Frances Phillips

Frances Phillips - Editor

New York City, NY, USA

I specialize in authors with complex ideas who write for the general public, polishing your words until they are uniquely irresistible.

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Overview

I am a full-time freelance editor and ghostwriter with extensive experience in nonfiction and fiction titles--everything from social science trade books and articles to self-help, memoir, fiction, and story collections.

I work with purpose. I have a Master’s in Public Health from Columbia and a Bachelor’s in Poetry & Philosophy from Johns Hopkins, which means I care about using language to convey important ideas to the world. It also means I’m equally at home in metaphor and fact: whatever gets the job done, the reader hooked, and the ideas across.

I’m precise. I became a professional editor because I love nothing more than showing a writer how to make their ideas crisp, clear, and impossible to ignore. Being a very curious generalist makes me an ideal beta reader for up-market and popular nonfiction, as well as literary fiction. It also means that if you contact me, I’ll probably look up your field or topic and do a bit of research before we even speak.

I’m direct. My working style is collaborative if needed, generally asynchronous, and highly responsive. My clients and I usually get the work done on our own and dazzle each other at each new step. The one thing we always agree on is that our work is in service to the writing. Egos at the door—let’s make this as good as it can possibly be.

I read the end first. The first page I turn to whenever I open a book is the acknowledgments section—because I know how much work goes into writing and I want to pay respect to every hand and heart that played a role in getting those words out into the world. Also, I’m nosey.
Languages
English (US)
Non-Fiction
Art
Psychology
Self-Help & Self-Improvement
Sociology
Fiction
Contemporary Fiction

Work experience

Full-time freelance editor

Self-employed
January, 2005 – Present (over 17 years)

I have provided non-fiction and fiction copy editing and developmental editing to a wide range of clients including published and award-winning authors of books, articles, and op-eds in topic areas such as medicine, reproductive and sexual health, gender studies, anthropology, psychology, health and wellness, photography, and memoir. Clients range from the Silver Hill Hospital to academics at Yale, Stanford, Amherst, McGill, Georgetown, and others. I have also been an instructor and content and curriculum editor and writer for the Story Is a State of Mind writing school.

Portfolio (5 selected works)

Testosterone

Rebecca M. Jordan-Young, Katrina Karkazis

Testosterone is neither the biological essence of manliness nor even the “male sex hormone.” It doesn’t predict competitiveness or aggressiveness, strength or sex drive. Rebecca Jordan-Young and Katrina Karkazis pry testosterone loose from more than a century of misconceptions that undermine science while making social fables seem scientific.

Testosterone is neither the biological essence of manliness nor even the “male sex hormone.” It doesn’t predict competitiveness or aggressiveness, strength or sex drive. Rebecca Jordan-Young and Katrina Karkazis pry testosterone loose from more than a century of misconceptions that undermine science while making social fables seem scientific.

Zolitude

Paige Cooper

WINNER OF THE 2018 QUEBEC WRITERS' FEDERATION CONCORDIA UNIVERSITY FIRST BOOK PRIZE LONGLISTED FOR THE 2018 SCOTIABANK GILLER PRIZE FINALIST FOR THE 2018 DANUTA GLEED LITERARY AWARD FINALIST FOR THE 2018 GOVERNOR GENERAL'S LITERARY AWARD FOR FICTION A GLOBE AND MAIL BEST BOOK OF 2018 A QUILL & QUIRE BOOK OF THE YEAR Fantastical, magnetic, and harsh—these are the women in Paige Cooper’s debut s... read more

WINNER OF THE 2018 QUEBEC WRITERS' FEDERATION CONCORDIA UNIVERSITY FIRST BOOK PRIZE LONGLISTED FOR THE 2018 SCOTIABANK GILLER PRIZE FINALIST FOR THE 2018 DANUTA GLEED LITERARY AWARD FINALIST FOR THE 2018 GOVERNOR GENERAL'S LITERARY AWARD FOR FICTION A GLOBE AND MAIL BEST BOOK OF 2018 A QUILL & QUIRE BOOK OF THE YEAR Fantastical, magnetic, and harsh—these are the women in Paige Cooper’s debut s... read more

Things That Art

Lochlann Jain

Lochlann Jain’s debut non-fiction graphic novel, Things That Art, playfully interrogates the order of things. Toying with the relationship between words and images, Jain’s whimsical compositions may seem straightforward. Upon closer inspection, however, the drawings reveal profound and startling paradoxes at the heart of how we make sense of the world. Commentaries by architect and theorist Ma... read more

Lochlann Jain’s debut non-fiction graphic novel, Things That Art, playfully interrogates the order of things. Toying with the relationship between words and images, Jain’s whimsical compositions may seem straightforward. Upon closer inspection, however, the drawings reveal profound and startling paradoxes at the heart of how we make sense of the world. Commentaries by architect and theorist Ma... read more

Radiant Shimmering Light

Sarah Selecky

A nuanced satire--both hilarious and disconcerting--that probes the blurred lines between empowerment, spirituality, and consumerism in our online lives.Lilian Quick is 40, single, and childless, working as a pet portrait artist. She paints the colored light only she can see, but animal aura portraits are a niche market at best. She's working hard to build her brand on social media and struggl... read more

A nuanced satire--both hilarious and disconcerting--that probes the blurred lines between empowerment, spirituality, and consumerism in our online lives.Lilian Quick is 40, single, and childless, working as a pet portrait artist. She paints the colored light only she can see, but animal aura portraits are a niche market at best. She's working hard to build her brand on social media and struggl... read more

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