Kelly Schaub

Kelly Schaub – Editor

I invest my experience in editing your book and show you how to write tighter while retaining your voice. It’s still your story—only better!


*****************NOW BOOKING JANUARY 2024 **********************

I edit fiction novels and short stories in adult, YA, and middle grade categories only.

I do not edit children's picture books, poetry, memoir or other nonfiction.


A former zookeeper turned author and freelance editor, I have published four short stories and two novels (as Kelly McCrady), so I too have felt the sting of an editor's red pen. This helps me empathize with your journey as a writer.

I focus on developmental *fiction* editing as well as stylistic edits needed to bring a writer's vision to the attention of agents and publishers. I have shepherded more than 190 novels and short stories to publication as a freelance editor plus 32 titles as a staff line editor for The Wild Rose Press.

I know what to look for in a sagging middle, where a story goes off the rails before the end, and even how to root out where an author inadvertently deflates the tension. Freelance editing allows me to help writers fix problem areas and strengthen their craft techniques.

Here's what I do for every client, whether we do a critique or an edit:

--Analyze plot, character, setting, and writing technique

--Give positive and constructive feedback

My job is to tighten sentences to eliminate junk words, distancing, passive voice, and wordiness. I'll point out areas where the author must fix the following common errors, and show you how to do it:


--white wall syndrome

--talking heads

--body parts moving on their own


--and so much more!

Many of my authors have sold their work to traditional and small press publishers alongside many pioneering self-publishing authors. Let me help your book become part of my brag list!

We're limited to listing 8 genres of interest, but I welcome and have edited manuscripts in the following genres:


















I am usually booked three months in advance, so plan accordingly!

Action & Adventure Contemporary Romance Dystopian Fantasy Middle Grade Fantasy Paranormal Romance Time Travel Romance Young Adult Fantasy
English (US)

Work experience

The Wild Rose Press

Sep, 2007 — Apr, 2012 (over 4 years)

Editor for both the Faery Rose (paranormal romance) and Yellow Rose (contemporary western) lines. Duties included review of submissions, contracting authors with approval from Senior editor, project management from contract to publication, developmental and copy edits for contracted titles, liaison between author and publisher.


May, 2006 — Present

I provided freelance editing services that range from query and synopsis writing or review to manuscript critiques to line edits and heavy developmental edits. I have worked with English Second Language authors from around the globe as well as hundreds of home-grown aspiring authors with an eye on either traditional publishing or self-publishing. While a large portion of my experience lies in the romance genre, I will happily edit any genre of fiction and reading levels from middle grade to adult.


Emma is just 13 years old in 1933 when she gives birth to her father's baby. Unable to care for the child, she abandons tiny Maddie and returns to her isolated home on a North Carolina mountain, where she must fend off her father's drunken advances while tryin... read more
Every January, Skye Clancy’s mother slips into despair on the anniversary of a devastating storm that claimed her sister. But no one may talk about it, or any of the other strange deaths that haunt the family. This January, days before Skye’s 14th birthday, a ... read more
Paul Gillebaard's brilliant debut novel of the HOAX TRILOGY is a magnificent tale of seemingly doing the impossible, sending an American back to the claims the moon landings never happened and that they have proof. Losing worldwide prestige ... read more
A junction erupts between the worlds.The Gold Rush trickles to a fool’s quest and a string of stagecoach heists. In 1888, Earl Blacke decides to make a new start and become a better man. He escapes into the mountains, heading north. In the wilds of Oregon, a r... read more
Silver Lake

Kathryn K.

Rain Anderson can't decide which is more unsettling--encountering the ghost of her missing friend, or reuniting with the man whose love she foolishly rejected. But one thing is certain: the past has come back to haunt her, quite literally.Five years ago, Rain'... read more

Karla B.

Try the first in the Epitaph series free!"Crazy Amy" Benson has an unusual talent for hearing epitaphs as the dead pass on. The men she dates who aren't unnerved by her ability are usually scared off by Amy's brothers. When reporter Kevin McCormick shows up to... read more
Five-year-old sisters Boo and Lindy want a daddy -- and anything goes in their quest, including a secret spell known only to the twins. On a lonely country road, Chad Applegate appears out of nowhere to help the girls and their mother rescue an injured dog. Ro... read more
Wealthy New York socialite Grace Preston uses men for amusement, holding her heart inside an ice fortress for protection. Spurned by a sociopathic male model, Grace picks up a new man with all the right moves; smooth as bourbon, Cole slides under her wall and ... read more
Spooky events persist inside the newly discovered library of spelled books. What magical mischief is afoot?Lizzie receives an offer she can't refuse—an internship at the Lost Library, home to hundreds of magical books. And to make the deal even sweeter, her pr... read more
Contemporary Gothic RomanceFor the past twenty-seven years, Kayla Grayson’s mother has refused to discuss Kayla’s absent father or explain why the two of them have been alone in the world without relatives. A mysterious email sends Kayla to a Maryland beach to... read more
LaylaAfter three years caring for her dying mother, Layla Callaway learns she was adopted under unusual circumstances. Following a cryptic message to seek her birth family in Oregon, Layla uproots her life to find out the truth about her past. And herself.Quin... read more
"I envy your journey with him." Jason Sterling never meant to put his life or anyone else's in danger. The Genier law firm's excellent reputation assures him all is well when he accepts the unusual job offer with the Genier's personal friend and client. The my... read more
I would recommend “Ghosts in the Yew” to everyone who likes an elaborate Fantasy story full of political intrigue with a splash of magic. Especially if you read “The Pillars of the Earth” and enjoyed it, this will be a great read for you!" – Draumr Kopa Fantas... read more

Jill K.

The question that 23-year old Amalia Hastings wants the answer to is: What happens to men when they move to Manhattan? Life in the city gives Amalia a ride she is not expecting. As she tries to find her way on the little island that never sleeps, she discovers... read more
The Fourth Wall

Elizabeth M.

When Marin was little and monsters chased her through nightmares, she learned to weave her own dreams. Her mother called the lucid dreaming a gift, and when an accident takes her mother and leaves her baby brother an empty shell, Marin uses this gift to spin a... read more

Kelly has 70 reviews





Robyn J.

Robyn J.

Sep, 2023

A 10 for 10 editorial and I am so glad to have come across her. She has boosted my understanding of my WIP, and I would be happy to work with her again.
Herb H.

Herb H.

Sep, 2023

Kelly as always has worked her magic. She took a mess of 4 books making 2 great books. Thank you Kelly!!!
Stephanie D.

Stephanie D.

Jul, 2023

As always, Kelly was incredible to work with! Booking her in yet again!
Neil N.

Neil N.

Jun, 2023

I am grateful to Ms. S. for her professionalism, clarity in her explanations, and particularly patience in dealing with a total noob. She's my go-to editor.
Marmelibee ..

Marmelibee ..

May, 2023

I was absolutely thrilled with the invaluable feedback provided by the Kelly! Her exceptional professionalism was evident throughout the process, and she offered insightful critiques that greatly enhanced my manuscript. This particular piece of work holds immense personal significance for me, as it has been a labor of love since my early adolescence. The editor's keen attention to preserving bo...
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