Jonathan Starke

Jonathan Starke – Editor

I've spent 17 years editing debuts and bestsellers across genres, traditional and self-published. Agent/publisher queries. Caring, diligent.

Overview

I'm an award-winning author with 17 years of editing and publishing experience. I've evaluated hundreds of manuscripts of all genres from writers at different stages of their careers and helped authors develop successful submission packages for agents and publishers.


I love reading a new manuscript and knowing my edits will bring the writer closer to their publishing goals while also illustrating ways they can develop their craft.


My clients have signed with top-tier agents and publishers, like HarperCollins and Penguin, and become bestsellers, such as the award-winning novel The Boat Runner, or earned multiple number-one spots on the Amazon charts, like the memoir Nocturnal Admissions: Behind the Scenes at Legendary Nightclubs.


What to expect working with me:

• An initial message exchange to build rapport and discuss your project and goals

• Feel free to ask questions throughout the entire process; I'm quick to respond

• I clean, tighten, and proofread your manuscript offering feedback in the margins

• Or edit and bolster your query and synopsis for agents and publishers

• All edits are completed using Chicago Manual of Style and Merriam-Webster

• I deliver two copies of the work, one with the edits showing, the other clean

• And off you go with your polished manuscript or submissions materials!


Testimonials:

• "Hiring Jonathan was the best writing-related decision I ever made. He reads all my work before I send it out, helped me sell my first novel, place dozens of stories in top-tier journals, and guided my writing to new depths." -- Dr. Devin Murphy, bestselling author of The Boat Runner

• "Jonathan exceeded all my expectations: his edits were crisp, insightful, and exact." -- Erin Popelka, founder of Must Read Fiction

• "He helped raise my novel to a prizewinner with his skilled line and copyediting abilities." -- D. E. Lee, author of the prizewinning The Sky After Rain


​A little more about me:

I'm a former bodybuilder and boxer who loves making handcrafted soap, traveling, thrifting, recycling, and helping others

My writing has appeared in dozens of top literary journals

My novel, You've Got Something Coming, won the Black Heron Press Award for Social Fiction

Services
Fiction
Action & Adventure Dystopian Historical Fiction Literary Fiction Mystery & Crime Psychological Thriller Romance
Non-Fiction
Biographies & Memoirs
Languages
English (US)
Awards
  • Black Heron Press Award for Social Fiction
Certifications
  • MFA in Creative Writing - Fiction
  • MFA in Creative Writing - Nonfiction

Work experience

Self-employed

Jan, 2006 — Present

For 17 years I've offered professional editorial services including critiques, copy edits, line edits, and helped authors query agents and publishers. I happily work in a range of genres, though I specialize in literary, thriller, mystery, memoir, and translations; for manuscripts: novels, nonfiction books, and essay and story collections. I've also enjoyed coaching writers to reach the full breadth of their talents through encouraging emails, phone calls, notes, and comments.

Palooka Magazine and Palooka Press

Jan, 2010 — Present

I founded this literary magazine and press 13 years ago to create a space for writers and artists to have a truly fair shot at publication and the chance to be seen, read, and recognized—no connections, no solicitations, only blind reading. Where the quality of work is all that matters. Through Palooka and Palooka Press I've evaluated over 12,000 manuscripts, from fiction to nonfiction to poetry to drama to graphic narratives.

Portfolio

Copy Editing
Copy Editing
Copy Editing
Copy Editing Editorial Assessment Query Letter Review
Copy Editing
Copy Editing
Developmental Editing Copy Editing Editorial Assessment Proofreading Query Letter Review
Copy Editing Query Letter Review
Copy Editing Proofreading Query Letter Review
The Penny Thief

Paul, Christophe

Copy Editing
Copy Editing
Copy Editing
Copy Editing
Copy Editing
Copy Editing
Copy Editing
Developmental Editing Copy Editing Editorial Assessment Proofreading Query Letter Review
Mother of Invention

Wolfson Widger, Caeli

Copy Editing Query Letter Review
Copy Editing
Developmental Editing Copy Editing Editorial Assessment Proofreading Query Letter Review
Copy Editing

Jonathan has 48 reviews

Professionalism

Quality

Value

Responsiveness

John O.

John O.

May, 2024

I would like to thank Jonathon for taking on this project as he had other matters he was engaged in. His editing was of the utmost professional quality with great insight on how to structure the novel to make it easier and more enjoyable to read. More importantly it has taught me how to become a better writer. His corrections and suggestions were spot on and once again has provided me with bett...
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Jonathan S.
Thanks so much, John! I enjoyed reading your novel and look forward to helping you with your next project. :)
Maggie G.

Maggie G.

Apr, 2024

Johnathan was a tremendous help to me and my manuscript, offering insightful edits and wonderful proofreading throughout the entire course of work. He was very responsive and helpful whenever I had questions. I recommend him to anyone looking for a proofreader and Reedsy for the smooth process. Thank you!
Jonathan S.
Thanks so much, Maggie! I enjoyed reading/editing your wonderful novel and look forward to its success, as well as working together again on your next one!
Jane T.

Jane T.

Mar, 2024

Jonathan made my book better. I had made a lot of errors that he corrected. He gave me recommendations to fill plot holes and mend areas that weren't plausible. The ending of my book is more exciting as a result of Jonathan's suggestion. As I reviewed his edits, I felt like he was sitting next to me while reading his comments. I appreciated his words of encouragement. Jonathan offered updates t...
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Jonathan S.
Thanks for your kind words, Jane! I enjoyed working with you on your novel, reading your revisions, and will look forward to your next one. :)
Craig P.

Craig P.

Jan, 2024

Hiring and working with Jonathan has been a great experience, and I couldn’t recommend him enough as an editor. From Jonathan's first sample edit, I knew he would be a great fit for my manuscript. His edits and expertise encompassed copy/line editing to help the flow of the manuscript and included extensive editorial comments and feedback to improve the overall structure and narrative. As a fir...
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Jonathan S.
Thanks so much, Craig! I appreciate your kind words and thoughtful review. I look forward to helping you on your next novel and the many thereafter. :)
Adam O.

Adam O.

Jan, 2024

The entire editorial process went smoothly, professionally, and done within the required timeframe. Jonathan's editorial changes, tutorial advice, and insightful comments greatly enhanced the quality and flow of my story. I cannot say enough about his editorial skill. I would definitely use him again!
Jonathan S.
Thanks so much, Adam! Looking forward to helping you with your next novel.

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