Dan Larsen

Dan Larsen – Editor

Fiction editor, 25+ years, 1,000+ titles, top publishers: Penguin, Harlequin, Disney, Pocket Books, etc. Developmental, line, copy editing.


I have been a freelance editor for 25 years, focusing exclusively on fiction. Over that time I have edited well over a thousand titles, most of them for top New York publishers, including three of the Big Five, and many of them (at a guess, a few hundred anyway) ending up on bestseller lists.

My past publishing clients have included Pocket Books (Simon & Schuster), St. Martin's Press, Houghton Mifflin, Time Warner, Disney, Walker, and Kensington. From 2005 until 2018 I worked only with Penguin and Harlequin. I did copyediting for Penguin and line (or substantive) editing for Harlequin.

For the past several years I have limited my editing to working directly with authors, to help them look their best in print. I've been a Reedsy editor since 2017, and I've been with another professional editing group since 2016. With my experience, I have an insider's view on what agents and publishers want. More importantly, on what works and what doesn't work in fiction.

And if you want to self-publish, you need an editor even more than if you plan to go with traditional publishing; it's all on you to get it right. You won't have the expertise and experience of a publisher's staff of professionals to polish your work till it's marketable.

“Copy editors can easily make or break a good book, can turn a good book into a great book, an interesting book into a gripping book. I’ve had some dreadful copy editors and some good ones. Dan is the best!” –Faith Hunter, the New York Times bestselling Jane Yellowrock series

“Dan was the copyeditor for my Tango Key books when I was at Kensington. He’s terrific! And he remains my favorite copyeditor!” –TJ MacGregor, the bestselling Tango Key series

“A good copyeditor is an essential component to any novel, and with his keen eye, diligence and attention to detail Dan's has proved invaluable time and again.” –Tom Wood, the international bestselling Victor Assassin series

“Dan has a very good grasp of grammar and punctuation, and is proficient in observing appropriate style guidelines. He is also knowledgeable about many topics that come up in various novels. I’ve worked with Dan for more than a decade and always found him to be a reliable and conscientious professional.” –Daniel Walsh, assistant director, Production Editorial, Berkley (Penguin Random House)
Fantasy Mystery & Crime Paranormal Romance Romance Thriller & Suspense Urban Fantasy Women's Fiction Young Adult
English (US)
  • qualified (through testing) for substantive fiction editing, copyediting, and proofreading with the Christian Editor Connection

Work experience


Jan, 2017 — Present

Penguin, Harlequin, Kensington, Dorchester

Jan, 2000 — Jan, 2018 (about 18 years)

I worked for Kensington (Pinnacle and Zebra) and Dorchester (Leisure Books and Love Spell) for about ten years. For both of these I did nothing but fiction. Thrillers, mysteries, romance, paranormal, horror, fantasy, urban fantasy, women's fiction, action/adventure, YA, and westerns.

Sometime in 2005-06 I started working for both Penguin and Harlequin. My workload from these two companies gradually increased till I had to drop Kensington. (Dorchester folded in 2010.) I worked directly for the managing editor at Penguin, who sent me about half of his workload every month. Alas, the Penguin imprints I got all my work from were closed shortly after Penguin's merger with Random House.


It takes courage to fall in love To everyone in her rural Ohio community, Jude Foster O'Leary's dead husband is a war hero. Yet how can she forgive him for choosing the military over his family when they needed him most? And now the charitable foundation she e... read more
The Final ChapterSemi-reformed party girl Summer Smythe is finally feeling at home at the Hibiscus Pointe retirement community. All that’s left to do is replace her late grandma’s massive book collection with a TV. Donating them to the community library is the... read more
From the New York Times bestselling author of the Fallen series and the Remy Chandler series, a new dark fantasy series filled with demons, exorcisms, and the fight against the worst that hell has to offer... There is more to our world than meets the eye—darke... read more
New Leaf (Mystic Creek)

Catherine Anderson

The New York Times bestselling author of Silver Thaw returns to Mystic Creek in a novel about a love that inspires the courage to start over…and the strength to reclaim a dream. When Taffeta Brown was viciously betrayed by her wealthy husband, she lost everyth... read more
From the New York Times bestselling author of the Souls of Fire novels comes the second in the futuristic fantasy series that will make you want to keep the lights on... When the bombs that stopped the species war tore holes in the veil between worlds, they al... read more

Christopher Pike

Julia is a young woman with extraordinary powers, with the ability to heal people. She comes from a tradition of witches, but before Julia's mother died, she warned her never to look in water that had moonlight shining on it. Unfortunately she does - and she s... read more
From the New York Times bestselling author of I Thee Wed comes a Wicked Worthingtons novel of a love that will not be denied.... As a ship’s captain, highborn bastard Morgan Pryce has spent his life sailing away from England. The last thing he needs is a wife.... read more
The third compulsively readable book in the smart and witty series about a high school for gifted students. Miranda Bloom has scored an adorable, lacrosse-playing boyfriend, Dex McConnell, and an awesomely easy summer job looking after a ten year old mini-geni... read more
Love, Alice

Barbara Davis

A sweeping southern women’s fiction novel about forgiving the past one letter at a time—from the author of When Never Comes.A year ago, Dovie Larkin’s life was shattered when her fiancé committed suicide just weeks before their wedding. Now, plagued by guilt, ... read more
Detective Helen Grace is on the trail of a twisted serial killer in this riveting thriller in the “gripping” (USA Today) international bestselling series.Ruby wakes up in a strange room. Her captor calmly explains that no one is looking for her. No one wants h... read more
The new Deadly Ops novel from the New York Times bestselling author of Shattered Duty—in the series that delivers “fast-paced romantic suspense that will keep you on the edge of your seat!”* When an assassin tries to kill undercover DEA agent Tucker Pankov the... read more
A brand new series from New York Times bestselling author Chloe Neill. Seven years ago, the Veil that separates humanity from what lies beyond was torn apart, and New Orleans was engulfed in a supernatural war. Now, those with paranormal powers have been confi... read more
THE NEW YORK TIMES BESTSELLER“Once again, Garwood delivers another suspenseful, highly entertaining and romantic story line in Wired.”—The Associated PressA beautiful computer hacker and a bad-boy FBI agent must collaborate—in more ways than one—in the sizzlin... read more
Jane Yellowrock has her hands full in the latest novel in the New York Times bestselling series that captures “the essence of urban fantasy” (SF Site). Slaying vampires is child’s play for skinwalker Jane Yellowrock. But handling the complicated politics of Ne... read more
The enigmatic assassin Victor returns in an explosive thriller from the international bestselling author of A Time to Die and The Darkest Day. SOMETIMES THE ONLY WAY TO LIVE... Victor is the ultimate predator. He surfaces to kill, then disappears into thin air... read more
The latest deliciously appealing mystery from the author of Death of a Chocolate Cheater... Anxious to take a break from bustling San Francisco, Darcy and her Aunt Abby pack up the food truck and head for the apple festival at Apple Valley, California. Aunt Ab... read more
The Christmas Triplets by Tanya Michaels released on Nov 08, 2016 is available now for purchase.
James Becker, New York Times bestselling author of The Lost Treasure of the Templars and The Lost Testament, delivers a breakneck thriller continuing the adventures of antiquarian bookseller Robin Jessop and encryption expert David Mallory.While trying to deci... read more
When a private jet containing enough infectious toxins to destroy most of humanity crashes into the rugged California high country during a blizzard, an expert mountaineer and a female FBI agent discover the wreakage and its deadly contents, and soon they beco... read more
Fractured Memory by Jordyn Redwood released on Jul 05, 2016 is available now for purchase.
The witch’s redemption…Kelyn Saint-Pierre always had a bit of a thing for Valor Hearst. But after he makes a harrowing sacrifice to save the tomboyish witch from a gruesome death, Kelyn’s certain that any spark between them is gone forever.Valor wishes she’d k... read more
This town's not big enough for both of us… Self-proclaimed spinster Jessamine Lassiter is striving to keep Smoke River's newspaper afloat when Cole Sanders rides into town to start up a rival paper. Emotions run high as Cole's constant, infuriating presence ca... read more
Curl up with the latest from the national bestselling author of Borrowed Crime...Springtime in Chilson, Michigan, means it's librarian Minnie Hamilton's favorite time of year: maple syrup season! But her excitement fades when her favorite syrup provider, Henry... read more
From the author of Iron Axe comes the second Book of Blood and Iron…Ages ago, those who had the ability to change their shape lost it, leading to endless bloody battles for supremacy between the races—until one reluctant hero stepped forth to restore peace to ... read more
A man with nothing left to lose finds a reason to fight in this Ralph Compton western.Requiem, formerly known as Apache Creek, is a town that has seen better days. After a plague of cholera swept through the streets, the only folk left behind are ghosts, inclu... read more
Will Summers is a horse trader with a reputation that intimidates the most lawless of men. When the coldblooded Bendigo Brothers make off with his horses, they don't know what they're in for. Summers has a history of tracking down animals, and when he finds th... read more
After being commissioned to find a rare book, Librarian Irene and her assistant, Kai, head to Prohibition-era New York and are thrust into the middle of a political fight with dragons, mobsters, and Fae.In a 1920s-esque New York, Prohibition is in force; fedor... read more
Cassie Palmer can see the future, talk to ghosts, and travel through time—but nothing’s prepared her for this. Ever since being stuck with the job of pythia, the chief seer of the supernatural world, Cassie Palmer has been playing catch up. Catch up to the lif... read more
Editorial Reviews From Publishers Weekly Fans of the Twilight Zone should relish MacGregor's newest offering (after Out of Sight); reading this spine-tingling suspense novel is like spiraling headfirst into the most disturbing episode ever aired. As Mira Moral... read more
Available for the first time in eBook! Read the thriller that launched the award-winning New York Times bestselling Louis Kincaid series.In the quaint tourist town of Loon Lake, Mich., a killer is taking his vengeance. One by one, the bodies of cops are found,... read more

Dan has 40 reviews





M M.

M M.

May, 2024

Extremely professional and thorough. Dan understood my characters and his input on their development was invaluable. His insight on the strengths and weaknesses of my story progression was pivotal in my revisions (and future writing). The editorial assessment was precise, giving me a clear blueprint for corrections, alterations... and eradicating unnecessary habits. Would definitely use Dan ...
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Tammy B.

Tammy B.

Mar, 2024

Highly recommended! Strong attention to detail.
Joachim B.

Joachim B.

Jan, 2024

Invaluable advice, grammatical perfection, what more could one ask for? Thanks again, Dan!
Zeek S.

Zeek S.

Dec, 2023

Dan is a top shelf editor. Besides having a professional eye to catch problems that slip by many authors his work ethic is impeccable. I went through several editors. Most only completely a portion of what I hired them to do. But Dan delivered the entire package in half the time. Plus, he went above and beyond to answer questions referencing the nuances of fictional writing. I highly recommend ...
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Joachim B.

Joachim B.

Oct, 2023

This was my second book with Dan. Like the first, Dan was attentive, diligent, and full of valuable insight. I recommend him without hesitation.

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