Michael Green

Michael Green – Editor

Let's get you published! Editor of 30 NYT bestselling books for kids and teens now freelance for writers and agents. How can I be of help?


Hi, I am the former President and Publisher of Philomel Books, an imprint of Penguin Young Readers / Penguin Random House. I personally edited 30 New York Times bestselling titles for young readers, including several that went all the way to #1. Along the way I helped transform Philomel from small boutique imprint to commercial and literary force. For middle-grade and YA readers, I accepted the challenge head-on to bring reluctant readers to books without sacrificing quality writing, launching multiple series that dominated shelf space in bookstores. When it came to picture books I focused on family-friendly stories, often with a humorous edge. I was fortunate to work with some of the finest writers and artists in the industry, among them Eric Carle, Oliver Jeffers, Loren Long, Maryann Cusimano Love, Drew Daywalt, Berkeley Breathed, John Flanagan, Anthony Horowitz, Mike Lupica, Brian Jacques, Nancy Springer, and Ruta Sepetys. Yet nothing was quite so satisfying as discovering a new writing voice and mentoring it. As the author testimonials on my website point out, I relished the role of star-maker.

As your story curator, I can help in many ways. Are you hoping to land a publisher or agent? Are you planning to self-publish your book? Are you an agent seeking to tighten and polish a favorite client's manuscript prior to submitting to an editor? I can help tighten or enhance plot, flesh out characters, keep your story pacing honest, and make certain all significant moments scan within the greater timeline. Simply submit the opening few chapters of your manuscript along with a one-page summary of the project. Should you have a picture book manuscript, please submit it in its entirety and feel free to include sample illustrations if applicable. If I believe I can be of assistance, I'll be back in touch with a detailed work proposal. There is no fee for the initial consultation.

Let's get you published!


“Michael acquired, helped edit, and brought to market my very first novel in the RANGER'S APPRENTICE series, forever changing my life. He has an unerring way of spotting problems in a story and suggesting positive ways to resolve them. I enjoyed working with him immensely. In fact, it turned out so well that we did it again (and again).”--John Flanagan, internationally bestselling author of the RANGER'S APPRENTICE and BROTHERBAND series

"Michael picked me out from the slush pile. Barely in my 20s and having very little idea what I was doing, I blindly mailed my first picture book dummy to dozens of publishers. Michael acted immediately, tracking me down in Belfast. He was the first to give me a ‘break,’ offering sage and unselfish advice right from our first meeting and continuing over the course of the next fifteen years. He supported my intent and style while never pressuring me to be anything other than myself. All these years later he remains an invaluable friend and advisor.”--Oliver Jeffers, illustrator of the #1 international bestseller THE DAY THE CRAYONS QUIT and author/illustrator of HERE WE ARE and STUCK

“Amidst many rejections and a complex marketplace, Michael saw something in my writing that others did not. He took a chance on me, investing his time and talent to create novels with the type of impact I could only dream of. From idea genesis to specific editorial guidance to eventual publication in over sixty countries, Michael oversaw the whole process. He invested his time and talent not only to build a novel, but also to build a career. I am forever grateful.”--Ruta Sepetys, Carnegie Award-winning, internationally bestselling author of the historical fiction novels BETWEEN SHADES OF GRAY and SALT TO THE SEA

“Michael and I had a lot of fun together and ended up selling a LOT of books.”--Mike Lupica, Hall of Fame sports writer and #1 bestselling author of TRAVEL TEAM and HEAT

“I worked with Michael for fifteen years and I’ve yet to meet a more intuitive, informed, and enthusiastic editor. I owe him a lot.”--Anthony Horowitz, author of the #1 international bestselling ALEX RIDER novels

Action & Adventure Historical Fiction Literary Fiction Middle Grade Middle Grade Fantasy Picture Books
Biographies & Memoirs Sports & Outdoors
English (US)

Work experience

Penguin Random House

Mar, 1991 — Apr, 2018 (about 27 years)

From editorial assistant to President and Publisher, I experienced it all while ascending the publishing ladder. Along the way I edited 30 New York Times bestselling titles, 7 of which went to #1. From touchstone picture books (The Day the Crayons Quit; Here We Are; the Otis the Tractor series; You Are My I Love You) to middle-grade novels (Travel Team; Heat; Alex Rider Stormbreaker; Redwall) to stories for young adults (Ranger's Apprentice Ruins of Gorlan; Salt to the Sea; Enola Holmes), I edited many genres of books for young readers and adults who craved stories that hold up over repeated readings and the passage of time. I also worked hand in hand with the sharpest Sales and Marketing minds in all of publishing.


Sep, 2020 — Present

After 27 years in Big Publishing, I created a freelance editorial service that would allow me to work on a broader range of projects. In addition to books for kids and teens, I now also edit memoir and literary fiction for adult readers.

Michael has 10 reviews





Paul H.

Paul H.

May, 2022

Writing a review is bit uncomfortable for me but I have to express how invaluable it’s been to work with Michael. His insights and feedbacks are, yes, often tough to hear but they are absolutely honest. I cannot thank him enough for that. He helped me see the weaknesses I was too blind to see while being equally encouraging about the fight ahead. He was also kind enough to read through my manus...
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Elle G.

Elle G.

Sep, 2021

Michael was professional, honest and executed delivery with amazing attention to my needs and style preferences; while providing guidance to assist my journey. Highly recommended.
Steve K.

Steve K.

Mar, 2021

Michael was excellent! His notes, feedback, and suggestions were worth so much more than he charged me. I hope to work with him again in the future on more projects.
Laurie M.

Laurie M.

Feb, 2021

Michael did an editorial assessment for me. He took a genuine interest in my work. He gave wonderful feedback and went the extra mile in helping me take the next step! He is the kind of delightful person that it is always a pleasure to run across. Thoroughly enjoyed working with him!
Barrie S.

Barrie S.

Oct, 2020

Michael was brilliant. Fast, efficient, insightful and encouraging. I couldn't ask for a better editor. I'm so grateful I found him!

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