Rhonda Merwarth

Rhonda Merwarth - Editor

Cleveland, OH, USA

Multi-published author and freelance fiction editor, specializing in romance, fantasy, women's fiction, and YA (young adult).

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Overview

Reviews (5)
As an editor, I’ve worked with first-time authors, multi-published authors, and NYT and USA Today bestselling authors. I’ve edited Romance Writers of America RITA® award-winning and nominated romances, and Romantic Times® award-winning and nominated romances, as well as other industry award winners.

I’m a professional, experienced manuscript editor, starting my career at Siren Publishing. I spent over 7 1/2 years as an acquisitions/developmental editor for Harlequin’s digital-first imprint Carina Press. I was also an acquisitions/developmental editor for Hallmark Publishing for a year. I'm currently freelance editing for Hallmark Publishing, Tule Publishing, and authors seeking indie or traditional publishing.
Languages
English (US)
Fiction
Anthologies
Fantasy
LGBTQ (Fiction)
Romance
Science Fiction
Women's Fiction
Young Adult
Mystery & Crime
Cozy Mysteries

Awards

  • 2015 Romance Writers of America RITA award-winning editor
  • 2015 Romance Writers of America RITA award-nominated editor
  • 2017 Romance Writers of America RITA award-nominated editor
  • 2018 Romance Writers of America RITA award-winning editor

Work experience

Owner

Self-employed
February, 2013 – Present (almost 7 years)

Editing (developmental and line), book coaching, query letter and synopsis assistance, and more.

Publishing novels in teen and adult fiction.

Freelance developmental editor

Tule Publishing
March, 2019 – Present (9 months)

Developmental and line editing.

Freelance developmental editor

Hallmark Publishing
September, 2017 – Present (about 2 years)

Developmental and line editing.

Acquisitions and developmental editor

Carina Press (imprint of Harlequin Publishing)
February, 2010 – August, 2017 (over 7 years)

Acquired novels, and developmental and line editing.

Portfolio (25 selected works)

A Heavenly Christmas: Based on the Hallmark Hall of Fame Movie

Rhonda Merwarth

Treat yourself to ebooks inspired by Hallmark Christmas movies. Enjoy a heartwarming, feel-good story…and find out what happens after the movie ends.Eve is a workaholic. Yeah, it may be Christmastime, but she won’t let that distract her from making partner at her financial firm. Even if that means her family and her personal life get pushed to the side…again.Then Eve slips on a patch of icy si... read more

Treat yourself to ebooks inspired by Hallmark Christmas movies. Enjoy a heartwarming, feel-good story…and find out what happens after the movie ends.Eve is a workaholic. Yeah, it may be Christmastime, but she won’t let that distract her from making partner at her financial firm. Even if that means her family and her personal life get pushed to the side…again.Then Eve slips on a patch of icy si... read more

Scratch

Rhonda Helms

The most painful scars are the ones you never see.In her DJ booth at a Cleveland dance club, Casey feels a sense of connection that's the closest she ever gets to normal. On her college campus, she's reserved, practical--all too aware of the disaster that can result when you trust the wrong person. But inexplicably, Daniel refuses to pay attention to the walls she's put up. Like Casey, he's a ... read more

The most painful scars are the ones you never see.In her DJ booth at a Cleveland dance club, Casey feels a sense of connection that's the closest she ever gets to normal. On her college campus, she's reserved, practical--all too aware of the disaster that can result when you trust the wrong person. But inexplicably, Daniel refuses to pay attention to the walls she's put up. Like Casey, he's a ... read more

Sparks in Scotland (Flirt)

A. Destiny, Rhonda Helms

First crush, first love, first kiss—Ava learns about more than her heritage while vacationing in Scotland in this addition to the sweet and clean Flirt series!Ava is going on vacation to Scotland, where she’s supposed to learn more about her Scottish heritage. She’s excited to see the castles, abbeys, and coastal hills—and maybe even catch a glimpse of Nessie herself—but Ava doesn’t expect to ... read more

First crush, first love, first kiss—Ava learns about more than her heritage while vacationing in Scotland in this addition to the sweet and clean Flirt series!Ava is going on vacation to Scotland, where she’s supposed to learn more about her Scottish heritage. She’s excited to see the castles, abbeys, and coastal hills—and maybe even catch a glimpse of Nessie herself—but Ava doesn’t expect to ... read more

Never Too Late (Flirt)

A. Destiny, Rhonda Helms

Can acting in love lead to the real thing? This standalone addition to the Flirt series, now with a new cover, is sweet, fresh, and clean.Abbey couldn’t be more excited. The end of the school year is coming, as is the annual sophomore class renaissance faire…and the headlining theatrical performance, where Abbey will be starring as a lead. There’s only one problem: her costar, Jason Hardy. Eve... read more

Can acting in love lead to the real thing? This standalone addition to the Flirt series, now with a new cover, is sweet, fresh, and clean.Abbey couldn’t be more excited. The end of the school year is coming, as is the annual sophomore class renaissance faire…and the headlining theatrical performance, where Abbey will be starring as a lead. There’s only one problem: her costar, Jason Hardy. Eve... read more

Break Your Heart

Rhonda Helms

Fearless and flirtatious, Megan Porter isn't your typical math major. On the fast track to graduating with honors, a spot in her school's masters program is nearly guaranteed. But her senior year is quickly turned upside-down by her new thesis advisor, cryptography professor Dr. Nick Muramoto. Young, effortlessly good-looking, and intellectual, he's far more intriguing than the immature jocks ... read more

Fearless and flirtatious, Megan Porter isn't your typical math major. On the fast track to graduating with honors, a spot in her school's masters program is nearly guaranteed. But her senior year is quickly turned upside-down by her new thesis advisor, cryptography professor Dr. Nick Muramoto. Young, effortlessly good-looking, and intellectual, he's far more intriguing than the immature jocks ... read more

Portrait of Us (Flirt)

A. Destiny, Rhonda Helms

First crush, first love, first kiss—in this addition to the sweet and clean Flirt series, art may be the common ground between opposites Corinne and Matthew in their summer class.Corinne is looking forward to taking summer classes at a local art studio where a famous artist-in-residence will be teaching. She’s always wanted to focus more on her art, and winning the local competition (and grand... read more

First crush, first love, first kiss—in this addition to the sweet and clean Flirt series, art may be the common ground between opposites Corinne and Matthew in their summer class.Corinne is looking forward to taking summer classes at a local art studio where a famous artist-in-residence will be teaching. She’s always wanted to focus more on her art, and winning the local competition (and grand... read more

Promposal

Rhonda Helms

Prom should be one of the most memorable nights of your life. But for Camilla and Joshua, some elaborate promposals are getting in the way. Will they be able to land their dream dates in time for the dance?Promposal (n.)—an often very public proposal, in which one person asks another person to the prom, eliciting joy or mortification. Camilla can’t help hoping her secret crush, Benjamin, might... read more

Prom should be one of the most memorable nights of your life. But for Camilla and Joshua, some elaborate promposals are getting in the way. Will they be able to land their dream dates in time for the dance?Promposal (n.)—an often very public proposal, in which one person asks another person to the prom, eliciting joy or mortification. Camilla can’t help hoping her secret crush, Benjamin, might... read more

Stupid Cupid

Rhonda Stapleton

Felicity's no ordinary teen matchmaker...she's a cupid!Felicity Walker believes in true love. That's why she applies for a gig at the matchmaking company Cupid's Hollow. But when Felicity gets the job, she learns that she isn't just a matchmaker...she's a cupid! (There's more than one of them, you know.) Armed with a hot pink, tricked-out PDA infused with the latest in cupid magic (love arrows... read more

Felicity's no ordinary teen matchmaker...she's a cupid!Felicity Walker believes in true love. That's why she applies for a gig at the matchmaking company Cupid's Hollow. But when Felicity gets the job, she learns that she isn't just a matchmaker...she's a cupid! (There's more than one of them, you know.) Armed with a hot pink, tricked-out PDA infused with the latest in cupid magic (love arrows... read more

Flirting with Disaster

Rhonda Stapleton

Felicity is a total romantic. That's why she follows her heart--not the rules--in her job as a cupid. But when Felicity turns her matchmaking magic on her best friend, Andy, it's Andy who breaks their golden rule: friends always come first. Andy is so wrapped up in her new guy that she's ditching everyone else. How can Felicity stop her BFF from letting a BF come between them? Meanwhile, Felic... read more

Felicity is a total romantic. That's why she follows her heart--not the rules--in her job as a cupid. But when Felicity turns her matchmaking magic on her best friend, Andy, it's Andy who breaks their golden rule: friends always come first. Andy is so wrapped up in her new guy that she's ditching everyone else. How can Felicity stop her BFF from letting a BF come between them? Meanwhile, Felic... read more

Pucker Up

Rhonda Stapleton

In this irresistably romantic trilogy, Felicity discovers that she's no ordinary teen matchmaker...she's a cupid! Felicity can't believe her luck. Her longtime crush is now officially her boyfriend, and just in time for prom. Felicity isn't just smitten with Derek, she's head-over-heels in love. So when she learns that her boss at Cupid's Hollow used cupid magic to make Derek fall for her, Fel... read more

In this irresistably romantic trilogy, Felicity discovers that she's no ordinary teen matchmaker...she's a cupid! Felicity can't believe her luck. Her longtime crush is now officially her boyfriend, and just in time for prom. Felicity isn't just smitten with Derek, she's head-over-heels in love. So when she learns that her boss at Cupid's Hollow used cupid magic to make Derek fall for her, Fel... read more

Struck: Stupid Cupid; Flirting with Disaster; Pucker Up

Rhonda Stapleton

Felicity Walker believes in true love. That’s why she applies for a gig at the matchmaking company Cupid’s Hollow. But when Felicity gets the job, she learns that she isn’t just a matchmaker...she’s a cupid! (There’s more than one of them, you know.) Armed with a hot pink, tricked-out PDA infused with the latest in cupid magic (love arrows shot through email), Felicity works to meet her quota ... read more

Felicity Walker believes in true love. That’s why she applies for a gig at the matchmaking company Cupid’s Hollow. But when Felicity gets the job, she learns that she isn’t just a matchmaker...she’s a cupid! (There’s more than one of them, you know.) Armed with a hot pink, tricked-out PDA infused with the latest in cupid magic (love arrows shot through email), Felicity works to meet her quota ... read more

Falling Hard (The Blackhawk Boys Book 4)

Lexi Ryan

A Romance Writers of America® 2018 RITA® award winner!An NFL player with a secret past, and the one woman with the power to turn his world inside out…“A sexy, sweet, oh-so-emotional second chance romance that will make you believe in the power of fate and forgiveness.” -USA Today Bestseller Lili ValenteFormer actress Emma Rothschild is partying in Vegas in disguise. But I’m not fooled. Five ye... read more

A Romance Writers of America® 2018 RITA® award winner!An NFL player with a secret past, and the one woman with the power to turn his world inside out…“A sexy, sweet, oh-so-emotional second chance romance that will make you believe in the power of fate and forgiveness.” -USA Today Bestseller Lili ValenteFormer actress Emma Rothschild is partying in Vegas in disguise. But I’m not fooled. Five ye... read more

Bonds of Trust: Book One of Wicked Play: A BDSM erotic romance

Lynda Aicher

After ending her passionless marriage, Cali Reynolds is eager to live out her forbidden fantasies. Her first step is attending new members' night at The Den, the most exclusive sex club in town. Perhaps here she can find a man who understands her desire to be dominated...At first, Jake McCallister thinks Cali has come to his club for the wrong reasons. But when he discovers she is seeking fulf... read more

After ending her passionless marriage, Cali Reynolds is eager to live out her forbidden fantasies. Her first step is attending new members' night at The Den, the most exclusive sex club in town. Perhaps here she can find a man who understands her desire to be dominated...At first, Jake McCallister thinks Cali has come to his club for the wrong reasons. But when he discovers she is seeking fulf... read more

Countdown to Zero Hour (Black Ops: Automatik)

Nico Rosso

Fans of Maya Banks's KGI series will love this explosive new romantic suspense series from Nico Rosso, featuring black ops agents and the women they'll do anything to protectFormer Special Forces agent Artem "Art" Diaz is tattooed, muscular and undeniably dangerous. He's also deep undercover, posing as mob muscle for a deadly bratva boss. His mission: gain the Russians' trust. Then lead the st... read more

Fans of Maya Banks's KGI series will love this explosive new romantic suspense series from Nico Rosso, featuring black ops agents and the women they'll do anything to protectFormer Special Forces agent Artem "Art" Diaz is tattooed, muscular and undeniably dangerous. He's also deep undercover, posing as mob muscle for a deadly bratva boss. His mission: gain the Russians' trust. Then lead the st... read more

Pretty Broken Series Box Set: (Books 1-9)

Jeana E. Mann

“The chemistry between the main characters jumps off the pages and brings you along for the ride. Couldn't put it down. Do yourself a favor and get this book.” — Reviewer of Pretty Dirty SecretsThese alpha billionaires, bad boys, and bachelors will break your heart and win your love.Nine interconnected romances from bestselling, award-winning author Jeana E. Mann. Join the Seaforth family and ... read more

“The chemistry between the main characters jumps off the pages and brings you along for the ride. Couldn't put it down. Do yourself a favor and get this book.” — Reviewer of Pretty Dirty SecretsThese alpha billionaires, bad boys, and bachelors will break your heart and win your love.Nine interconnected romances from bestselling, award-winning author Jeana E. Mann. Join the Seaforth family and ... read more

Christmas In Evergreen: Based on the Hallmark Channel Original Movie

Nancy Naigle

A snowy small town.A snow globe that grants wishes.A love that’s meant to be.Evergreen, Vermont is about to be in the rearview mirror of Allie Shaw’s vintage red pickup truck. It’s hard to say goodbye to her small town and her veterinarian practice, but she’s moving to Washington D.C., where her big-city-loving boyfriend lives.Ever since Ryan Bellamy’s wife died, he hardly knows how to celebra... read more

A snowy small town.A snow globe that grants wishes.A love that’s meant to be.Evergreen, Vermont is about to be in the rearview mirror of Allie Shaw’s vintage red pickup truck. It’s hard to say goodbye to her small town and her veterinarian practice, but she’s moving to Washington D.C., where her big-city-loving boyfriend lives.Ever since Ryan Bellamy’s wife died, he hardly knows how to celebra... read more

Sunrise Cabin

Stacey Donovan

"...a warm-hearted, tender story about characters you will love to meet and a setting you won’t want to leave. I thoroughly enjoyed my visit to Sunrise Cabin!" --RaeAnne Thayne, New York Times bestselling authorTwo very different people… One very special place. Dylan’s an overworked investment banker. Paige is a free-spirited first-grade teacher. From the first time they meet, these two opposi... read more

"...a warm-hearted, tender story about characters you will love to meet and a setting you won’t want to leave. I thoroughly enjoyed my visit to Sunrise Cabin!" --RaeAnne Thayne, New York Times bestselling authorTwo very different people… One very special place. Dylan’s an overworked investment banker. Paige is a free-spirited first-grade teacher. From the first time they meet, these two opposi... read more

His Road Home

Anna Richland

Winner of Romance Writers of America's 2015 RITA® Award for Best Romance Novella "Richland packs a novel's worth of plot and characterization into this tantalizing novella. " —Publishers Weekly, starred review Special Forces medic Rey Cruz needs to find a fiancée, fast, or he'll end up in a marriage orchestrated by an Afghan warlord. Finding a picture online of a girl he barely knew back home,... read more

Winner of Romance Writers of America's 2015 RITA® Award for Best Romance Novella "Richland packs a novel's worth of plot and characterization into this tantalizing novella. " —Publishers Weekly, starred review Special Forces medic Rey Cruz needs to find a fiancée, fast, or he'll end up in a marriage orchestrated by an Afghan warlord. Finding a picture online of a girl he barely knew back home,... read more

Radio Silence (Off the Grid Book 1)

Alyssa Cole

“Cole’s first Off the Grid novel offers a startling, believable post-apocalyptic world that is rich in atmospheric details and rife with unexpected dangers. Her refreshingly diverse cast of characters possess strong, sympathetic and magnetic personalities, ensuring that readers will be engaged with each step of their journey.” – RT Book ReviewsNo one expects the apocalypse.Arden Highmore was l... read more

“Cole’s first Off the Grid novel offers a startling, believable post-apocalyptic world that is rich in atmospheric details and rife with unexpected dangers. Her refreshingly diverse cast of characters possess strong, sympathetic and magnetic personalities, ensuring that readers will be engaged with each step of their journey.” – RT Book ReviewsNo one expects the apocalypse.Arden Highmore was l... read more

Making the First Move (Bad Boys Gone Good Book 1)

Reese Ryan

Big promotion, complete with $300 pen? Check.A hot man who cuddles, spends the night and makes breakfast? Check.Waiting for the other shoe to fall? Check."If it feels too good to be true, it probably is."Five years of obsessing over her career pays off when Melanie Gordon gets a promotion that could make or break her. But the new job takes her back to her hometown to face the family she's dist... read more

Big promotion, complete with $300 pen? Check.A hot man who cuddles, spends the night and makes breakfast? Check.Waiting for the other shoe to fall? Check."If it feels too good to be true, it probably is."Five years of obsessing over her career pays off when Melanie Gordon gets a promotion that could make or break her. But the new job takes her back to her hometown to face the family she's dist... read more

Sharing Hailey (Lovers and Friends Book 1)

Samantha Ann King

Hailey Anderson's deep, dark secret? She's been madly in lust with her overprotective brother's two best friends for years. Gorgeous woodworking artist Mark Allen and sexy doctor Tony Adamo have no idea they star in her fantasies every night.After a nasty breakup with her abusive boyfriend, Hailey's looking for a little distance. Headed for a two-week Hawaiian vacation with her brother and his... read more

Hailey Anderson's deep, dark secret? She's been madly in lust with her overprotective brother's two best friends for years. Gorgeous woodworking artist Mark Allen and sexy doctor Tony Adamo have no idea they star in her fantasies every night.After a nasty breakup with her abusive boyfriend, Hailey's looking for a little distance. Headed for a two-week Hawaiian vacation with her brother and his... read more

To Catch a Stolen Soul: A Humorous Urban Fantasy Novel (Djinn Haven)

R.L. Naquin

Fans of the Monster Haven series by R.L. Naquin will love this beguiling spin-off, featuring a trapped djinn caught in a hot mess of lost souls, fast food and otherwordly murder. Kam is a soul chaser for the Hidden Government, a much harder job now that the Hidden look like everyone else. Broke, out of magic and sick of playing waitress in a pirate-themed dive bar, Kam jumps at a chance for an... read more

Fans of the Monster Haven series by R.L. Naquin will love this beguiling spin-off, featuring a trapped djinn caught in a hot mess of lost souls, fast food and otherwordly murder. Kam is a soul chaser for the Hidden Government, a much harder job now that the Hidden look like everyone else. Broke, out of magic and sick of playing waitress in a pirate-themed dive bar, Kam jumps at a chance for an... read more

Drynn (Last of the Shardyn, #1)

Steve Vera

Book one of Last of the ShardynMontana police chief Skip Walkins is hot on the trail of a murder suspect when he witnesses a drifter free the Lord of the Underworld. Seventeen years ago, five knights from Earth's magical twin, Theia, entombed Asmodeous the Pale, Lord of the Drynn, in Skip's town. Now that the dark god is free again, he's anxious to get back home and finish the war he began…to ... read more

Book one of Last of the ShardynMontana police chief Skip Walkins is hot on the trail of a murder suspect when he witnesses a drifter free the Lord of the Underworld. Seventeen years ago, five knights from Earth's magical twin, Theia, entombed Asmodeous the Pale, Lord of the Drynn, in Skip's town. Now that the dark god is free again, he's anxious to get back home and finish the war he began…to ... read more

What Binds Us

Larry Benjamin

Thomas-Edward is only a teenager when he escapes his working-class neighborhood. He's ready for anything—except the arrival of Donovan Whyte in his life. Sophisticated and dazzlingly handsome, Dondi quickly becomes the center of Thomas-Edward's universe, introducing him to a world full of drama, passion and feuding families.When their relationship fizzles, they remain uneasy friends until Dond... read more

Thomas-Edward is only a teenager when he escapes his working-class neighborhood. He's ready for anything—except the arrival of Donovan Whyte in his life. Sophisticated and dazzlingly handsome, Dondi quickly becomes the center of Thomas-Edward's universe, introducing him to a world full of drama, passion and feuding families.When their relationship fizzles, they remain uneasy friends until Dond... read more

Rulebreaker

Cathy Pegau

Liv Braxton's Felon Rule #1: Don't get emotionally involved. Smash-and-grab thieving doesn't lend itself to getting chummy with the victims, and Liv hasn't met anyone on the mining colony of Nevarro worth knowing, anyway. So it's easy to follow her Rules. Until her ex, Tonio, shows up with an invitation to join him on the job of a lifetime. Until Zia Talbot, the woman she's supposed to deceive... read more

Liv Braxton's Felon Rule #1: Don't get emotionally involved. Smash-and-grab thieving doesn't lend itself to getting chummy with the victims, and Liv hasn't met anyone on the mining colony of Nevarro worth knowing, anyway. So it's easy to follow her Rules. Until her ex, Tonio, shows up with an invitation to join him on the job of a lifetime. Until Zia Talbot, the woman she's supposed to deceive... read more

Rhonda has 5 reviews

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

Tanya Amat
Rhonda has been awesome to work with. She responds quickly and has been really helpful. Will definitely collaborate with her again in future projects.

Tanya Amat, September 2019

Rhonda Merwarth
It was a pleasure working with you, and a lot of fun!! :D

Reply from Rhonda Merwarth


Rahel Baskind
Rhonda was punctual and very thorough with my manuscript. She was also very communicative. Thank you Rhonda!

Rahel Baskind, May 2019


Jaylyn Cairo
Rhonda is great to work with! She always responds to emails promptly and will answer questions no matter how many different ways she has to explain it before it makes sense, lol. She did a fantastic job as an editor for one project and I already have plans to use her services again soon. Super reasonable on price and overall a really cool person in general!

Jaylyn Cairo, December 2018


Beatrice N'Daou
I really loved working with Rhonda! She is personable as well as professional, and worked with me to find the best way to get the help I needed even though it wasn't exactly what I'd originally planned. She is very thoughtful about her work and I gained so much from her feedback. I will definitely work with her again.

Beatrice N'Daou, November 2018


Cynthia Gentry
This was my first time getting help with a query letter, and I can't say enough good things about working with Rhonda. In addition to her deep knowledge of the industry, she responded quickly to my emails and questions, and turned around the edits even earlier than I requested. I definitely recommend her and hope to work with her again!

Cynthia Gentry, October 2018

Rhonda Merwarth
It was great working with you, and I hope to do so again in the future!

Reply from Rhonda Merwarth

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