Maria D'Marco

Maria D'Marco – Editor

Insightful, inspiring Developmental Editor of 25+ years specializing in Historical fiction, Self-Help, Spec fiction. Tailored-to-you edits.

Overview

I am a professional book editor of nearly tree decades specializing in Developmental & Line edits.


I thoroughly enjoy the challenges of developmental editing and working with raw first drafts, manuscripts that have survived beta reader feedback or writing group 'skirmishes' or have been retrieved from the depths of a desk drawer. Whether freshly written or from a past where the author was someone else, a developmental edit pinpoints that nagging feeling that something is 'missing' from the manuscript in question.


From 1st-book authors to published pros, I provide insightful support that reveals and explains the issues that weaken their material. My author cohorts and I search for the best possible iteration of their story, often broadening the reach of the message and sharpening cliff edges and conflicts. Creating the smooth, unfettered pathway from mind to 'page' demands courage, a confident pen, and the trust in one's ability to craft a story with clarity. I strive to be the net beneath every author who walks the high wire of balancing vision and action to keep moving forward.


Editing is my profession but writing is my passion, and I hold the belief that having the soul of a writer allows me to envision and experience each author's story through the passion they have poured into it. I view every author and their manuscript as unique. This view demands that I recommend editing services unique to each manuscript with benefits tailored to the specific needs or specific stage of the manuscript.


I am a firm believer that story construction, character evolution, productive scenes, sterling dialogue, and dynamic conflict, operating within an engrossing environment, are all necessary for great story-telling. And even a rough draft, with all these elements yet bereft of perfect grammar, will deeply engage any reader.


As a progressive editor who has observed the rapidly mutating world of publishing for years, I regularly check the pulse of current writer/author conundrums (including the latest scams), acquire new agent listings, keep up with contemporary publishing standards and trends, as well as follow and comment on top-ranked writing blogs.


I have enjoyed many wonderful editing experiences on Reedsy supporting first-book and previously published authors. Whatever author situation, my approach and intent is honesty, kindness, and bringing the material to a greater iteration of the original by enlightening author perceptions and abilities to communicate their story.


My edit interactions with authors do not stop at the completion of an edit or assessment. I remain available for gratis consults to clarify my notes , as I believe an author cannot best utilize my guidance if they are unsure of my meaning. Ours is a shared creative experience, so we will work through any concerns or questions. I'm here for you.


As an extension of every author's journey to publication, I can review book queries and proposals, synopses and cover blurbs.


Want to be certain of your story and your concept? Reach out and we'll cross the bridges together.

Services
Fiction
Cozy Mysteries Dystopian Historical Fiction Post-Apocalyptic Psychological Thriller
Non-Fiction
Philosophy Psychology Self-Help & Self-Improvement
Languages
English (UK) English (US)
Certifications
  • Copy Editing I, II (EFA)
  • Master Writers I & II (John Yeoman)

Work experience

Self-employed

Jan, 1993 — Present

Perform all levels of manuscript edits, from in-depth developmental edits and comprehensive line edits to insightful, 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 to blocking out a first draft, and beyond.

Ghost-editing support from rough draft through final polish.

Portfolio

Inside Voices

Davis, Sarah

Developmental Editing Copy Editing
Tell Me The Truth

Heilgendorff, Felicia

Developmental Editing Copy Editing
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 o... read more
Copy Editing Editorial Assessment
Developmental Editing Copy Editing
Priors

Francis Verlaine

Joe Iocca, an undistinguished veteran P.I., hadn’t seen a new client walk through his doors in several months. So when his former clients start appearing, asking him to solve their cases as if... read more
Developmental Editing
Developmental Editing Copy Editing Query Letter Review
Developmental Editing Copy Editing
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.... read more
Editorial Assessment
Copy Editing Editorial Assessment
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 ... read more
Copy Editing
Vito Catana stood at the helm of his Spanish galleon, Lady Morgan. He prayed that he and the Lady would remain steadfast in the face of what lay ahead, for he was fooling with history, and his... read more
Editorial Assessment
Lord (1)

Dimitrios Molfetas

This novel is an epic, spine-chilling portrait of a vigilante, who calls himself Traveler.Lord, a young, tall, and handsome professor of physics in Los Angeles, California, having psychotic te... read more
Developmental Editing Copy Editing
Scott Johnson had always taken the easy path no matter who he hurt along the way. That is, until he was mistakenly targeted as a donor by the Good Works church and asked to assist in a world-c... read more
Developmental Editing Copy Editing
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 ha... read more
Copy Editing
You don’t need another advice book. You need a PLAN to create a life you’ll love!You deserve to live your happiest life. To create a life you love, you'll need more than clichés and vague advi... read more
Copy Editing Editorial Assessment
The Resilience Way is a book for people who want to overcome their struggles and challenges and build the life they truly desire. In this approachable and engaging book, author Kelly Ann McKni... read more
Developmental Editing
MOVE! is written specifically for people who need to systematically re-orient their life. When we feel stuck, hopeless, overwhelmed, or in need of clarity, we need to move. For those facing to... read more
Copy Editing Editorial Assessment
Puzzle Pieces

Tom Bickimer

Just when Big Jake Sujac had it made, 9/11 rocks his carefully constructed life. His story begins seven decades earlier in the Croatian neighborhood of Sunflower Hill. The Great Depression and... read more
Developmental Editing Copy Editing
When a brilliant psychopath terrorizes the innocent, an untried hero is their only hope.Alice was never one to back down from a fight. So, when her beloved aunt is brutally murdered, she vows ... read more
Copy Editing Editorial Assessment
He fights crime. She was born into it. When the city’s in danger, superheroes can come from both sides of the law. Marco has abandoned his superhero duties to search for an antidote for his fr... read more
Developmental Editing Copy Editing
She's the hero the world needs, and she's training for the rematch of her life…Alice is out for revenge. After narrowly escaping death at the hands of her nemesis, she spends her days living u... read more
Copy Editing Editorial Assessment
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 existen... read more
Editorial Assessment
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 commu... read more
Developmental Editing Copy Editing
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, ... read more
Copy Editing Editorial Assessment
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 h... read more
Copy Editing
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, thr... read more
Editorial Assessment
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 contribut... read more
Copy Editing
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... read more
Editorial Assessment
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 ma... read more
Copy Editing Editorial Assessment
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, Deffo... read more
Copy Editing
'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. Havi... read more
Editorial Assessment
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 rea... read more
Copy Editing
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. Th... read more
Copy Editing
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 ... read more
Copy Editing Editorial Assessment
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, an... read more
Developmental Editing
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... read more
Copy Editing Editorial Assessment

Maria has 61 reviews

Professionalism

Quality

Value

Responsiveness

Gerald B.

Gerald B.

Sep, 2023

Pinned
This was my second time working with Maria and both times were wonderful experiences for me. She helped me transform my manuscript into a strong and compelling story and I feel like a more adept writer after working with her. I definitely recommend working with her. Thanks, Maria!
Maria D.
Thank you for the kind words, Gerald. You were such a delight to work with -- and your dedication to raising the quality of your writing and reaching readers was inspiring. I would be happy to wor...
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Pamela S.

Pamela S.

Aug, 2023

Pinned
Maria's input is turning my disjointed thoughts into a cohesive whole that I believe will make an excellent non-fiction book. Her comments are straight forward, easy to understand, and get right to the heart of the matter. I'm so grateful for her insights, expertise, and professionalism. I have more books to come and look forward to collaborating with her again.
Maria D.
Pamela has written a unique book in a field littered with like-kind books -- yet her voice and vision rise above the ordinary. This is a self-help genre book that manages to avoid any hint of victi...
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Debra F.

Debra F.

Feb, 2023

Pinned
This was my first experience with Reedsy and I am thrilled with the results! Maria far exceeded my expectations. She understood my vision and her guidance has been invaluable. I had planned to consider other editors for my next novel, but I won't be doing that. I'll be using Mariafor as long as she is willing to work with me.
Maria D.
Debra has been a lovely author to work with, confident (though she would likely refuse that description) and prepared to take action and apply guidance given, her drive to produce finely curated ma...
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James P.

James P.

Jun, 2024

Hello, I have not had time to review the material Maria wrote. On 22 May a tornado hit our house; power was out for three days; we were scheduled to go to Tennessee to see our great grandchildren on the24th; during the trip my 80 year old wife fell and severely sprained her left knee and ankle; she became ill on the trip back; and she was hospitalized with pneumonia in both lungs. She was jus...
Read more
Maria D.
Oh no, James! What a terrible ordeal for you and your wife! There is no rush at all to provide your thoughts on our collaboration -- please just take care of yourself and your loved one, and may ...
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Paul C.

Paul C.

May, 2024

Maria is highly experienced, professional, and very easy to deal with. She has strong communication skills and immediately understood what I wanted from the collaboration.

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