Hannah Sheppard

Hannah Sheppard - Editor Tick

London, United Kingdom

Development Editor and Literary Agent with fifteen year's experience of trade publishing.

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Overview

Reviews (8)
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My interest in editing was sparked by a love of stories. One of my earliest memories is being captivated by the unfolding magic of The Lion, The Witch and The Wardrobe and spending the next year hopefully investigating any antique wardrobe I encountered in the hope of finding an entrance to Narnia.

I carry this passion for stories into my work as a freelance editor and literary agent. As a teenager I was an avid reader of detective and mystery stories (Nancy Drew was my hero) and I harboured a secret ambition to become a police investigator. Over the years of working in publishing (at Macmillan Children's Books and Headline, part of the Hachette group) I’ve convinced myself that being an editor is not dissimilar to being a detective. When I’m helping an author develop a novel I’m looking for the holes in the plot, asking the questions that haven’t been covered yet and ensuring everything’s as clear and true to the story as possible.

Languages
English (UK)
English (US)
Fiction
Children's - Middle Grade
Crime & Mystery
Dystopian
Horror
Humor & Comedy
Literature
Romance
Thriller
Women's Fiction
Young Adult & Teen

Work experience

Literary Agent

DHH Literary Agency
July, 2013 – Present (almost 5 years)

I'm an associate agent at the DHH Literary Agency in London. I'm building my own client list and represent authors such as:
Abi Elphinstone
Keris Stainton
Adam Hamdy
Chris McGeorge

Freelance Editor

N/A
September, 2012 – Present (almost 6 years)

I'm a freelance editor working through literary consultancies and directly with authors. I can offer editorial reports focusing on structural development as well as line editing but I don't offer copy/proof reading.

Senior Commissioning Editor

Headline (Hachette Group)
August, 2007 – September, 2012 (about 5 years)

I ran the YA and crossover list at Headline and am proud to have commissioned, amongst others, Julianna Baggott’s PURE trilogy, gorgeous contemporary romance from Jennifer E. Smith, illustrated YA novels from Cathy Brett, teen horror from Andrew Hammond and stunning debut HEART-SHAPED BRUISE by Tanya Byrne which was shortlisted for the CWA John Creasey Dagger and longlisted for the Branford Boase Award. Tanya was also shortlisted for New Writer of the Year at the National Book Awards.

Assistant Editor

Macmillan Children's Books
October, 2002 – July, 2007 (over 4 years)

I worked my way up from Editorial Secretary to Assistant editor during the 5 years I worked at Macmillan Children's Books. I supported the senior editors in the department in the publication of their authors (Judy Blume, Frank Cottrell Boyce, Eva Ibbotson, Meg Cabot, Francis Hardinge) and started to commission my own list.

Portfolio (13 selected works)

Heart-shaped Bruise

Tanya Byrne

They say I'm evil. The police. The newspapers. The girls from school who sigh on the six o'clock news and say they always knew there was something not quite right about me. And everyone believes it. Including you. But you don't know. You don't know who I used to be. Who I could have been. Sometimes I wonder if I'll ever shake off my mistakes or if I'll just carry them around with me forever li... read more

They say I'm evil. The police. The newspapers. The girls from school who sigh on the six o'clock news and say they always knew there was something not quite right about me. And everyone believes it. Including you. But you don't know. You don't know who I used to be. Who I could have been. Sometimes I wonder if I'll ever shake off my mistakes or if I'll just carry them around with me forever li... read more

City of Fae

Pippa DaCosta

Look, but don't touch. Touch, but don't feel. Feel, but never ever love. From the moment Alina touches London's hottest fae superstar, breaking one of the laws founded to protect all of her kind, her fate – and the fae – close in. Below ground, the fae High Queen plots to claim the city as her own and places her pawns, ready for the battle to come. A battle she cannot lose, but for one small p... read more

Look, but don't touch. Touch, but don't feel. Feel, but never ever love. From the moment Alina touches London's hottest fae superstar, breaking one of the laws founded to protect all of her kind, her fate – and the fae – close in. Below ground, the fae High Queen plots to claim the city as her own and places her pawns, ready for the battle to come. A battle she cannot lose, but for one small p... read more

Everything Is Fine (And Other Lies I Tell Myself)

Cathy Brett

Interwoven with tales of World War I, this is a story about growing up, moving on and the strength of a family.Things haven't been going so well for fifteen-year-old Esther Armstrong. With her brother Max - her closest ally - absent, she's forced to face everything alone, not least her parents' heated arguments. As the summer holidays stretch endlessly ahead, she's desperate for something, any... read more

Interwoven with tales of World War I, this is a story about growing up, moving on and the strength of a family.Things haven't been going so well for fifteen-year-old Esther Armstrong. With her brother Max - her closest ally - absent, she's forced to face everything alone, not least her parents' heated arguments. As the summer holidays stretch endlessly ahead, she's desperate for something, any... read more

Follow Me Down

Tanya Byrne

The sensationally good Tanya Byrne returns with her new novel - a dark, compulsive tale of obsession and betrayalWhen sixteen-year-old Adamma Okomma, a Nigerian diplomat's daughter, arrives at exclusive Crofton College in Wiltshire, she is immediately drawn to beautiful, tempestuous, unpredictable Scarlett Chiltern. Adamma and Scarlett become inseparable - until they fall for the same guy. Soo... read more

The sensationally good Tanya Byrne returns with her new novel - a dark, compulsive tale of obsession and betrayalWhen sixteen-year-old Adamma Okomma, a Nigerian diplomat's daughter, arrives at exclusive Crofton College in Wiltshire, she is immediately drawn to beautiful, tempestuous, unpredictable Scarlett Chiltern. Adamma and Scarlett become inseparable - until they fall for the same guy. Soo... read more

The Dreamsnatcher

Abi Elphinstone

'A richly detailed and evoked gypsy forest world, dripping with ancient magic, but also action-packed with wild pony chases and death-defying escapes… Fast paced and full of charm' Piers Torday, Award-winning author of The Last Wild 'An outstanding debut packed with suspense, adventure and heart' Katherine Rundell, author of the bestselling Rooftoppers 'So fast paced it left me breathless... T... read more

'A richly detailed and evoked gypsy forest world, dripping with ancient magic, but also action-packed with wild pony chases and death-defying escapes… Fast paced and full of charm' Piers Torday, Award-winning author of The Last Wild 'An outstanding debut packed with suspense, adventure and heart' Katherine Rundell, author of the bestselling Rooftoppers 'So fast paced it left me breathless... T... read more

Young, Loaded and Fabulous

Kate Kingsley

Addictive, scandalous and glamourous new fiction series for sophisticated teens Alice and Tally have ruled, undisputed, at the top of St. Cecilias social hierarchy since their arrival at the school three years ago. But now trouble is brewing; friendships with boys are getting complicated and sparking jealousies between the girls, and, to make matters worse, a thoroughly unwelcome American girl... read more

Addictive, scandalous and glamourous new fiction series for sophisticated teens Alice and Tally have ruled, undisputed, at the top of St. Cecilias social hierarchy since their arrival at the school three years ago. But now trouble is brewing; friendships with boys are getting complicated and sparking jealousies between the girls, and, to make matters worse, a thoroughly unwelcome American girl... read more

Counting Stars

Keris Stainton

A new life in a new city - what could possibly go wrong . . . ?When eighteen-year-old Anna leaves school and moves to Liverpool, she feels like her life is finally beginning. She's landed her dream job at a theatre, and she's moving into an exciting (if not slightly run-down) houseshare on a buzzing street lined with shops, bars, and buskers. Best of all, her new flatmates are kind, welcoming ... read more

A new life in a new city - what could possibly go wrong . . . ?When eighteen-year-old Anna leaves school and moves to Liverpool, she feels like her life is finally beginning. She's landed her dream job at a theatre, and she's moving into an exciting (if not slightly run-down) houseshare on a buzzing street lined with shops, bars, and buskers. Best of all, her new flatmates are kind, welcoming ... read more

Alone

D J Brazier

The trip of a lifetime - that’s what it was supposed to be, paid for with money Gran left thirteen-year old Sam in her will, but when the small plane taking Sam and his Dad back to the airport crashes in the jungle, Sam is left alone and terrified.As time passes with no sign of rescue, Sam grows weaker and has to dig deep to find levels of resolve and resourcefulness he never knew he had in or... read more

The trip of a lifetime - that’s what it was supposed to be, paid for with money Gran left thirteen-year old Sam in her will, but when the small plane taking Sam and his Dad back to the airport crashes in the jungle, Sam is left alone and terrified.As time passes with no sign of rescue, Sam grows weaker and has to dig deep to find levels of resolve and resourcefulness he never knew he had in or... read more

Pendulum

Adam Hamdy

James Patterson has hailed Adam Hamdy's PENDULUM as 'one of the best thrillers of the year' saying he read it in 'one gloriously suspenseful weekend'. A photo-journalist is targeted for death in this high-concept, twisting, dangerous journey through a digital underworld. If you love Simon Kernick and Terry Hayes' I AM PILGRIM, read this.You wake. Confused. Disorientated.A noose is round your n... read more

James Patterson has hailed Adam Hamdy's PENDULUM as 'one of the best thrillers of the year' saying he read it in 'one gloriously suspenseful weekend'. A photo-journalist is targeted for death in this high-concept, twisting, dangerous journey through a digital underworld. If you love Simon Kernick and Terry Hayes' I AM PILGRIM, read this.You wake. Confused. Disorientated.A noose is round your n... read more

Eliza Rose

Lucy Worsley

The captivating debut children's novel from popular television historian Lucy Worsley is an exciting and charming glimpse behind the scenes of the Tudor court. I would often wonder about my future husband. A knight? A duke? A stable boy?Of course the last was just a wicked fancy.Eliza Rose Camperdowne is young and headstrong, but she knows her duty well. As the only daughter of a noble family,... read more

The captivating debut children's novel from popular television historian Lucy Worsley is an exciting and charming glimpse behind the scenes of the Tudor court. I would often wonder about my future husband. A knight? A duke? A stable boy?Of course the last was just a wicked fancy.Eliza Rose Camperdowne is young and headstrong, but she knows her duty well. As the only daughter of a noble family,... read more

Waiting for Callback

Perdita Cargill, Honor Cargill

Geek Girl meets Fame meets New Girl in this brilliantly funny new series! When Elektra is discovered by an acting agent, she imagines Oscar glory can't be far away, but instead lurches from one cringe-worthy moment to the next! Just how many times can you be rejected for the part of 'Dead Girl Number Three' without losing hope? And who knew that actors were actually supposed to be multi-lingua... read more

Geek Girl meets Fame meets New Girl in this brilliantly funny new series! When Elektra is discovered by an acting agent, she imagines Oscar glory can't be far away, but instead lurches from one cringe-worthy moment to the next! Just how many times can you be rejected for the part of 'Dead Girl Number Three' without losing hope? And who knew that actors were actually supposed to be multi-lingua... read more

Guess Who?

Chris McGeorge

'Boils with claustrophobic intensity. Packed with gripping twists and turns, Guess Who? is an inventive, entertaining locked room mystery that kept me utterly hooked.' Adam Hamdy, author of Pendulum 'An ingenious twisty mystery in a totally unique setting.' Claire McGowan, author of Blood TideAt eleven years old, Morgan Sheppard solved the murder of his Maths teacher when everyone else believe... read more

'Boils with claustrophobic intensity. Packed with gripping twists and turns, Guess Who? is an inventive, entertaining locked room mystery that kept me utterly hooked.' Adam Hamdy, author of Pendulum 'An ingenious twisty mystery in a totally unique setting.' Claire McGowan, author of Blood TideAt eleven years old, Morgan Sheppard solved the murder of his Maths teacher when everyone else believe... read more

Tell the Truth, Shame the Devil

Melina Marchetta

"More than a crime story; it's jam-packed with family drama and heartbreak. Highly recommended for suspense and mystery fans." --Library JournalIn the wake of a devastating bombing, a father risks everything to find out who was responsible.When Bish Ortley, a recently suspended cop, receives word that a bus carrying his daughter has been bombed, he rushes to be by her side. A suspect has alrea... read more

"More than a crime story; it's jam-packed with family drama and heartbreak. Highly recommended for suspense and mystery fans." --Library JournalIn the wake of a devastating bombing, a father risks everything to find out who was responsible.When Bish Ortley, a recently suspended cop, receives word that a bus carrying his daughter has been bombed, he rushes to be by her side. A suspect has alrea... read more

Hannah has 8 reviews

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Communication
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Natalie Hanson

Hannah was great to work with and delivered everything on time. I appreciated her thoughtful notes on my book and I agreed with all the places she pointed out the need to tighten the story up. Her insights were helpful and got my mind working on the next draft!

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, March 2018


Laura Wilkinson

Hannah provided a thoughtful, thorough and perceptive report - exactly as you might expect from a seasoned professionalism. Great job. Thank you.

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, September 2017


Jo Ortega

Although not always what I wanted to hear, Hannah's feedback has been spot on. Only wish that I had sought her help before sending my ms to so many agents.

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, September 2017


George Jankovic

Hannah is great! She noticed some things that will really help make my book better. And she explained them in detail.

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, August 2017


Karren Hall

I felt like I had the rug pulled out from underneath me. I had my manuscript edited by 2 other professionals who liked the book and I took the feedback to heart and strengthened the book. It was read by several beta readers, some even asked for the sequel! Hannah Shepherd told me I would be better off scraping the MS and starting over. Who says that? Would I recommend her as an editor. ...

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, May 2017

Hannah Sheppard

Karren,
I'm so sorry you feel this way - I wish you'd taken me up on the offer to discuss the report and any queries you had so that I could have reassured you.
The suggestion that you start a completely new draft is writing advice I give regularly when there are stylistic and plotting issues to address because it can be more freeing and help you to come at your story with fresh eyes - it was supposed to be a helpful tactic and I'm sorry it left you feeling so bruised - as I said in the report I do think, with the work I outlined, that there's a lot of potential in your work and the concept is strong and I hope you continue to work on the idea.
Best,
Hannah

Reply from Hannah Sheppard

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