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Maria D'Marco

Maria D'Marco - Editor

Kansas City, MO, United States

Empathetic, bespoke developmental editor specializing in YA, Romance, Historical fiction & Self-Help. Tune in the truth of your concept.

Overview

Reviews (6)

I am a professional book editor, specializing in developmental & 'heavy' copy edits of manuscripts ranging from raw first drafts to material that has survived several iterations & editorial 'beatings'.

Developmental edits demand that I immerse myself in the material, becoming 'every reader', as well as jungle guide, therapist, & devil's advocate. A novel has a duty to readers to take them on a journey that is engaging, makes sense, stretches their imagination, & provides comfortable entertainment. To accomplish this smooth 'ride', a novelist needs to disappear behind the story, dropping breadcrumbs and nudging the reader in the right direction with writing that feels natural and intuitive.

My manuscript assessments and developmental edits provide annotated notes and direct-to-manuscript margin notes that tie together illustrations of issues within the manuscript and detailed guidance on why the issue is an issue.

For over 20 years I have collaborated with authors, becoming steeped in their processes, dreams, desires -- all the steps along their path to publication. During this time, I have encountered authors who became good friends, as well as repeat clients, while continuously stuffing my head with current information that ensures I guide each author I meet within contemporary standards and trends.

I view every author and their manuscript as unique, and therefore, the edit process/service I recommend must also be unique, offering benefits tailored to specific needs or to the specific stage of the manuscript.

So, whether you are taking readers on a journey beyond this dimension, embroiling readers in a searing romance, or revealing your proprietary system for strengthening our life experience, my bespoke approach will honor your concept and your needs to express that concept.

I have been fortunate to have many wonderful editing experiences on Reedsy, as the reviews from a few authors below can attest:

"Ms. D'Marco was amazing. This is my first time working with a professional editor and I was very nervous. I vetted about about nine other editors and loved her sample edit and the way she communicated with me. My gut said this was the right fit so I went with it. And let me tell you, I am not disappointed! I intend to work with Ms. D'Marco as much as possible in the future. She was professional, thorough, and encouraging. As well as going above and beyond what I asked for, she has also been quick to respond to any and all my questions."
--Trish Heinrich

"Maria was great to work with. She was speedy and professional, keeping me updated along the entire process. And her enthusiasm for my work gave me encouragement when I needed it!"
--Zubin Mathai

"I'm grateful that a service like Reedsy makes it possible for a new writer to connect with professionals like Maria. I've learned a great deal from the editing process, Maria's experience. and her ability to communicate exactly what must be changed to make the story tighter. A fantastic experience!"
--Rachel Weishaar

I was also delighted to support Leslie Heath, who relates her editing experience here:
https://blog.reedsy.com/editor-publishing-deal

My edit interactions with authors do not stop at the completion of an edit or assessment, and will remain available for consults to clarify my notes and comments as you conduct your review in preparation for rewrites. My view is that you cannot utilize my guidance if you have questions about what I mean, so: I am here for you.

As an extension of every authors' journey to publication, I also offer support for agent queries, book proposals, synopses, and cover blurbs.

Wanting to be certain your story, your message and your concept is clear? Let's get together and figure it out!

Services
Languages
English (UK) English (US)
Fiction
Comics & Graphic Novels Dystopian Fantasy Historical Fiction Romance Science Fiction Young Adult & Teen
Non-Fiction
Self-help & Self-improvement

Certifications

  • Copy Editing I, II (EFA)
  • Master Writers I & II (John Yeoman -2012)

Work experience

Editor, Copy Writer

Self-employed
May, 1988 – Present (about 29 years)

Perform all levels of manuscript edits, from in-depth developmental-substantive edits to comprehensive copy edits to insightful and illuminating manuscript assessments.

Establish collaborative partnerships with authors, tailoring editing to their needs in order to produce the highest iteration of their book within their budget parameters.

Coach authors through all developmental levels of their books, from initial concepts to world-building to developing character profiles or blocking out a first draft, and beyond.

Ghost-editing support from rough draft through final polish.

Produce B2B-B2C web content, magazine and online articles, short stories. Collaborate with web designers. SEO literate.

Portfolio (21 selected works)

Birth of a Destiny (Light Bearer Book 1)

T.R. Milne

Evil stalks her. True love finds her. Destiny claims her. Rose wakes from a coma to find her life has changed forever. Her parents were killed in the accident that nearly claimed her life. Now orphaned, her mother's sister brings her to live in the country with her cousins, who quickly make their resentment known. Once courageous and full of life, Rose now exists in the murky shades of grief. ... read more

Evil stalks her. True love finds her. Destiny claims her. Rose wakes from a coma to find her life has changed forever. Her parents were killed in the accident that nearly claimed her life. Now orphaned, her mother's sister brings her to live in the country with her cousins, who quickly make their resentment known. Once courageous and full of life, Rose now exists in the murky shades of grief. ... read more

The Mighty Beam Generation: The Complete Saga - Parts 1, 2, 3, 4

Benoit Fiset

Just when everyone thought our times would never go beyond stare-at-a-screen boring, along comes a generation that outshines the Beats, the Baby Boomers, the Xs, the Ys, the Zs, the Romans, and the Cowboys! The Mighty Beam Generation! ("Big" + "Dream" = Beam!) This highly imaginative graphic novel tells the saga of a band of Beamers ― baffled but driven, foolish yet brilliant ― on the fast tra... read more

Just when everyone thought our times would never go beyond stare-at-a-screen boring, along comes a generation that outshines the Beats, the Baby Boomers, the Xs, the Ys, the Zs, the Romans, and the Cowboys! The Mighty Beam Generation! ("Big" + "Dream" = Beam!) This highly imaginative graphic novel tells the saga of a band of Beamers ― baffled but driven, foolish yet brilliant ― on the fast tra... read more

4D Leadership

Dr Hisham Abdalla

“Dr. Hisham's 4D Leadership is a fascinating book. He understands clearly what it takes to succeed and is a guiding light for others. Awareness is key and applying the principles in this book will open the door to your successful life.” - Bob Proctor, Best-selling author of ‘You Were Born Rich’ and star of ‘The Secret’ “Dr. Hisham has created a brilliant piece of work with his 4D Leadership bo... read more

“Dr. Hisham's 4D Leadership is a fascinating book. He understands clearly what it takes to succeed and is a guiding light for others. Awareness is key and applying the principles in this book will open the door to your successful life.” - Bob Proctor, Best-selling author of ‘You Were Born Rich’ and star of ‘The Secret’ “Dr. Hisham has created a brilliant piece of work with his 4D Leadership bo... read more

Yarns from Yandilla

Karen Knight-Mudie

When two newcomers settle in the Shire of Yandilla (situated somewhere in the middle of the hinterland that skits the long eastern coast of Australia) they disrupt the peaceful environment. They play pranks on the folk of LillyVille, they cause havoc in the valley and they upset the fairies and elves. Those newcomers are Barry Badger and Tub the Toad. Neither Barry Badger nor Tub the Toad unde... read more

When two newcomers settle in the Shire of Yandilla (situated somewhere in the middle of the hinterland that skits the long eastern coast of Australia) they disrupt the peaceful environment. They play pranks on the folk of LillyVille, they cause havoc in the valley and they upset the fairies and elves. Those newcomers are Barry Badger and Tub the Toad. Neither Barry Badger nor Tub the Toad unde... read more

March

Sunni Overend

A creative wunderkind who once topped the country's most prestigious fashion school, Apple March is now languishing behind a retail counter. When fate shifts and her imaginative passion is reawakened, so too is the threat of a past secret. From the cool heart of Melbourne to Paris and New York, in a vibrant world of Pimms and croquet, crocodile boots and cocoon coats, Apple seeks the thrill of... read more

A creative wunderkind who once topped the country's most prestigious fashion school, Apple March is now languishing behind a retail counter. When fate shifts and her imaginative passion is reawakened, so too is the threat of a past secret. From the cool heart of Melbourne to Paris and New York, in a vibrant world of Pimms and croquet, crocodile boots and cocoon coats, Apple seeks the thrill of... read more

Secrets, Spies and Spotted Dogs: Unravelling mysterious family connections behind a secret adoption

Jane Eales

A simple need for her birth certificate leads Jane, aged 19, to a devastating secret: she is adopted. Stunned, Jane is sworn to secrecy and forbidden to search for her biological family - a promise she honours until the death of her adoptive parents. A heart-wrenching family crisis and a longing to know her origins then drive Jane to painstakingly research her roots in Rhodesia, Johannesburg, ... read more

A simple need for her birth certificate leads Jane, aged 19, to a devastating secret: she is adopted. Stunned, Jane is sworn to secrecy and forbidden to search for her biological family - a promise she honours until the death of her adoptive parents. A heart-wrenching family crisis and a longing to know her origins then drive Jane to painstakingly research her roots in Rhodesia, Johannesburg, ... read more

All the Way to the USA: Australian WWII War Brides (Paperback) - Common

By (author) Robyn Arrowsmith

Dr Robyn Arrowsmith is author and publisher of All The Way To The USA: Australian WWII War Brides, which is based on ten years research for her PhD at Macquarie University. Robyn has travelled to America a number of times to meet with some of the remarkable Australian women who fell in love with US servicemen during the urgency and social chaos of WWII. The book chronicles the true and poignan... read more

Dr Robyn Arrowsmith is author and publisher of All The Way To The USA: Australian WWII War Brides, which is based on ten years research for her PhD at Macquarie University. Robyn has travelled to America a number of times to meet with some of the remarkable Australian women who fell in love with US servicemen during the urgency and social chaos of WWII. The book chronicles the true and poignan... read more

Parent Guide: Success at School and Beyond - 7 Simple steps to boost your child's

Enza Lyons

'Success at School and Beyond' shows you seven simple steps how to boost your child's ability to learn, to have more confidence and self-esteem, for greater success in school and in life. Having fun, being in the moment developing happier, healthier and confident children. This is a book I wish I had when I was raising my children. I dedicate my book to them. I am excited to share my experienc... read more

'Success at School and Beyond' shows you seven simple steps how to boost your child's ability to learn, to have more confidence and self-esteem, for greater success in school and in life. Having fun, being in the moment developing happier, healthier and confident children. This is a book I wish I had when I was raising my children. I dedicate my book to them. I am excited to share my experienc... read more

Solitary Desire

Kim Defforge

The author takes us along on her journey as she narrates the life events that weave an emotional tapestry, from adolescent imagination to adult life situations. Conveying amusing candor, Defforge details how she came full circle, from Paris to “la vie en rose” on the French Riviera. A true story of twists and turns and the author’s courage to follow it.

The author takes us along on her journey as she narrates the life events that weave an emotional tapestry, from adolescent imagination to adult life situations. Conveying amusing candor, Defforge details how she came full circle, from Paris to “la vie en rose” on the French Riviera. A true story of twists and turns and the author’s courage to follow it.

The Waverly House

J.J. Thomas

Donning a pressed apron and tender smile, Agnes Waverly puts the final touches on another scrumptious meal at her quaint bed and breakfast. But even Agnes has secrets...perhaps one that she may share. That is of course, if her deceased husband, Walter, doesn't take a liking to you. Unfortunately for guests of the Waverly House, Agnes will be the first to know.Being curious of odd noises around... read more

Donning a pressed apron and tender smile, Agnes Waverly puts the final touches on another scrumptious meal at her quaint bed and breakfast. But even Agnes has secrets...perhaps one that she may share. That is of course, if her deceased husband, Walter, doesn't take a liking to you. Unfortunately for guests of the Waverly House, Agnes will be the first to know.Being curious of odd noises around... read more

Dorothy's Oz Dream: A Guide to Enchantment and Empowerment

Jonathan Kroner

Lost the magic? Stressed and struggling on the way to your dreams? Find your happiness, as revealed through a mythical, magical dream. With simple, understandable explanations, this insightful book explores an empowering allegory – how Dorothy finds courage, wisdom, passion, and magic using her dreamer’s toolkit. It reveals Dorothy's way to happiness, independence and success; the secrets to h... read more

Lost the magic? Stressed and struggling on the way to your dreams? Find your happiness, as revealed through a mythical, magical dream. With simple, understandable explanations, this insightful book explores an empowering allegory – how Dorothy finds courage, wisdom, passion, and magic using her dreamer’s toolkit. It reveals Dorothy's way to happiness, independence and success; the secrets to h... read more

Winning The Talent War

Kerry Larkan

Demographics, globalisation, technology and the knowledge worker are impacting business growth in Asia and across the world. Despite these external issues, many so-called leaders are contributing to internal issues impeding success. People are looking for a quick fix, the magic bullet and the truth is that none exists. Too many managers prefer paper work to people work and the short-term view ... read more

Demographics, globalisation, technology and the knowledge worker are impacting business growth in Asia and across the world. Despite these external issues, many so-called leaders are contributing to internal issues impeding success. People are looking for a quick fix, the magic bullet and the truth is that none exists. Too many managers prefer paper work to people work and the short-term view ... read more

Balance & Being

Diane Randall

Are you a professional woman ready to harmonize family career and self? This interactive and insightful book is divided into 7 short thorough exercises that will guide you, systematically, through a process of defining your personal Life Balance. You will assess your present situation by identifying your current values and life purpose. The discoveries you encounter in each of the 7 steps can ... read more

Are you a professional woman ready to harmonize family career and self? This interactive and insightful book is divided into 7 short thorough exercises that will guide you, systematically, through a process of defining your personal Life Balance. You will assess your present situation by identifying your current values and life purpose. The discoveries you encounter in each of the 7 steps can ... read more

Ayahuasca: An Executive's Enlightenment

Michael Sanders

Deep in the Amazon jungle, Ayahuasca: An Executive's Enlightenment chronicles a young man's self-transcendence to become one with the Mother of the Rainforest and the creator of the universe. A successful advertising executive, Michael Sanders travels to Peru on a quest for clarity and enlightenment. He partakes in three shamanistic ceremonies with the psychedelic plant medicine known as Ayahu... read more

Deep in the Amazon jungle, Ayahuasca: An Executive's Enlightenment chronicles a young man's self-transcendence to become one with the Mother of the Rainforest and the creator of the universe. A successful advertising executive, Michael Sanders travels to Peru on a quest for clarity and enlightenment. He partakes in three shamanistic ceremonies with the psychedelic plant medicine known as Ayahu... read more

Raiding the Empire of the Sun: Tinian 1945

Kit Crumpton

Raiding the Empire of the Sun: Tinian 1945 is a historical novel of B-29 Superfortress missions over Japan during the last year of WWII. This book is based on real life events of a B-29 crew, describing life on Tinian Island as well as the dramatic happenings in the skies over enemy territory until the end of the war. The characters are fictionalized but the main character, Captain Jenson, is ... read more

Raiding the Empire of the Sun: Tinian 1945 is a historical novel of B-29 Superfortress missions over Japan during the last year of WWII. This book is based on real life events of a B-29 crew, describing life on Tinian Island as well as the dramatic happenings in the skies over enemy territory until the end of the war. The characters are fictionalized but the main character, Captain Jenson, is ... read more

The Painful Truth: What Chronic Pain Is Really Like and Why It Matters to Each of Us

Lynn R. Webster

Pain is an unbidden guest, humanity's shadow companion down through the ages. It is a despoiler of dreams and a thief. Chronic pain can appear suddenly in a person's life, changing it forever. Dr. Lynn R. Webster puts a face on chronic pain through the lives of his patients, and provides an intimate view of what it is like to live with it. The Painful Truth will open your eyes to the world of ... read more

Pain is an unbidden guest, humanity's shadow companion down through the ages. It is a despoiler of dreams and a thief. Chronic pain can appear suddenly in a person's life, changing it forever. Dr. Lynn R. Webster puts a face on chronic pain through the lives of his patients, and provides an intimate view of what it is like to live with it. The Painful Truth will open your eyes to the world of ... read more

The Rebel (The Rulemanian Rebellion trilogy Book 1)

Rachel Keeley

Welcome to Rulemania, a small country in the south pacific. On the outside, it is a flourishing nation with happy citizens and a fair ruler. On the inside, the country is almost torn apart by conflict. Prince Thomas is the tyrant that rules there with an iron fist. Power is his motive and his greatest weapon is fear. Everyone is afraid of him, except for one girl. Risa Kirek hates Thomas for n... read more

Welcome to Rulemania, a small country in the south pacific. On the outside, it is a flourishing nation with happy citizens and a fair ruler. On the inside, the country is almost torn apart by conflict. Prince Thomas is the tyrant that rules there with an iron fist. Power is his motive and his greatest weapon is fear. Everyone is afraid of him, except for one girl. Risa Kirek hates Thomas for n... read more

The Oarsman

Zubin Mathai

In the novel, The Oarsman, a magical river begins singing out, and a dying man suddenly aches to know if the paradise at its end is real enough to fill his heart. He hires an oarsman to take him upstream, but a twisted encounter sends them back to revisit every role the man has played in his long life.A merchant hoarding, an artist trying to capture love with a brush, a warrior looking for pea... read more

In the novel, The Oarsman, a magical river begins singing out, and a dying man suddenly aches to know if the paradise at its end is real enough to fill his heart. He hires an oarsman to take him upstream, but a twisted encounter sends them back to revisit every role the man has played in his long life.A merchant hoarding, an artist trying to capture love with a brush, a warrior looking for pea... read more

North Side Hellion

Ben Broeren

Vice, Loyalty, and Passion in the Roaring TwentiesAiden McCarthy enjoys thieving and scheming much more than abiding by the morals of his Catholic, Irish-American, working-class parents. He has always been a pisser, but working for the North Side Gang feeds his youthful desire for action, rebellion, and romance.When Aiden's pa is injured in crossfire between Italian gangsters, he must balance ... read more

Vice, Loyalty, and Passion in the Roaring TwentiesAiden McCarthy enjoys thieving and scheming much more than abiding by the morals of his Catholic, Irish-American, working-class parents. He has always been a pisser, but working for the North Side Gang feeds his youthful desire for action, rebellion, and romance.When Aiden's pa is injured in crossfire between Italian gangsters, he must balance ... read more

The Fading of Lloyd

Kit Crumpton

The Fading of Lloyd embroils the reader in family history as members struggle through historic challenges: the end of the American frontier, the dawn of railroad travel that wove Midwest communities together, World War I, and the social mores of the 1920s and 1930s.The Huttleston family, whose son, Lloyd, is mentally retarded, struggles to cope with the difficulties encountered with his care. ... read more

The Fading of Lloyd embroils the reader in family history as members struggle through historic challenges: the end of the American frontier, the dawn of railroad travel that wove Midwest communities together, World War I, and the social mores of the 1920s and 1930s.The Huttleston family, whose son, Lloyd, is mentally retarded, struggles to cope with the difficulties encountered with his care. ... read more

The Messenger: Origins (The Messenger Series Book 1)

JW Harrelson

The Order of the Dragon is a secret organization founded within the shadows of the Knights Templar. Their goal is to unite the world under one ruler: The Dracul. Many have sensed their existence, but none have been able to concretely expose them… until now.Tuttle, a special operator within the Secret Army of Northern Virginia, has pieced together enough information to expose the Order of the D... read more

The Order of the Dragon is a secret organization founded within the shadows of the Knights Templar. Their goal is to unite the world under one ruler: The Dracul. Many have sensed their existence, but none have been able to concretely expose them… until now.Tuttle, a special operator within the Secret Army of Northern Virginia, has pieced together enough information to expose the Order of the D... read more

Maria has 6 reviews

Professionalism
Quality
Value
Communication

Kadian Thomas

Maria was great and her work was in-depth and thorough. I would recommend.

, June 2017


Rachel Weishaar

I'm grateful that a service like Reedsy makes it possible for a new writer to connect with professionals like Maria. I've learned a great deal from the editing process, Maria's experience. and her ability to communicate exactly what must be changed to make the story tighter. A fantastic experience!

, April 2017


Trish Heinrich

Ms. D'Marco was amazing. This is my first time working with a professional editor and I was very nervous. I vetted about about nine other editors and loved her sample edit and the way she communicated with me. My gut said this was the right fit so I went with it. And let me tell you, I am not disappointed! I intend to work with Ms. D'Marco as much as possible in the future. She was professiona...

, February 2017


Samantha Shope

Extremely professional

, January 2017


Zubin Mathai

Maria was great to work with. She was speedy and professional, keeping me updated along the entire process. And her enthusiasm for my work gave me encouragement when I needed it!

, October 2016

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