Margaret Diehl

Margaret Diehl – Editor

Published novelist and memoirist with extensive editing experience who takes pleasure in assisting other writers solve problems.


I'm a fiction writer and editor who has published three New York Times Notable Books of The Year (two novels and a memoir), won a National Endowment for the Arts Fellowship and been helping other writers improve their work for over a decade. I bring to the table a deep understanding of the writing process—writing blocks, confusion about what the story is or could be, and indecision about choices. I know that helpful criticism requires both honesty and kindness, as well as a profound appreciation of how stories and language work.

I work with writers of any genre and at all stages of their career. I offer creative, in-depth story analysis, with suggestions based on the intent of the manuscript and your strengths; support and advice on how to improve your writing in general. The service generally includes extensive comments on the manuscript and a several-page critique, but I can work with your needs and your budget to give you exactly what you want.

Here is a URL to a Reedsy article about one successful collaboration.
Biographies & Memoirs
Contemporary Fiction Fantasy Historical Fiction Literary Fiction Mystery & Crime
English (US)
  • National Endowment for the Arts Fellowship in Fiction
  • New York State Council on the Arts Grant in Non-fiction
  • BA, English, University of New Hampshire

Work experience

Cathedral of St John the Divine

Feb, 2010 — May, 2018 (about 8 years)

I wrote and edited newsletters, brochures, and grants on all aspects of the famous cathedral's programming, including education, social justice, and the arts.


Feb, 2007 — Present

After publishing three books, and reviewing books for The New York Times and other publications, I started editing and assessing manuscripts for friends and friends of friends. Gradually, this turned into a business and now I work at it full-time. I have worked with fiction writers, poets, academics, and writers of nonfiction from history to psychology to self-help and business, doing everything from copy editing to ghostwriting. All kinds of editing and genres feed each other; I learn from my clients as they learn from me.


The Flooding

Hancock, Sean

Down Wind and out of Sight

Richardson, Douglas


Zerndt, Jamie

The Sex Traffickers

Pollack, Neil

Rainbow Plague

Athena, Lia

Crane Boy

Cohn, Diana

Death Postponed

Berger, Gustaf


Karleen Staible

Emily Fenner, an aspirant Broadway star, hopes to find all of her dreams in the big city and flashing lights. With beauty, talent, and an irrepressible desire to succeed, Emily is in the perfect position to take hold of the career she’s always wanted—until sti... read more
Georgina's new found love is put to the test in the stunning sequel to Louise Franklin's novel Ravenstone. In this second book in the spellbinding Ravenstone Chronicles series, author Louise Franklin combines a regency setting and adventure to create a love st... read more
In 1968, Mike Kelly's chopper is shot down over the jungles of Vietnam. The crew is dead. Most of his team is dead and the enemy is near. Today it is 2004, and Mike is a successful author who writes for the daily newspaper. He lives in a big house on the lake ... read more
Born into a privileged life in London during the Regency era, all that is required of Georgiana Wyndham is to live a life of virtue and obedience. She fails at both when her father abuses her. Headstrong and high-spirited, though crippled by his severe beating... read more

Margaret Diehl

Beautiful, talented Stella James explores the heady power of her own sexuality by seeking out anonymous sexual encounters. Though the men may long to see her again, by dawn Stella is always gone. She revels in the intensity and honesty of her encounters and de... read more
In a memoir of her large Southern family, the author focuses on her four siblings, rendering each with vivid compassion and revealing the joy and innocence that marked their passage to adulthood.
In Riding with the Wind, Fay Hoh Yin paints an indelible portrait of three generations of her family in China as the imperial era ends and war with Japan begins. Her parents are among the first young people to escape the archaic traditions of foot binding and ... read more
The Trudeau Vector

Juris Jurjevics

When three members of the Trudeau Research Center scientific team are murdered at the onset of an arctic winter, epidemiologist Jessica Hanley finds her investigation intersecting with the secret mission of a decorated admiral from Moscow, who has been assigne... read more
The Stuttering Jock’s Opera is a thinly disguised hero’s journey—complete with three challenges. The lead character is physically reckless, but socially shy because of his halting speech. He trains in the early morning, works temporary clerical jobs during the... read more
Salt Houses

Hala Alyan

Named a Best Book of the Year by NPR * Nylon * Kirkus Reviews * Bustle * BookPage “Moving and beautifully written.” — Entertainment Weekly “[Alyan is] a master.” — Los Angeles Review of Books On the eve of her daughter Alia’s wedding, Salma reads the girl’s fu... read more

Margaret has 170 reviews





Kenny P.

Kenny P.

Apr, 2024

Margaret’s insightful editing has helped bring my work to life. She recently completed her second developmental edit of my manuscript. Her first critique, a year ago, was extensive and combined incisive criticism with generous support. It consisted of a lengthy, thoughtful, and perceptive commentary. Along with that, her many comments written on the manuscript added specificity. When I received...
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Meredith S.

Meredith S.

Mar, 2024

Margaret is incredible. She provided me with two rounds of edits for my manuscript - one developmental edit, one "lite" developmental edit with a line edit. The line edit occurred two years after the first developmental edit, and she not only remembered my book, but went back and reviewed the original in the course of the second round to see the changes that I'd made. There are several things t...
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Margaret D.
Thank you so much. I enjoy your writing immensely.
Raymond H.

Raymond H.

Mar, 2024

Margaret is an excellent editor and provided many insights and suggestions that greatly improved with story. I believe the revisions resulting from her suggestions will provide a more enjoyable experience for the reader.
Margaret D.
Thank you!
Greg M.

Greg M.

Mar, 2024

Margaret gave interesting insight and valuable suggestions. As authors, we don't need to agree to incorporate all suggestions, but some of the points she made will improve the story and make it more interesting to the reader.
Gorge M.

Gorge M.

Mar, 2024

Margaret is an excellent editor. She was responsive, clear, and efficient. I loved how she reviewed my manuscript with a voice that made me feel she was offering advice while sitting across a cafe table with me,

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