Lauren Hughes

Lauren Hughes - Editor

Atlanta, GA, USA

Editor with Big 5 and international experience currently working with aspiring writers from Atlanta, Georgia.

Request a quote
Verified identity

Overview

A Big 5 vetted and tested editor who does not like speaking in the third person about herself.

After several years of working in New York City publishing, I left the city for a change of scenery and to pursue my own writing. I moved to London where I received a MA in Creative and Life Writing from Goldsmiths. It was there I also began working as a full-time freelance developmental editor.

For the past six years I've had the pleasure of partnering with writers who seek to elevate their work to the level required by traditional publishing. I now live in Atlanta, Georgia, where I am originally from (an important bit of personal trivia, I think, as I find that my Southern verve and congeniality makes me a gentle, but firm critic with a compassionate desk-side manner). I work with writers seeking publication in both the US and the UK and would be delighted to hear from you no matter which side of the pond you write from (all others welcome, too, though I am not the best editor for work that has been translated and may still benefit from a developmental editor fluent in the manuscript's native language).

In addition to my accomplishments in publishing, I am also an experienced copywriter and have written for and about luxury fashion, lifestyle, and entertainment brands ranging from MTV Networks to Keds shoes. I say this because I want you to know that I know how tough it is to craft the perfect sentence full of wit, feeling, and meaning. I love working with clients to help them achieve just the right pitch and tone in their own projects. My own journey as a novelist means that I also know what it feels like to send your work out into the world to be read and critiqued by others. I pride myself on my active listening and thorough communication. In our work together I endeavor, above all, to hear what you aim to achieve through your writing and translate it into actionable editorial steps informed by my understanding of the marketplace.

My experience in New York publishing means that I'm equipped to handle just about anything you want to throw at me and at breakneck speeds, too. I've worked with phenomenally talented editors and writers (and I'm not the only one who thinks so - they've won incredible literary awards and recognitions ranging from NYT Notable Books to Pulitzer Prizes), so I've learned from the best of the best when it comes to crafting the perfect story. I'm most interested in literary fiction and upmarket women's fiction. I love bold (and often 'unlikeable') female protagonists, character-driven plots, and families-with-secrets novels.

I decided to begin freelancing full-time because I wanted to focus more on doing what I'm best at and love the most - telling good stories and helping writers, one-to-one, develop and strengthen their own unique voices. I'd love to do the same with you, and look forward to hearing all about the project you think would be a great fit for us to work on together!
Languages
English (UK)
English (US)
Fiction
Historical Fiction
Literary Fiction
Short Story
Women's Fiction

Certifications

  • B.A. in Communication Studies, University of Georgia
  • M.A. in Creative and Life Writing, Goldsmiths, University of London

Work experience

Editor

Self-employed
June, 2014 – Present (about 7 years)

Editor working primarily with novelists seeking traditional publication who wish to further develop and strengthen their work for maximum possible success in the marketplace. Services include editorial assessment, full developmental edit, query package review, and coaching. Writers I have worked with have gone on to receive offers of representation from major agencies in the both the US and UK, as well as publish via the Big 5.

Editorial Assistant

Scribner
August, 2013 – May, 2014 (9 months)

Assistant to several award-winning editors at Scribner (an imprint of Simon and Schuster), working primarily on literary fiction, narrative non-fiction, and upmarket fiction titles such as MOBILE LIBRARY by Betty Trask Prize winner David Whitehouse, ALL WE HAD by acclaimed sculptor Annie Weatherwax, THE HILLTOP by Bernstein Prize winner Assaf Gavron, BODY COUNTS by Lambda Literary Award finalist Sean Strub, and the NYT Notable Book DEMON CAMP by Jennifer Percy. Titles worked on in an ancillary capacity include NYT Bestseller and recipient of the Books for a Better Life Award CARRY ON, WARRIOR by Glennon Doyle Melton, NYT Bestseller and Pulitzer Prize recipient ALL THE LIGHT WE CANNOT SEE by Anthony Doerr, NYT Bestseller NORA WEBSTER by Colm Toibin, and NYT Bestseller THE FIRST BAD MAN by Miranda July.

Editorial Assistant

Weinstein Books
February, 2013 – August, 2013 (6 months)

Sole support editorial staff to Editorial Director at Weinstein Books (a joint venture between The Weinstein Company and Perseus Books Group), working primarily on platform-driven fiction and non-fiction titles such as THE BLONDE by NYT Bestselling Author Anna Godbersen, KATE: THE FUTURE QUEEN by the Mail on Sunday's Royal Correspondent Katie Nicholl, and OBSESSED by NYT Bestselling Author and msnbc "Morning Joe" co-host Mika Brzezinski.

Portfolio (5 selected works)

All We Had: A Novel

Annie Weatherwax

The stunning debut novel from sculptor and painter Annie Weatherwax, a wry and sharply observed portrait of a gritty mother and daughter, living on the edge of poverty, who find an unlikely home amid the quirky residents of small town America.For thirteen-year-old Ruthie Carmichael and her mother, Rita, life has never been stable. The only sure thing is their love for each other. Though Rita w... read more

The stunning debut novel from sculptor and painter Annie Weatherwax, a wry and sharply observed portrait of a gritty mother and daughter, living on the edge of poverty, who find an unlikely home amid the quirky residents of small town America.For thirteen-year-old Ruthie Carmichael and her mother, Rita, life has never been stable. The only sure thing is their love for each other. Though Rita w... read more

Mobile Library: A Novel

David Whitehouse

From the award-winning novelist David Whitehouse, hailed by The New York Times as “a writer to watch,” a tragicomic adventure about a troubled adolescent boy who escapes his small town in a stolen library-on-wheels.“An archivist of his mother,” Bobby Nusku spends his nights meticulously cataloging her hair, clothing, and other traces of the life she left behind. By day, Bobby and his best frie... read more

From the award-winning novelist David Whitehouse, hailed by The New York Times as “a writer to watch,” a tragicomic adventure about a troubled adolescent boy who escapes his small town in a stolen library-on-wheels.“An archivist of his mother,” Bobby Nusku spends his nights meticulously cataloging her hair, clothing, and other traces of the life she left behind. By day, Bobby and his best frie... read more

The Hilltop: A Novel

Assaf Gavron

Hailed as “The Great Israeli Novel” (Time Out Tel Aviv) and winner of the prestigious Bernstein Prize, The Hilltop is a monumental and daring work about life in a West Bank settlement from one of Israel’s most acclaimed young novelists.On a rocky, beautiful hilltop stands Ma’aleh Hermesh C, a fledgling community flying under the radar. According to the government it doesn’t exist; according to... read more

Hailed as “The Great Israeli Novel” (Time Out Tel Aviv) and winner of the prestigious Bernstein Prize, The Hilltop is a monumental and daring work about life in a West Bank settlement from one of Israel’s most acclaimed young novelists.On a rocky, beautiful hilltop stands Ma’aleh Hermesh C, a fledgling community flying under the radar. According to the government it doesn’t exist; according to... read more

Demon Camp: The Strange and Terrible Saga of a Soldier’s Return from War

Jennifer Percy

A “chilling” (O, The Oprah Magazine), “darkly brilliant” (Bookforum) account of “the effects of war on the psyches of the soldiers who fight” (Esquire).In 2005 a Chinook helicopter carrying sixteen Special Ops soldiers crashed during a rescue mission in Afghanistan, killing everyone on board. In that instant, machine gunner Caleb Daniels lost his best friend, Kip, and seven members of his unit... read more

A “chilling” (O, The Oprah Magazine), “darkly brilliant” (Bookforum) account of “the effects of war on the psyches of the soldiers who fight” (Esquire).In 2005 a Chinook helicopter carrying sixteen Special Ops soldiers crashed during a rescue mission in Afghanistan, killing everyone on board. In that instant, machine gunner Caleb Daniels lost his best friend, Kip, and seven members of his unit... read more

Body Counts: A Memoir of Politics, Sex, AIDS, and Survival

Sean Strub

Sean Strub, founder of the groundbreaking POZ magazine, producer of the hit play “The Night Larry Kramer Kissed Me,” and the first openly HIV-positive candidate for US Congress, charts his remarkable life—a story of politics and AIDS and a powerful testament to loss, hope, and survival. Sean Strub, founder of the groundbreaking POZ magazine, producer of the hit play The Night Larry Kramer Kiss... read more

Sean Strub, founder of the groundbreaking POZ magazine, producer of the hit play “The Night Larry Kramer Kissed Me,” and the first openly HIV-positive candidate for US Congress, charts his remarkable life—a story of politics and AIDS and a powerful testament to loss, hope, and survival. Sean Strub, founder of the groundbreaking POZ magazine, producer of the hit play The Night Larry Kramer Kiss... read more

Lauren has 36 reviews

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

Fiza McLynn
Lauren is incredible. From our first communication, I realised how fortunate I was to find her. So, when she agreed to work with me I was overjoyed! She immediately understood what help my book needed and how best to express those needs to me. Her knowledge, insight and experience is impressive and sometimes I think she must be reading my mind! Needless to say, her approach is professional - sh...
Read more

Fiza McLynn, April 2021


Judy McManus
Lauren and I worked wonderfully together. She understood my vision and gave recommendations that enhanced my work to make it the best it could be. Thanks, Lauren! We will collaborate again soon! Judy M.

Judy McManus, March 2021


Vivek Santhosh
Working with Lauren on my short story was a wonderful experience. From her first response to my request, she was professional and insightful. The questions she raised in her feedback letter and the suggestions she provided for improvement are precise and thoughtful. When incorporated, they will not only do complete justice but also greatly enhance the soul of the work. I highly recommend Lauren...
Read more

Vivek Santhosh, March 2021


laura schooling
Lauren has a unique talent of being exceptionally warm as well as tactically critical. From the first email she was detailed, specific, and enthusiastic. She stuck to deadlines, replied promptly, and, in the end, provided me with actionable feedback. Her formal training, apparent love of the work, and benevolent demeanor make her an ideal editor. I recommend her without reserve and would glad...
Read more

laura schooling, January 2021


Jai Franklin Sarki
Lauren has been an absolute joy to work with, she is articulate, communicative and diligent in her work. I would work with her over and over again, and highly recommend!

Jai Franklin Sarki, January 2021

Read more reviews

Explore the Reedsy Community

Reedsy is a community of top publishing professionals. Join Reedsy today to browse 1000+ profiles.

Simon Burke

Fiction editor with 20+years experience in UK publishing and bookselling. Particular interest in commercial literary and crime/thrillers.

Whitstable, United Kingdom

Kirsten Bakis

I'll help bring your novel to life. Award-winning novelist with 25 years experience as a writing coach, developmental editor, and teacher.

New York, NY, USA

To view 1,000+ more profiles, Join Reedsy