Jennifer Donovan

Jennifer Donovan – Editor

Specializing in adult fiction, especially mysteries, historicals, and fantasies. I can't wait to share actionable advice for your work!


I'm an editor with 10 years of experience in the publishing industry with particular experience working on mystery, historical, and fantasy books. I'm also an avid reader of romance and feel I could help in that category as well!

I specialize in developmental editing on pacing, character development, plotting, and world building, as well as line editing. I can also help with editorial assessments for more overview guidance rather than getting into the nitty gritty if you're looking for feedback on an early draft.

I typically give feedback in the form of editorial letters with specific examples relating to my notes and/or an annotated Word document. I love to work collaboratively and am happy to workshop ideas and walk you through your concerns and my suggestions after my initial read.

I look forward to working together!

Action & Adventure Cozy Mysteries Espionage Fantasy Historical Mysteries Magical Realism Romantic Comedy
English (US)

Work experience

Penguin Random House

Mar, 2019 — Present

EDITOR, Audio - March 2019-April 2022

• Manages audio publications of an assigned list of Penguin imprints
• Considers and acquires submissions from agents and out-of-house publishers
• Identifies new opportunities for non-traditional audio titles (e.g. journals, cookbooks, illus. books), backlist, audio first, and audio original publications
• Supervises assistant editor on their assigned list of imprints

St. Martin's Press, Macmillan

Jul, 2016 — Mar, 2019 (over 2 years)

• Provided developmental editing support for fiction titles
• Project managed fiction and nonfiction titles, including 4 New York Times Best Sellers
• Wrote book copy for retailer websites and book jackets


Mar, 2016 — Jul, 2019 (over 3 years)

• Line-edited and developmentally edited mystery books for a NYC-based publisher


The Extinction Agenda

Laurence, Michael

Jennifer has 6 reviews





Janet B.

Janet B.

Feb, 2024

Jennifer was absolutely wonderful to work with. She met our deadline and the feedback she gave me was so helpful. Her comments and suggestions were helpful, and I truly felt I had learned much from her. She never told me to "change" anything in my MS, but always suggested a better way that clarified what I had been trying to get across. if there is a Book #3 for me, Jennifer Donovan will be my ...
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Mitch G.

Mitch G.

Jan, 2024

Wow, I couldn't possibly ask for better, or more thorough, insight into my book. If we compare Jennifer's methods to my previous editor, the latter was better about complaining than offering solutions. Jennifer's help was much more pointed and therefore more valuable. I will be taking her suggestion to heart about putting the mystery into the mystery -- in the way readers expect. Again, let me...
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Chelsea L.

Chelsea L.

Jun, 2023

Jennifer did an excellent job delving into my manuscript and understanding exactly what I was hoping to accomplish. She gave wonderful development edits that helped me tighten the storyline and character's archs. She gave great insight into character development and pointed out specific spots where a character was acting outside of their scope or needing more set-up. Additionally, she also prov...
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DJ (Don) M.

DJ (Don) M.

Apr, 2023

Jennifer was absolutely brilliant in all aspects of her editing, including the content, structure and timing . It was incredibly thorough, raising points missed by previous mentors, which is particularly important in a thriller to make sure that the plot elements add up properly, as well as feedback about characters and relationships. I liked that as well as comments in the text, she provided ...
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Holly R.

Holly R.

Dec, 2022

She did more than what I asked for! Jennifer did a fantastic job with my editorial assessment. She even went line by line into ways to consider improving the novel. Definitely made the right choice.

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