highland rebels and English authorities clash in a mortal struggle for surviva... read more

Scottish pride, persuasion, and passion—this is Highland romance at its breathtaking best. From USA Today bestselling author May McGoldrick comes Highland Crown, the first book in the Royal Highlander series. Inverness, 1820Perched on the North Sea, this port town—by turns legendary and mythological—is a place where Highland rebels and English authorities clash in a mortal struggle for surviva... read more

The Gilded Wolves

Roshani Chokshi

*AN INSTANT NEW YORK TIMES BEST SELLER*From New York Times bestselling author Roshani Chokshi comes The Gilded Wolves, a novel set in Paris during a time of extraordinary change--one that is full of mystery, decadence, and dangerous desires...No one believes in them. But soon no one will forget them. It's 1889. The city is on the cusp of industry and power, and the Exposition Universelle has b... read more

*AN INSTANT NEW YORK TIMES BEST SELLER*From New York Times bestselling author Roshani Chokshi comes The Gilded Wolves, a novel set in Paris during a time of extraordinary change--one that is full of mystery, decadence, and dangerous desires...No one believes in them. But soon no one will forget them. It's 1889. The city is on the cusp of industry and power, and the Exposition Universelle has b... read more

No Other Duke But You: A Playful Brides Novel

Valerie Bowman

The Playful Brides novels are:“Wholly satisfying.”—USA Today“Smart and sensual.”—RT Book Reviews“Delicious.” —Kirkus ReviewsA lady with a love potion. A Duke who takes it by mistake. Romance and mischief ensues when plans go awry in No Other Duke But You by Valerie Bowman. SINGLE LADY SEEKS DUKELady Delilah Montebank has her marital sights set on the Duke of Branville. There’s just one problem... read more

The Playful Brides novels are:“Wholly satisfying.”—USA Today“Smart and sensual.”—RT Book Reviews“Delicious.” —Kirkus ReviewsA lady with a love potion. A Duke who takes it by mistake. Romance and mischief ensues when plans go awry in No Other Duke But You by Valerie Bowman. SINGLE LADY SEEKS DUKELady Delilah Montebank has her marital sights set on the Duke of Branville. There’s just one problem... read more

I'm Not Dying with You Tonight

Gilly Segal, Kimberly Jones

"A vital addition to the YA race relations canon."―Nic Stone, New York Times bestselling author of Dear MartinLena and Campbell aren't friends.Lena has her killer style, her awesome boyfriend, and a plan. She knows she's going to make it big. Campbell, on the other hand, is just trying to keep her head down and get through the year at her new school.When both girls attend the Friday-night foot... read more

"A vital addition to the YA race relations canon."―Nic Stone, New York Times bestselling author of Dear MartinLena and Campbell aren't friends.Lena has her killer style, her awesome boyfriend, and a plan. She knows she's going to make it big. Campbell, on the other hand, is just trying to keep her head down and get through the year at her new school.When both girls attend the Friday-night foot... read more

Dirty-Talking Cowboy: A Kinky Spurs Novel

Stacey Kennedy

Emma Monroe has returned to River Rock, Colorado, after the death of her grandmother. Now she's inherited a farm full of abused animals and she's working as a waitress at the local hotspot, Kinky Spurs. The last thing Emma wants in her life is a man, as she's still recovering from a recent heartbreak. But when a sensual and powerful cowboy, Shep Blackshaw enters her life, Emma begins to want t... read more

Emma Monroe has returned to River Rock, Colorado, after the death of her grandmother. Now she's inherited a farm full of abused animals and she's working as a waitress at the local hotspot, Kinky Spurs. The last thing Emma wants in her life is a man, as she's still recovering from a recent heartbreak. But when a sensual and powerful cowboy, Shep Blackshaw enters her life, Emma begins to want t... read more

If I Loved You Less

Tamsen Parker

Matchmaking? Check. Surfing? Check. Falling in love? As if.Sunny, striking, and satisfied with her life in paradise, Theodosia Sullivan sees no need for marriage. She does, however, relish serving as matchmaker for everyone who crosses her path. As the manager of her family’s surf shop in Hanalei Bay, that includes locals and tourists alike.One person she won’t be playing Cupid for is the equa... read more

Matchmaking? Check. Surfing? Check. Falling in love? As if.Sunny, striking, and satisfied with her life in paradise, Theodosia Sullivan sees no need for marriage. She does, however, relish serving as matchmaker for everyone who crosses her path. As the manager of her family’s surf shop in Hanalei Bay, that includes locals and tourists alike.One person she won’t be playing Cupid for is the equa... read more

You Asked for Perfect

Laura Silverman

For fans of Adam Silvera and Nina LaCour comes a timely novel about a teen's struggle when academic success and happiness pull him in opposite directions.Senior Ariel Stone is the perfect college applicant: first chair violinist, dedicated volunteer, active synagogue congregant, and expected valedictorian. And he works hard―really hard―to make his success look effortless. A failed calculus qui... read more

For fans of Adam Silvera and Nina LaCour comes a timely novel about a teen's struggle when academic success and happiness pull him in opposite directions.Senior Ariel Stone is the perfect college applicant: first chair violinist, dedicated volunteer, active synagogue congregant, and expected valedictorian. And he works hard―really hard―to make his success look effortless. A failed calculus qui... read more

Sweet Home Highland Christmas (The Pennington Family)

May McGoldrick

May McGoldrick's Sweet Home Highland Christmas is a 2018 RITA® finalist for Romance Novellas! Freya Sutherland is a desperate aunt trying to keep custody of her precocious young niece, Ella. After the death of her father, Freya is willing to do anything to prove she's capable of being Ella's guardian, even if if means marrying for security instead of love.Recently retired from the military, Ca... read more

May McGoldrick's Sweet Home Highland Christmas is a 2018 RITA® finalist for Romance Novellas! Freya Sutherland is a desperate aunt trying to keep custody of her precocious young niece, Ella. After the death of her father, Freya is willing to do anything to prove she's capable of being Ella's guardian, even if if means marrying for security instead of love.Recently retired from the military, Ca... read more

Pretty Guilty Women: A Novel

Gina LaManna

Four Women. Four Confessions. One Murder.Something has gone terribly wrong at the Banks wedding. A man is dead. Four different women rush to offer confessions, each insisting that they committed the crime — alone. Ginger is holding her family together by a thread, and this wedding weekend is not the fabulous getaway she anticipated. Kate has enough money to buy her way out of anything. Well, a... read more

Four Women. Four Confessions. One Murder.Something has gone terribly wrong at the Banks wedding. A man is dead. Four different women rush to offer confessions, each insisting that they committed the crime — alone. Ginger is holding her family together by a thread, and this wedding weekend is not the fabulous getaway she anticipated. Kate has enough money to buy her way out of anything. Well, a... read more

Motherhood So White: A Memoir of Race, Gender, and Parenting in America

Nefertiti Austin

In America, Mother = WhiteThat's what Nefertiti, a single African American woman, discovered when she decided she wanted to adopt a Black baby boy out of the foster care system. Eager to finally join the motherhood ranks, Nefertiti was shocked when people started asking her why she wanted to adopt a "crack baby" or said that she would never be able to raise a Black son on her own. She realized... read more

In America, Mother = WhiteThat's what Nefertiti, a single African American woman, discovered when she decided she wanted to adopt a Black baby boy out of the foster care system. Eager to finally join the motherhood ranks, Nefertiti was shocked when people started asking her why she wanted to adopt a "crack baby" or said that she would never be able to raise a Black son on her own. She realized... read more

Fire on the Ice: Snow & Ice Games

Tamsen Parker

Welcome to the Snow and Ice Games where competition is not the only thing that is heating up! The fourth book in bestselling Tamsen Parker's romance series continues with two female skaters from opposite sides of the rink.Blaze Bellamy is the bad girl of the short track speed skating world. Looking like a roller derby bruiser when she’s not in her Team USA uniform, she’s an unlikely American h... read more

Welcome to the Snow and Ice Games where competition is not the only thing that is heating up! The fourth book in bestselling Tamsen Parker's romance series continues with two female skaters from opposite sides of the rink.Blaze Bellamy is the bad girl of the short track speed skating world. Looking like a roller derby bruiser when she’s not in her Team USA uniform, she’s an unlikely American h... read more

Between a Rock and a Hard Place (Bend or Break Book 6)

Amy Jo Cousins

When friends lose the benefits, can the friendship be saved?Love Me Like A RockWith the right art tools, there’s almost nothing Austin can’t make real. Except an official relationship with his best friend, rowing teammate and occasional hookup, Vinnie.Emotional and sexual frustration fuel a spark between Austin and Sean, the nude model in drawing class. After a quick and very dirty encounter, ... read more

When friends lose the benefits, can the friendship be saved?Love Me Like A RockWith the right art tools, there’s almost nothing Austin can’t make real. Except an official relationship with his best friend, rowing teammate and occasional hookup, Vinnie.Emotional and sexual frustration fuel a spark between Austin and Sean, the nude model in drawing class. After a quick and very dirty encounter, ... read more

Little Lovely Things: A Novel

Maureen Joyce Connolly

"A shattering adventure." — Jacquelyn Mitchard, bestselling author of The Deep End of the OceanA mother's chance decision leads to a twist of fate that is every parent's worst nightmareIt is the wrong time to get sick. Speeding down the highway on the way to work, her two little girls sleeping in the back seat, medical resident Claire Rawlings doesn't have time for the nausea overtaking her. B... read more

"A shattering adventure." — Jacquelyn Mitchard, bestselling author of The Deep End of the OceanA mother's chance decision leads to a twist of fate that is every parent's worst nightmareIt is the wrong time to get sick. Speeding down the highway on the way to work, her two little girls sleeping in the back seat, medical resident Claire Rawlings doesn't have time for the nausea overtaking her. B... read more

Slammed (A San Amaro Singles Book)

Kelly Jamieson

Love’s a wave. And they’re about to get slammed.San Amaro Singles Book 3Brooke Lowry has a mission: fly to Tahiti, pluck PR nightmare Dylan Schell out of whatever party he’s in, bring him home and clean up his image. It was her idea for Jackson Cole clothing company to sponsor the pro surfer. But the chances of saving this deal—and her career—look pretty slim when she finds the sexy party boy ... read more

Love’s a wave. And they’re about to get slammed.San Amaro Singles Book 3Brooke Lowry has a mission: fly to Tahiti, pluck PR nightmare Dylan Schell out of whatever party he’s in, bring him home and clean up his image. It was her idea for Jackson Cole clothing company to sponsor the pro surfer. But the chances of saving this deal—and her career—look pretty slim when she finds the sexy party boy ... read more

Courage to be Counted: A WWII romance (A Clubmobile Girls Novel Book 1)

Eleri Grace

As the bombs fall on Europe, their love affair must survive a deadly war… Vivian Lambert wants to do her part. When she wins a coveted overseas post with the Red Cross, she focuses on her war service. Falling hard for a sexy pilot wasn't part of her plan. Jack Nielsen has a mission. Motivated by patriotic duty and desire to avenge the death of his best friend, Jack commands a ten-man B-17 crew... read more

As the bombs fall on Europe, their love affair must survive a deadly war… Vivian Lambert wants to do her part. When she wins a coveted overseas post with the Red Cross, she focuses on her war service. Falling hard for a sexy pilot wasn't part of her plan. Jack Nielsen has a mission. Motivated by patriotic duty and desire to avenge the death of his best friend, Jack commands a ten-man B-17 crew... read more

Heartwood Box

Ann Aguirre

Heartwood Box is a dark, romantic YA suspense novel with an SF edge from New York Times bestselling author Ann Aguirre…In this tiny, terrifying town, the lost are never found.When Araceli Flores Harper is sent to stay with her great-aunt Ottilie in her ramshackle Victorian home, the plan is simple. She’ll buckle down and get ready for college. Life won’t be exciting, but she’ll cope, right?Wro... read more

Heartwood Box is a dark, romantic YA suspense novel with an SF edge from New York Times bestselling author Ann Aguirre…In this tiny, terrifying town, the lost are never found.When Araceli Flores Harper is sent to stay with her great-aunt Ottilie in her ramshackle Victorian home, the plan is simple. She’ll buckle down and get ready for college. Life won’t be exciting, but she’ll cope, right?Wro... read more

Cold Heart, Warm Cowboy (Cold River Ranch Book 2)

Caitlin Crews

A game of pretend with the highest stakes of all in the latest novel of breathtaking romance from USA Today bestselling author Caitlin CrewsTy Everett ran off to the rodeo when he turned eighteen and has been riding bulls ever since…until his last fall causes partial amnesia and he must return to Cold River Ranch to figure out what comes next. But how can he pick his next move when he can’t re... read more

A game of pretend with the highest stakes of all in the latest novel of breathtaking romance from USA Today bestselling author Caitlin CrewsTy Everett ran off to the rodeo when he turned eighteen and has been riding bulls ever since…until his last fall causes partial amnesia and he must return to Cold River Ranch to figure out what comes next. But how can he pick his next move when he can’t re... read more

Bed of Flowers (Sweetness and Light Book 1)

Erin Satie

Bonny Reed is beautiful, inside and out. A loyal friend and loving daughter, she’s newly engaged to her small town’s most eligible bachelor. She’s happy for herself—but mostly for her family, who need the security her marriage will bring. An old enemy shatters her illusions. First Baron Loel cost Bonny’s family her fortune. Now he’s insisting that her fiancé has hidden flaws, secrets so dark t... read more

Bonny Reed is beautiful, inside and out. A loyal friend and loving daughter, she’s newly engaged to her small town’s most eligible bachelor. She’s happy for herself—but mostly for her family, who need the security her marriage will bring. An old enemy shatters her illusions. First Baron Loel cost Bonny’s family her fortune. Now he’s insisting that her fiancé has hidden flaws, secrets so dark t... read more

Barely Undercover (Legal Heat Book 2)

Sarah Castille

With passion at full throttle, there's no turning back..."Sexy men, sassy women, hilarious dialogue, page turning suspense, panty melting passion, and heart melting emotion." - iScream Books Blog, 5 starsWhen private investigator Lana Parker follows a dangerous biker into an underground club, James Hunter is the last man she expects to see. But there he is, all dark looks and chiseled charms, ... read more

With passion at full throttle, there's no turning back..."Sexy men, sassy women, hilarious dialogue, page turning suspense, panty melting passion, and heart melting emotion." - iScream Books Blog, 5 starsWhen private investigator Lana Parker follows a dangerous biker into an underground club, James Hunter is the last man she expects to see. But there he is, all dark looks and chiseled charms, ... read more

Red, White & Royal Blue: A Novel

Casey McQuiston

A *MUST-READ BOOK* for US WEEKLY, OPRAHMAG.COM, POPSUGAR, BUSTLE, BUZZFEED, and more! What happens when America's First Son falls in love with the Prince of Wales?When his mother became President, Alex Claremont-Diaz was promptly cast as the American equivalent of a young royal. Handsome, charismatic, genius—his image is pure millennial-marketing gold for the White House. There's only one prob... read more

A *MUST-READ BOOK* for US WEEKLY, OPRAHMAG.COM, POPSUGAR, BUSTLE, BUZZFEED, and more! What happens when America's First Son falls in love with the Prince of Wales?When his mother became President, Alex Claremont-Diaz was promptly cast as the American equivalent of a young royal. Handsome, charismatic, genius—his image is pure millennial-marketing gold for the White House. There's only one prob... read more

Beginner's Luck (Chance of a Lifetime Book 1)

Kate Clayborn

When three friends impulsively buy a lottery ticket, they never suspect the many ways their lives will change—or that for each of them, love will be the biggest win of all. Kit Averin is anything but a gambler. A scientist with a quiet, steady job at a university, Kit’s focus has always been maintaining the acceptable status quo. A sudden windfall doesn’t change that, with one exception: the f... read more

When three friends impulsively buy a lottery ticket, they never suspect the many ways their lives will change—or that for each of them, love will be the biggest win of all. Kit Averin is anything but a gambler. A scientist with a quiet, steady job at a university, Kit’s focus has always been maintaining the acceptable status quo. A sudden windfall doesn’t change that, with one exception: the f... read more

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