Lisa Edwards

Lisa Edwards - Editor

London, UK

Freelance editor with 23 years' experience in UK children's publishing. Published The Hunger Games, His Dark Materials, Horrible Histories.

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Overview

Reviews (8)
I am a freelance editor, writer, publisher and yoga teacher, having spent 23 years in the publishing industry, primarily in the children's books trade as a publishing director. As a freelance consultant I have advised major publishing houses on publishing strategy, brand management, digital publishing and licensing. As a freelance writer, I have written a number of journalistic pieces aimed at women on dating, solo travel, being childfree-by-choice and sobriety. I split my time between London and Goa and I have recently completed my first book, based on my blog.

During my career I have been lucky enough to publish: His Dark Materials; The Hunger Games; Horrible Histories; Stick Man (and other Julia Donaldson picture books); Jonny Duddle; the Tom Gates' series; The Beano, Disney; Captain Underpants and Klutz. More recently I led the revitalisation of the Templar imprint for its 40th anniversary.

Across my 23-year career, myself and my teams have won or been shortlisted for 25 prestigious awards including the British Book Awards, the Carnegie and Greenaway Medals, the Waterstones Prize, the Costa Book Award, the Blue Peter Book Awards, the Stanford's Travel Writing Awards, the Klaus Flugge Prize and the Roald Dahl Funny/Lollies Prize.

I pride myself on having an honest and detailed approach to authors' and illustrators' work as I find it has served me well over the 23 years I've been in the industry. You can expect my work on your text/concept to deliver an honest opinion, clear and concise ideas on how to improve it, and sound editorial skills to carry the text/concept through to a publishable state. I believe in a collaborative approach to all my work - the relationship between editor and author/illustrator should be symbiotic as we work together towards the end goal of achieving a great book.
Languages
English (UK)
Non-Fiction
Biographies & Memoirs
Children's - Non-fiction
Comics (non fiction)
Children's
Middle Grade
Picture Books
Fiction
Young Adult

Awards

  • English Association Award 2019 - I Say Ooh You Say Ahh by John Kane; Rhythm of the Rain by Grahame Baker Smith
  • Edward Stanford Travel Writing Award 2018 - Great Adventurers by Alastair Humphreys
  • Klaus Flugge Illustration Prize 2019 (highly commended) – The Real Boat by Victoria Semykina
  • British Book Awards Children's Publisher of the Year 2013 (Scholastic UK)
  • Blue Peter Book Award 2013 - Horrible Science House of Horrors by Nick Arnold; Tom Gates: Genius Ideas (Mostly) by Liz Pichon
  • Waterstones Children's Book Prize 2012: The Brilliant World of Tom Gates by Liz Pichon
  • Costa Children's Book Award 2012: Blood Red Road by Moira Young
  • Bookseller Rising Star 2012

Work experience

Executive Publisher

Bonnier Books UK (Templar imprint)
November, 2015 – March, 2019 (over 3 years)

I led a team of editors, designers and a paper engineer for the Templar Books and Big Picture Press imprints, producing around 80 titles per year in picture books, non fiction, classics, fiction, pre-school and gift.

Best known for its groundbreaking Ology series, Amazing Baby books and award-winning picture books, Templar is a design- and illustration-led imprint that prides itself on innovation. Paper-engineering is at the heart of Templar's DNA as well as finding new ways to deliver stories and information to young readers.

Formed in 2013, Big Picture Press is best known for the Mizielinskis' MAPS and Katie Scott's Animalium. It is a carefully curated 'boutique' imprint, which is focused on visually inspiring non fiction for readers of all ages. See less

Publishing Consultant

Self-employed
April, 2015 – October, 2015 (6 months)

Offering consultancy on list planning and development, imprint strategy, brand management and new product initiatives:

Client: Hachette Children's Group:
Imprints:
Hodder Children's Books
Orchard Books
Orion Children's Books
Little Brown Books for Young Readers
Quercus
Franklin Watts
Wayland
Enid Blyton Estate

Course leader

Self-employed
April, 2015 – October, 2015 (6 months)

Created and led a new course for editors on Trade Commissioning and List Management.

Publisher - Adult Books

Carlton Books
April, 2013 – March, 2015 (almost 2 years)

I headed up editorial for all the Carlton adult imprints: Carlton Books, Goodman, Goodman Fiell, Andre Deutsch and Prion. As official London Olympics 2012 publishers, and shortlisted for Independent Publisher of the Year at the 2013 Bookseller Industry Awards, Carlton leads the market in branded and licensed non-fiction publishing.

My portfolio included official FIFA World Cup and Tour De France publishing in 2014, along with a four-year Imperial War Museum military-history programme to coincide with the centenary of World War One. Recent and brand partnerships included MENSA, Liberty of London, the ABBA museum, the Design Museum and Rugby World Cup.

Publishing & Commercial Director

Scholastic UK
March, 2010 – April, 2013 (about 3 years)

I was head of editorial, digital and licensing at Scholastic Children's Books UK, named Children's Publisher of the Year 2013 by The Bookseller. I was responsible for the entire list, comprising fiction, non fiction, picture books and novelty, including the imprints Alison Green Books and Marion Lloyd Books. I also initiated the digital and audio programme for SCB, and managed the licensing of key brands and properties.


Highlights of the publishing included The Hunger Games, Horrible Histories, His Dark Materials, Julia Donaldson/Axel Scheffler picture books such as Stick Man, Klutz, The Brilliant World of Tom Gates and Captain Underpants. Headline acquisitions included books from Henry Winkler, Dr Christian Jessen and CBeebies' Cerrie Burnell, and new publishing partnerships with the RSPCA and Transport for London.


Company successes during my tenure include Children’s Publisher of the Year in 2013; the Waterstones Prize, Roald Dahl Funny Prize, and Red House Children's Book Awards for The Brilliant World of Tom Gates; two Blue Peter Book Award winners: for Tom Gates: Genius Ideas (mostly) and Horrible Science: House of Horrors; winner of the Costa Children’s Book Award 2012 for Blood Red Road by Moira Young; shortlistings for A Greyhound of a Girl by Roddy Doyle for the Carnegie Medal 2013, Goblins by Philip Reeve for the Roald Dahl Funny Prize 2012 and The Highway Rat by Julia Donaldson and Axel Scheffler for the British Book Awards 2011.

Editorial Director - Non Fiction and Licensed Properties

Scholastic UK
June, 2005 – March, 2010 (over 4 years)

I managed a team that commissioned a list of approximately 150 non fiction and media titles per year, including the bestselling Horrible Histories series. I directed the licensing of Horrible Histories following its 2003 tenth anniversary, including (ongoing) live stage shows, five BAFTA-winning BBC TV series', two major Imperial War Museum exhibitions and an extensive merchandise programme including toys, gift products and a monthly magazine. During this time I also worked closely with New Line Cinema and Scholastic companies worldwide to create and implement The Golden Compass movie tie-in programme, based on Philip Pullman's bestselling novel, Northern Lights.

Editorial Director - Non Fiction

Scholastic UK
January, 2001 – June, 2005 (over 4 years)

Managed a team of editors working on the bestselling list, which was dominated by the 'Horribles' publishing: Horrible Histories, Horrible Science, Horrible Geography, Horribly Famous, Murderous Maths and Foul Football.

Portfolio (17 selected works)

The Hunger Games Complete Trilogy

Suzanne Collins

Set in a dark vision of the near future, a terrifying reality TV show is taking place. Twelve boys and twelve girls are forced to appear in a live event called The Hunger Games. There is only one rule: kill or be killed. When sixteen-year-old Katniss Everdeen steps forward to take her younger sister's place in the games, she sees it as a death sentence. But Katniss has been close to death befo... read more

Set in a dark vision of the near future, a terrifying reality TV show is taking place. Twelve boys and twelve girls are forced to appear in a live event called The Hunger Games. There is only one rule: kill or be killed. When sixteen-year-old Katniss Everdeen steps forward to take her younger sister's place in the games, she sees it as a death sentence. But Katniss has been close to death befo... read more

Horrible Histories: The Awesome Egyptians

Terry Deary

They're not called the Awesome Egyptians for nothing! The foul pharaohs and their suffering slaves got up to all sorts of terrible tricks. Read this book to... * Meet some fabulous pharaohs... and their mummies * Make revolting recipes for 3000 year old sweets * Discover which king had the most blackheads * Find out why some pharaohs wore false beards * Learn to become an Ancient Egyptian in 1... read more

They're not called the Awesome Egyptians for nothing! The foul pharaohs and their suffering slaves got up to all sorts of terrible tricks. Read this book to... * Meet some fabulous pharaohs... and their mummies * Make revolting recipes for 3000 year old sweets * Discover which king had the most blackheads * Find out why some pharaohs wore false beards * Learn to become an Ancient Egyptian in 1... read more

His Dark Materials: The Complete Trilogy

Philip Pullman

Set against the dreaming spires of Jordan College and the dangerous wilderness of the frozen north, Philip Pullman’s His Dark Materials trilogy offers an intoxicating blend of imagination, science, theology and adventure.This special collection features all three titles in the award-winning trilogy: Northern Lights, The Subtle Knife and The Amber Spyglass.Northern LightsLyra Belacqua lives hal... read more

Set against the dreaming spires of Jordan College and the dangerous wilderness of the frozen north, Philip Pullman’s His Dark Materials trilogy offers an intoxicating blend of imagination, science, theology and adventure.This special collection features all three titles in the award-winning trilogy: Northern Lights, The Subtle Knife and The Amber Spyglass.Northern LightsLyra Belacqua lives hal... read more

Dinosaurium

Welcome to the museum that is always open to explore... Step inside the pages of this beautiful book to discover galleries of dinosaurs, expertly curated to bring you the experience of a fascinating exhibition from the comfort of your own home.Dinosaurium features a wide range of dinosaurs from the most-loved Triceratops and Tyrannosaurus Rex to lesser-known species such as Coelophysis and Tsi... read more

Welcome to the museum that is always open to explore... Step inside the pages of this beautiful book to discover galleries of dinosaurs, expertly curated to bring you the experience of a fascinating exhibition from the comfort of your own home.Dinosaurium features a wide range of dinosaurs from the most-loved Triceratops and Tyrannosaurus Rex to lesser-known species such as Coelophysis and Tsi... read more

Alastair Humphreys' Great Adventurers

Alastair Humphreys

Hand-selected by Alastair Humpreys, read about the incredible journeys undertaken by twenty of the most heroic and impressive explorers who ever lived, including Ibn Battuta (14th-century explorer); Apsley Cherry-Garrard (a member of Scott's Antarctic expedition); Michael Collins (Apollo Moon mission astronaut) and Nellie Bly (who travelled round the world in less than 80 days). A wide-spread ... read more

Hand-selected by Alastair Humpreys, read about the incredible journeys undertaken by twenty of the most heroic and impressive explorers who ever lived, including Ibn Battuta (14th-century explorer); Apsley Cherry-Garrard (a member of Scott's Antarctic expedition); Michael Collins (Apollo Moon mission astronaut) and Nellie Bly (who travelled round the world in less than 80 days). A wide-spread ... read more

The Rhythm of the Rain

Grahame Baker-Smith

A beautiful, lyrical non-fiction picture book about the water cycle. Issac empties his little jar of water into a stream and follows its journey through the country and the city until it joins the ocean. On the other side of the world, Cassi welcomes the rain in her dry village, where rivers now run and make their way back to the sea. The cycle is complete as the sun heats the ocean and clouds... read more

A beautiful, lyrical non-fiction picture book about the water cycle. Issac empties his little jar of water into a stream and follows its journey through the country and the city until it joins the ocean. On the other side of the world, Cassi welcomes the rain in her dry village, where rivers now run and make their way back to the sea. The cycle is complete as the sun heats the ocean and clouds... read more

The Brilliant World of Tom Gates

Liz Pichon

Tom Gates is the master of excuses for late homework: dog attacks - spilt water - lightning... Tom's exercise book is full of his doodles and thoughts, as well as comments from his long-suffering teacher, Mr Fullerman.

Tom Gates is the master of excuses for late homework: dog attacks - spilt water - lightning... Tom's exercise book is full of his doodles and thoughts, as well as comments from his long-suffering teacher, Mr Fullerman.

Horrible Science: Blood, Bones and Body Bits

Nick Arnold

HORRIBLE SCIENCE: BLOOD, BONES AND BODY BITS is a bone-chilling book of bodies to make kids squeal! Find out what happens when a boil bursts. See what lives in your eyelashes. Gulp at the workings of your disgusting digestion. Redesigned in a bold, funky new look for the next generation of HORRIBLE SCIENCE fans.

HORRIBLE SCIENCE: BLOOD, BONES AND BODY BITS is a bone-chilling book of bodies to make kids squeal! Find out what happens when a boil bursts. See what lives in your eyelashes. Gulp at the workings of your disgusting digestion. Redesigned in a bold, funky new look for the next generation of HORRIBLE SCIENCE fans.

Planetarium

Raman Prinja

Welcome to the museum that is always open to explore... Step inside the pages of this beautiful book to discover galleries of galactic matter, expertly curated to bring you the experience of a fascinating exhibition from the comfort of your own home. Planetarium features all aspects of space, from the Sun and our Solar System, to the lives of stars, the Milky Way and the Universe beyond. With ... read more

Welcome to the museum that is always open to explore... Step inside the pages of this beautiful book to discover galleries of galactic matter, expertly curated to bring you the experience of a fascinating exhibition from the comfort of your own home. Planetarium features all aspects of space, from the Sun and our Solar System, to the lives of stars, the Milky Way and the Universe beyond. With ... read more

A Year in the Wild

Ruth Symons

Take a journey through the seasons in this beautiful book, made entirely from hand-pressed plants.Artist Helen Ahpornsiri transforms petals, leaves and seeds into bounding hares, swooping swallows and fluttering butterflies. Turn the page to watch flowers unfold, see birds take flight or peek inside animal homes. Marvel at the magic of each moment and rediscover the wonders of a year in the wi... read more

Take a journey through the seasons in this beautiful book, made entirely from hand-pressed plants.Artist Helen Ahpornsiri transforms petals, leaves and seeds into bounding hares, swooping swallows and fluttering butterflies. Turn the page to watch flowers unfold, see birds take flight or peek inside animal homes. Marvel at the magic of each moment and rediscover the wonders of a year in the wi... read more

Toto

Ximo Abadía

Living in a small town, Toto wishes to escape the inevitable life in front of him. He will never become a porter, he will become an astronaut instead! He bravely packs his bags, kisses his parents goodbye and sets off for the bright lights of the big city. Even when all his money for astronaut school is stolen by thieves, his hard work and stubborn determination sees him through. The small tow... read more

Living in a small town, Toto wishes to escape the inevitable life in front of him. He will never become a porter, he will become an astronaut instead! He bravely packs his bags, kisses his parents goodbye and sets off for the bright lights of the big city. Even when all his money for astronaut school is stolen by thieves, his hard work and stubborn determination sees him through. The small tow... read more

The Language of the Universe

Colin Stuart

From atoms to beehives to the movement of the planets, everything around us is buzzing with maths. So how does this language of numbers, symbols and equations make every single thing in our universe tick like an unseen clock? Visualise cosmic distances, discover the geometry in nature and marvel at the wonders of technology.Learn about mathematics in an extraordinary new light. Stunning surrea... read more

From atoms to beehives to the movement of the planets, everything around us is buzzing with maths. So how does this language of numbers, symbols and equations make every single thing in our universe tick like an unseen clock? Visualise cosmic distances, discover the geometry in nature and marvel at the wonders of technology.Learn about mathematics in an extraordinary new light. Stunning surrea... read more

I Really Want the Cake

Simon Philip

There's a smell I can't ignore.It's wafting through the kitchen door.It's time for me to find out more.I think it might be cake.How do you resist the most amazing cake ever? Especially when your mum has left a note saying that you MUST NOT eat the cake? This wonderful rhyming text from Simon Philip, author of You Must Bring a Hat, is illustrated with huge energy and humour by Lucia Gaggiotti.

There's a smell I can't ignore.It's wafting through the kitchen door.It's time for me to find out more.I think it might be cake.How do you resist the most amazing cake ever? Especially when your mum has left a note saying that you MUST NOT eat the cake? This wonderful rhyming text from Simon Philip, author of You Must Bring a Hat, is illustrated with huge energy and humour by Lucia Gaggiotti.

I say Ooh You say Aah

John Kane

'There's something very important that I need you to remember. When I say Ooh, you say Aah. Let's try it.'Ooh the donkey has lost his pants. Readers must help him find them! In this picture book, young readers help to sell the story by responding to simple verbal or visual cues. This hilarious book is perfect for reading aloud and is fun for the whole family.

'There's something very important that I need you to remember. When I say Ooh, you say Aah. Let's try it.'Ooh the donkey has lost his pants. Readers must help him find them! In this picture book, young readers help to sell the story by responding to simple verbal or visual cues. This hilarious book is perfect for reading aloud and is fun for the whole family.

My Story: Suffragette

Carol Drinkwater

It's 1909. Dollie is swept up in the thrill of the campaign for Votes for Women. Against her guardian's wishes, she marches against Parliament with Emmeline Pankhurst and fellow suffragettes. Things turn violent, women are imprisoned and endanger their lives with hunger strikes. Dollie must decide how far she will go for 'Deeds, not words'...

It's 1909. Dollie is swept up in the thrill of the campaign for Votes for Women. Against her guardian's wishes, she marches against Parliament with Emmeline Pankhurst and fellow suffragettes. Things turn violent, women are imprisoned and endanger their lives with hunger strikes. Dollie must decide how far she will go for 'Deeds, not words'...

My Story: Battle of Britain

Chris Priestley

OCTOBER 1940. I was out, free of my aircraft, tumbling wildly in the air. I pulled the ripcord. I was jerked back by the parachute as air punched into it and I swung there like a puppet, winded and gasping for breath. I looked down at my leg. It felt like a bear was gnawing on it but it was still in one piece. For now, anyway. Then I heard it - right behind me. An ME109 diving towards me, guns... read more

OCTOBER 1940. I was out, free of my aircraft, tumbling wildly in the air. I pulled the ripcord. I was jerked back by the parachute as air punched into it and I swung there like a puppet, winded and gasping for breath. I looked down at my leg. It felt like a bear was gnawing on it but it was still in one piece. For now, anyway. Then I heard it - right behind me. An ME109 diving towards me, guns... read more

Blood Red Road

Moira Young

Saba's twin is golden. She is his living shadow. He is strong and beautiful. She is scrawny and dark. But nothing will separate them... Raised in isolated Silverlake, Saba is ignorant of the violent and dangerous world beyond, where life is cheap and survival is hard. But when her twin brother is snatched by mysterious black-robed riders, she sets out on an epic quest to rescue him. How will S... read more

Saba's twin is golden. She is his living shadow. He is strong and beautiful. She is scrawny and dark. But nothing will separate them... Raised in isolated Silverlake, Saba is ignorant of the violent and dangerous world beyond, where life is cheap and survival is hard. But when her twin brother is snatched by mysterious black-robed riders, she sets out on an epic quest to rescue him. How will S... read more

Lisa has 8 reviews

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

Kevin Phillips
Lisa has been an incredible asset to getting my book Agent ready. She's meticulous in her approach and will challenge your thinking on how you think things should be as opposed to how they need to be. I would highly recommend anyone looking for an experienced Editor to trust your MS to her.

Kevin Phillips, October 2019

Lisa Edwards
Thank you so much, Kevin. I loved working with you on your novel and can't wait to see it out there in the world!

Reply from Lisa Edwards


Jan Foster
Lisa has been constructive and yet positive in her editing of my first drat, I look forward to a long and fruitful relationship in the future!

Jan Foster, September 2019

Lisa Edwards
Thanks Jan! A pleasure to work with you.

Reply from Lisa Edwards


Kyle Harracksingh
Lisa was the perfect editor that I needed. She went above and beyond with my work, her talent was matched only by her dedication and professionalism. Without her input, my book would not have been anything close to what it is today. With her attention to detail, she was able to really pick it apart and reinforce weaker areas that as a writer I wasn't able to pick up on my own. In summary, she s...
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Kyle Harracksingh, September 2019

Lisa Edwards
Thank you so much, Kyle. You were so responsive to all my suggestions and I loved getting into the nitty gritty of the text with you. Five-star author!

Reply from Lisa Edwards


Gregory Campbell
Lisa was personable, approachable and supportive. This was a first foray into the world of writing and she was fantastic at explaining the steps, options and approach. Quality of output was great too. Thanks Lisa

Gregory Campbell, August 2019

Lisa Edwards
Thanks, Greg. A pleasure to complete this lovely text with you.

Reply from Lisa Edwards


Sinclair McLay
I asked Lisa for advice, she gave it and I listened because it was expect advice. Can’t say fairer than that :-)

Sinclair McLay, August 2019

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