Lauren Hughes

Lauren Hughes - Editor

Atlanta, GA, USA

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

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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 (over 8 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 (6 selected works)

The Circus Train

Parikh, Amita

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 43 reviews

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

Anna Malecki
Lauren was super helpful and went above and beyond what we originally discussed her doing to make sure she helped me with my query materials.

Anna Malecki, September 2022


Anna Minkinow
Lauren was so wonderful to work with. She is smart, knowledgable about the publishing industry, friendly, prompt, fun to work with, and delivers fantastic work product! I cannot wait to collaborate with her again and would highly recommend her to writers!

Anna Minkinow, September 2022


Siobhan McKeown
I got a lot out of working with Lauren on my query package. She was able to look at my book from a different perspective which I was unable to do myself. The revisions she put together were really tight and I felt captured the essence of the book. She delivered on time and was communicative throughout. I especially valued the call that we had to go through the query package. She was able to tal...
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Siobhan McKeown, August 2022


Cynthia Harris
Thank you, Lauren for helping me feel good about my own writing and helping me think about my next steps! Every bit of advice you gave me was honest and fair! One of the things I noted from the start was how you embraced my heroine/protagonist by name and how you treated my draft has HER story. That meant the world to me and made this first-time author feel like I had created a character and a ...
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Cynthia Harris, July 2022


Grace Elliott
Lauren transformed the way I thought about my novel! I so appreciate her care and thought with my book, and her thorough, quick responses!

Grace Elliott, May 2022

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