Hugh Barker

Hugh Barker - Editor

London, UK

I'm a writer, editor and publisher with decades of experience. I'm keen to advise on or edit commercial fiction, non-fiction or memoir.

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Overview

I'm an editor and writer with many years experience in a wide variety of publishing roles and houses including Constable & Robinson, Michael O'Mara and (as author) Faber, Bloomsbury, Ebury and Atlantic - I have worked on everything from cosy crime to comic novels, and non-fiction including art, history, science philosophy and most other areas. I also have experience in the sales departments of publishers, so understand their mindset, and also have experience as an author and ghostwriter, having written about fifteen books myself (under my own name and pseudonyms).
Languages
English (UK)
English (US)
Non-Fiction
Biographies & Memoirs
Business & Management
Math & Science
Philosophy
Political Science & Current Affairs
Fiction
Holiday
Humor & Comedy
Mystery & Crime

Work experience

Freelance writing, book creation and editing

Self-employed
April, 2016 – Present (over 4 years)

I write books for several major publishers including Penguin and Hachette. I also work regularly as a freelancer for publishers around the UK and the US, as well as taking on a wide variety of jobs via Reedsy, which I find endlessly enjoyable and fascinating.

Publishing Director

Michael O'Mara
April, 2014 – August, 2016 (over 2 years)

Commissioning Editor

Constable & Robinson
January, 2004 – April, 2014 (about 10 years)

I had a variety of roles, starting in the sales department, then commissioning and acquiring hundreds of books and ending up as a commissioning editor

Sales Manager

Quarto
January, 2001 – January, 2004 (about 3 years)

My first job in publishing, although I previously worked as a proof-reader and in bookshops for several years.

Portfolio (13 selected works)

Hedge Britannia: A Curious History of a British Obsession

Hugh Barker

This is the story of how Britishhedgerows contribute to our national identity and our wildlife. Overthe centuries we have proved ourselves to be a nation of hedge growers,marking boundaries or trimming them into fantastical creations. Fromformal garden features to emphatically rustic barriers, Hugh exploresour hedges in all their diversity.Hedge Britannia offers a wittyinsight into the history... read more

This is the story of how Britishhedgerows contribute to our national identity and our wildlife. Overthe centuries we have proved ourselves to be a nation of hedge growers,marking boundaries or trimming them into fantastical creations. Fromformal garden features to emphatically rustic barriers, Hugh exploresour hedges in all their diversity.Hedge Britannia offers a wittyinsight into the history... read more

Faking It: The Quest for Authenticity in Popular Music

Hugh Barker, Yuval Taylor

Musicians strive to “keep it real”; listeners condemn “fakes”; ... but does great music really need to be authentic? Did Elvis sing from the heart, or was he just acting? Were the Sex Pistols more real than disco? Why do so many musicians base their approach on being authentic, and why do music buffs fall for it every time? By investigating this obsession in the last century through the storie... read more

Musicians strive to “keep it real”; listeners condemn “fakes”; ... but does great music really need to be authentic? Did Elvis sing from the heart, or was he just acting? Were the Sex Pistols more real than disco? Why do so many musicians base their approach on being authentic, and why do music buffs fall for it every time? By investigating this obsession in the last century through the storie... read more

This Book Will Send You to Sleep

Professor K. McCoy, Dr Hardwick

A Brief Guide to Business Classics: From The Art of War to The Wisdom of Failure

James M. Russell

The world of business books is a curious place where one can find everyone from great businesspeople like Warren Buffett, Steve Jobs and Elon Musk, to the most spectacular business failures such as Enron and the sub-prime business market. There are geniuses, hard workers, academics and entrepreneurs as well a few charlatans and hucksters. There's even room for Donald Trump., The 70 titles cove... read more

The world of business books is a curious place where one can find everyone from great businesspeople like Warren Buffett, Steve Jobs and Elon Musk, to the most spectacular business failures such as Enron and the sub-prime business market. There are geniuses, hard workers, academics and entrepreneurs as well a few charlatans and hucksters. There's even room for Donald Trump., The 70 titles cove... read more

Weird Things Customers Say in Bookshops

Jen Campbell

'Can books conduct electricity?''My children are just climbing your bookshelves: that's ok... isn't it?' A John Cleese Twitter question ['What is your pet peeve?'], first sparked the "Weird Things Customers Say in Bookshops" blog, which grew over three years into one bookseller's collection of ridiculous conversations on the shop floor. From 'Did Beatrix Potter ever write a book about dinosaur... read more

'Can books conduct electricity?''My children are just climbing your bookshelves: that's ok... isn't it?' A John Cleese Twitter question ['What is your pet peeve?'], first sparked the "Weird Things Customers Say in Bookshops" blog, which grew over three years into one bookseller's collection of ridiculous conversations on the shop floor. From 'Did Beatrix Potter ever write a book about dinosaur... read more

We're Going on a Bar Hunt: A Parody

Emlyn Rees, Josie Lloyd

We're going on a bar hunt.We're going to find a cool one.The babysitter's booked.We're not old!Bestselling authors Emlyn Rees and Josie Lloyd also happen to be parents, so they understand the complications of organising a rare night out. In this parody of the famous children's book, two parents set off for a night on the tiles, and encounter a series of watering holes and bars before an alarmi... read more

We're going on a bar hunt.We're going to find a cool one.The babysitter's booked.We're not old!Bestselling authors Emlyn Rees and Josie Lloyd also happen to be parents, so they understand the complications of organising a rare night out. In this parody of the famous children's book, two parents set off for a night on the tiles, and encounter a series of watering holes and bars before an alarmi... read more

You've Done What, My Lord?: Hilarious tales from a country estate

Rory Clark

You've Done What, My Lord? Rumshott is one of the finest landed estates in England. However, when James Aden takes up the position of Deputy Agent he does not realise the full extent of what the job entails. He finds himself spending his days negotiating with royalty, farmers, and even wildlife, as well as the imperious Lady Leghorn. Full description

You've Done What, My Lord? Rumshott is one of the finest landed estates in England. However, when James Aden takes up the position of Deputy Agent he does not realise the full extent of what the job entails. He finds himself spending his days negotiating with royalty, farmers, and even wildlife, as well as the imperious Lady Leghorn. Full description

The Bookshop That Floated Away

Sarah Henshaw

Bookshop That Floated Away

Bookshop That Floated Away

Create Your Own Universe

Greg McLeod, Myles McLeod

If you have ever wanted to create a comic, graphic novel, animation, film, television series, or even a book, then Create Your Own Universe is here to help you get started. A fun, imaginative and interactive guide to creating your own characters and worlds, this is a great starting point for producing your own stories.Be inspired and collect information on all your characters, locations and ba... read more

If you have ever wanted to create a comic, graphic novel, animation, film, television series, or even a book, then Create Your Own Universe is here to help you get started. A fun, imaginative and interactive guide to creating your own characters and worlds, this is a great starting point for producing your own stories.Be inspired and collect information on all your characters, locations and ba... read more

Hugh has 54 reviews

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

Efrona Mor
Hugh did an incredible edit for me, far and beyond what I expected. The project was an on-line course of substantial size (27,000-word count) and meant a great deal to me. His professionalism, creative side, great eye for continuity, patience, and side comments really pulled my work together for a professional course to be proud of. Thank you, Hugh, and I will be using you again in my future.

Efrona Mor, September 2020


Ann Potter
This has been a wonderful experience especially as I got your name online with no references. Turned out perfect for me and I will send more material to you.

Ann Potter, September 2020


Estelle Van de Velde
Hugh was excellent throughout our collaboration. I'm very happy that my book went through his hands. I highly recommend working with him :)

Estelle Van de Velde, September 2020


Ingrid Asturias
I highly recommend Hugh Barker. He found many errors in my manuscript and suggested useful changes that allowed my work to flow better. He also confronted me with some of the facts that I wrote down for verification. I will love working with him in the future.

Ingrid Asturias, September 2020


Volcania .
Hugh was prompt and very precise in his corrections. I definitively go my money's wort.

Volcania ., September 2020

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