Elizabeth DeNoma

Elizabeth DeNoma – Editor

Expert developmental editor/book coach/proposal writer with over 20 years' experience. Fun to work with, always delivers on time.


Former senior editor at one of the "Big 6" specializing in developmental editing of narrative nonfiction and literary and historical fiction. Some of my titles include: The Murmur of Bees by Sofia Segovia, An American Princess by Annejet van der Zijl, The Strange Journey of Alice Pendelbury by Marc Levy, GO by Kazuki Kaneishiro and A Drop of Midnight by Jason Diakité.

All have been best-sellers in one form or another (Amazon, Wall Street Journal, Audible, and so forth) and several have won prizes.

My feedback at all levels is sensitive, candid, clear, and implementable.

Which services do I offer?

Developmental editing is much deeper than a high-level editorial assessment. At this stage, I’ll help you ensure that your work, whether fiction or nonfiction, reads smoothly in terms of content and structure. I'll make detailed notes throughout your manuscript, as well as providing a detailed summary covering the entire book. We'll have a phone call at the end of the process, if you'd like one, when you've had a chance to review all the suggestions.

Examples of suggestions might include reworking for organization, adding or removing material for flow or clarification - streamlining the narrative arc in a number of different ways

For fiction, a developmental edit takes into account the content and structure of the book - things like the narrative arc, potential plot holes, anything that hinders the reader’s understanding of the narrative (as appropriate, of course, sometimes opacity is intended!).

For nonfiction, the subject of the book and the way the topics are laid out, as well as deep knowledge of the target audience (academic, general, or popular) is of primary importance. In some cases, fact-checking is also involved in a nonfiction developmental edit.

Proposal writing - For those looking to secure literary representation, it's important to know how and who to approach - and to have the materials you need in tip-top shape. Whether you simply need another pair of eyes, or you want to hand over the writing of the proposal, I can help you craft a compelling proposal to improve your chances of getting an agent.

Book coaching - If you need help getting your book finished, upleveling an initial draft, or navigating the waters of publishing, consider signing up for book coaching for individualized insight, guidance, and advice.

NOTE - As much as I would love to work on smaller pieces, my current schedule doesn't allow me to take on the management of manuscripts under 40k words or to provide customized work samples, though I'm happy to provide examples of earlier work. Thanks for your understanding!

Biographies & Memoirs Health & Wellbeing History LGBTQ Non-Fiction
Historical Fiction LGBTQ Fiction Literary Fiction Women's Fiction
English (US)
  • Fulbright Scholar, SWEA Literary Scholar

Work experience


Mar, 2012 — Mar, 2020 (about 8 years)

Acquired and edited international works of fiction and nonfiction.

Elizabeth has 40 reviews





Caitlin M.

Caitlin M.

May, 2024

Elizabeth helped me with two developmental edits. I had a lot of big ideas for my book, but not a clear path on how to weave the story together. Elizabeth was able to take a look at everything with a fresh pair of eyes and make fundamental plot changes to help guide the reader through the story. I cannot recommend her enough! Because of her, I have a publisher that is currently considering my b...
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Elizabeth D.
Thank you so much, Caitlin, I loved working on your book and look forward to seeing where it goes! Please keep me posted!
Kathy L.

Kathy L.

Apr, 2024

Working with Elizabeth was a joy. She answered all my questions and provided valuable information about how to proceed. Additionally, she listened deeply and asked great questions. I absolutely felt at ease with her and really appreciated her collaborative approach. I would most definitely recommend Elizabeth for any phase of your particular project, and I intend to seek her out again in the f...
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Elizabeth D.
Thank you. Kathy! It was a real pleasure to discuss your project!
Jane C.

Jane C.

Apr, 2024

Elizabeth is a total professional who also brings warmth and empathy to her work. Her feedback on my memoir manuscript showed a deep understanding of the material and my goals for it. She has good instincts for story, and I trust she guided me in the right direction. Her experience in publishing is another plus for those looking to traditionally publish. I would definitely work with Elizabeth a...
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Elizabeth D.
Thank you so much, Jane! I loved working on your book and can’t wait to see where you take it!
Jordan W.

Jordan W.

Mar, 2024

Elizabeth was fantastic to work with and super helpful with my book project! Hopefully we will be getting published shortly :)
Danielle V.

Danielle V.

Feb, 2024

I enjoyed my time with Elizabeth. She gave a good, hard push but was kind and supportive through it all. Thanks to her and her thoughtful notes in the developmental edit, I have my next milestones and direction in which I can take my book. My hope is to work with her again soon!
Elizabeth D.
Thank you so much, Danielle! it was such fun to work with you and your memoir! I can't wait to see the book develop.

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