Claire Strombeck

Claire Strombeck - Editor

Henley-on-Thames, UK

I have over 10 years' experience editing for top publishers, including Penguin Random House. Contact me for any editorial services.

Request a quote

Overview

As an editor for top publishers, including Penguin Random House and NB Publishers, I have edited and proofread award-winning, bestselling novels and narrative non-fiction texts. I am proud to have had a number of edited novels on bestseller lists, and long- and shortlisted for literary awards, including the Sunday Times Literary Prize and the Commonwealth Short Story Prize. I work closely with top authors including Imraan Coovadia, Rahla Xenopoulos, Carol Campbell, Qarnita Loxton, Fred Khumalo, and Niq Mhlongo, among many others. I also co-founded a highly successful online creative writing course with bestselling author, Mike Nicol, which ran for eight years. I thrive when collaborating with authors, assisting them to reach their writing potential and to create the strongest narrative possible. My specialist genres include literary fiction, women's fiction, crime, and memoirs, although I really love reading and editing any story that grabs my attention. My clients will attest to the fact that I am a supportive editor, who only ever gives constructive criticism. I focus on what you're doing right, so that you can do more of that. If you work with me, you will become a better, more confident writer, skilled in all the technical stuff and the things that readers want. My industry experience means I am perfectly placed to know what publishers want, and to shape your manuscripts and cover letters accordingly. Please contact me for any editorial services, including developmental and copy editing, manuscript reviews, and editing of cover letters.
Languages
English (UK)
English (US)
Non-Fiction
Biographies & Memoirs
Fiction
Chick Lit
Contemporary Romance
Cozy Mysteries
Literary Fiction
Thriller & Suspense

Certifications

  • First-class Master's Degree in English Literature
  • First-class Honour's Degree in English Literature

Work experience

Editor for NB Publishers

Self-employed
February, 2016 – Present (over 6 years)

• Copy-editor and proofreader
• Point of contact between commissioning editors, managing editors, and authors
• Write reader reports for potential publication and jacket copy
• Familiar with all stages of publication process
• Several works longlisted for the Sunday Times Literary Awards in 2019 and 2021
• Fred Khumalo’s Talk of the Town won 2020 SALA Nadine Gordimer Short Story Award

Co-founder and Supervisor

The Writers' Masterclass
January, 2013 – December, 2020 (almost 8 years)

• Independently run supervisory online, multimedia course, founded and supervised by internationally best-selling writer and journalist Mike Nicol and me
• Project-managed course for 25–30 students each year
• Created content on social media platforms to advertise course
• Supervised writing of 60,000-word novels/ non-fiction works
• Each completed year of the class produced at least one traditionally published writer

Creative Writing Teacher

GetSmarter (2U)
October, 2010 – December, 2015 (about 5 years)

• Taught online, multimedia creative-writing course alongside Ron Irwin (until end of 2011) and then Mike Nicol (until 2015)
• Liaison between clients and GetSmarter

Editor for Penguin Random House

Self-employed
June, 2010 – Present (about 12 years)

• Copy-editor and proofreader
• Point of contact between commissioning editors, managing editors, and authors
• Write reader reports for potential publication and jacket copy
• Familiar with all stages of publication process
• Several works longlisted for the Sunday Times Literary Awards in 2019 and 2021
• Irene Muchemi-Ndiritu’s short story, “The Blessing of Kali”, shortlisted for the Commonwealth Short Story Prize 2019
• Imran Garda’s The Thunder That Roars won the 2016 Olive Schreiner Prize for Prose; longlisted for the 2014 Etisalat Prize for Literature

Portfolio (27 selected works)

The Season of Glass

Xenopoulos, Rahla

Being Kari

Loxton, Qarnita

My Father Died for This

Calata, Lukhanyo, Calata, Abigail

Loves & Miracles of Pistola

Toffoli, Hilary Prendini

Nine Letters

Webb, John

An Unquiet Place

Houston, Clare

The Fall

Thorpe, Jen

The Delhi Deception

Sabharwal, Elana

Mermaid Fillet

Arderne, Mia

Being Shelley

Loxton, Qarnita

Only the Dead

Wende, Hamilton

Delilah Now Trending

Pamela Power

Single mom Delilah is thrilled when her darling daughter Daisy is tipped to become head girl of her prep school. But things don’t turn out quite as expected, and mother and daughter soon need to deal with much more than disappointment when Daisy’s long-time rival, Rosie, is seriously injured. Was it an accident or is someone to blame? Accusations are flung at Delilah’s daughter, both in the sc... read more

Single mom Delilah is thrilled when her darling daughter Daisy is tipped to become head girl of her prep school. But things don’t turn out quite as expected, and mother and daughter soon need to deal with much more than disappointment when Daisy’s long-time rival, Rosie, is seriously injured. Was it an accident or is someone to blame? Accusations are flung at Delilah’s daughter, both in the sc... read more

The Son of the House

Cheluchi Onyemelukwe-Onuobia

A COMPELLING STORY CELEBRATING THE RESILIENCE OF TWO WOMEN AS THEY NAVIGATE WHAT REMAINS A STRONGLY PATRIARCHAL NIGERIA “I absolutely loved his book. Nwabulu and Julie are incredible, fully formed and fully flaw, characters that walk straight off the page and nestle in your heart as you read on.”―Simon Savidge, The Frank Magazine Nwabulu has been a housemaid since the age of ten but her dreams... read more

A COMPELLING STORY CELEBRATING THE RESILIENCE OF TWO WOMEN AS THEY NAVIGATE WHAT REMAINS A STRONGLY PATRIARCHAL NIGERIA “I absolutely loved his book. Nwabulu and Julie are incredible, fully formed and fully flaw, characters that walk straight off the page and nestle in your heart as you read on.”―Simon Savidge, The Frank Magazine Nwabulu has been a housemaid since the age of ten but her dreams... read more

But Deliver Us from Evil

Lauri Kubuitsile

It is 1871 and Nthebolang and her mother must flee their home: her father has been accused of witchcraft and sentenced to death. For months they walk, sleeping in the open, living off the veld, until they are offered shelter in Ntsweng in the kingdom of Kgosi Sechele I. It is there, years later, that Nthebolang meets Beatrice, the wife of a cruel English missionary, and a woman who has had her... read more

It is 1871 and Nthebolang and her mother must flee their home: her father has been accused of witchcraft and sentenced to death. For months they walk, sleeping in the open, living off the veld, until they are offered shelter in Ntsweng in the kingdom of Kgosi Sechele I. It is there, years later, that Nthebolang meets Beatrice, the wife of a cruel English missionary, and a woman who has had her... read more

Glass House

Emezie, Chinenye

Shadow Flicker

Volker, Melissa A.

Claire has 23 reviews

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

Hannah Daly
Claire was amazing to work with. I chose her over several other editors as she simply understood and was passionate about my MS. From start to finish, she was a join to work with, very insightful, passionate and genuine. She is excellent at her job. I cannot recommend her highly enough. If you get to work with Claire you are in for an amazing experience.

Hannah Daly, July 2022


Paula Evans
As a debut author, my gratitude for Claire’s genre and grammatical knowledge, and her attention to detail, cannot be overstated. I feel lucky to have secured her service, which was always timely, encouraging and professional.

Paula Evans, July 2022


Pina Albo
This is the second time I have engaged Claire to edit my novel and I am as impressed with her the second time around as I was the first. Claire is insightful, thorough and detail oriented. Her comments are clear and specific and made making changes to the manuscript easy. If I had a third book ready for edit, I would engage Claire again!

Pina Albo, July 2022


michael thomas
Claire was clear and focused even before we had agreed on the collaboration, but she was never robotic or rigid. She had the ability to fluidly transition between macro and micro issues at every stage of the project. I found myself being challenged and enlightened without being schooled. And most important by far - it was brilliant fun to work with her.

michael thomas, June 2022


Aimee Rebecca
As a first-time author, I was nervous about submitting my manuscript for editing, but Claire’s feedback was kind, constructive, and very helpful. She explained why certain words and phrases needed to be altered so I would know not to make the same mistakes in the future. She also gave really valuable insights into how she experienced the book as a reader (knowing the jokes hit right was such a ...
Read more

Aimee Rebecca, June 2022

Read more reviews

Explore the Reedsy Community

Reedsy is a community of top publishing professionals. Join Reedsy today to browse 1000+ profiles.

Lisa Findley

15 years' experience working on literature & nonfiction. Gentle & encouraging approach appreciated by first-time authors.

London, UK

Eric Braun

Editor and ghostwriter with 2+ decades in publishing. Specialize in children's fiction and NF but love working on books for any audience.

Minneapolis, MN, USA

To view 1,000+ more profiles, Join Reedsy