Sally Apokedak

Sally Apokedak – Editor

Literary agent specializing in children's lit. I edit and sell General Market (big NY houses) and Christian Market (Tyndale, etc.) books.

Overview

I'm an agent, publisher, and freelance editor with over 20 years experience in General Market children's books, and in books for all ages in the Christian market. Books I've edited have won major awards and one series has sold over a million copies.

If you are writing novels, I can help you


1) find a vibrant voice that will make your books sing

2) build rich story worlds that will draw readers in and hold them captive

3) create active characters your readers will love (even long after they finish reading)

4) plan and execute twisting plots that will surprise and delight your readers

5) weave in meaningful themes so your readers will finish your books with a satisfied sigh.


I also have tons of experience editing board books and picture books. With these I can help you with plot (or concept), character development, voice (rhyme and meter and words that wow!), page turns (pace), and theme.

And, after reading tens of thousands of query letters, I can tell you very quickly if your query letter is going wrong and help you shape a letter that will grab an agent or editor's interest and make them flip to the manuscript and give it a read.

I do work on adult nonfiction and novels, but my first love is the children's market. Great children’s books entertain and also teach. The best books show children how to love well, cherish beauty, and think deeply; and they give children the courage to live heroic lives. With every edit I do, I strive to help authors write and publish books that are excellently crafted--books that will entertain children and also encourage them to live large.

Services
Non-Fiction
Children’s Non-Fiction Christian Non-Fiction
Fiction
Christian Fiction Fantasy Middle Grade Picture Books Young Adult Fantasy
Languages
English (US)
Awards
  • SCBWI WIP grant 2008
  • ECPA bestselling books over a hundred times
  • Edgar nomination
  • Realm Award Debut Winner
  • Foundations Scholarship
  • ACFW Genesis Spec-fic Winner
  • ACFW Genesis YA finalist
  • Sunshine State Young Readers Award
  • Georgia Children's Book Award nomination
  • Christian Book of the Year nomination
  • YAYOMG! Award
  • Creative Child Preferred Choice Award
  • Realm Award Book of the Year Finalist
  • Realm Award YA Finalist

Work experience

Self-employed

Mar, 2017 — Present

A boutique publishing company with an eclectic list, including YA fantasy, MG poetry, picture books, novels, and even nonfiction.

Udemy

Dec, 2015 — Present

I have four writing courses up on Udemy that cover Voice, Plot, Punctuation, and Query Letters. I have over 7000 students enrolled who live in over 90 countries.

Self-employed

Sep, 2012 — Present

Specializing in children's books, I have a select few authors, including the award-winning and best-selling Hannah C. Hall and Taryn Souders.

Self-employed

Sep, 2001 — Present

--I’ve done editorial assessments for SCBWI conferences for years. I'm honest, but I've never made a writer cry. I point out where the writer excels, as well as areas needing improvement.

--In developmental edits I focus on story world, character, plot, pace, and theme. These all work to pull readers in, keep pages turning, and provide satisfying endings.

--In copy edits, I focus on voice. I look for places to use figures of speech, I consider how words sound, and I look at pacing and description.

--I’ve gotten tens of thousands of queries. I can help you write a strong query letter.

--When editing picture books, I look all of the above—character, plot (or structure in concept books and nonfiction), voice, theme, pacing (page turns), descriptions, and so on. I also consider what kind of opportunities the author has given the illustrator.

Portfolio

I Pray You'll Be . . .

Hall, Hannah C.

Developmental Editing Copy Editing Proofreading Query Letter Review
Coop Knows the Scoop

Souders, Taryn

Developmental Editing Copy Editing Proofreading Query Letter Review
Feelings Bouquet

Yordy, Janine

Developmental Editing Copy Editing Proofreading
Copy Editing Query Letter Review
Penguin & Moose

Hall, Hannah C.

Copy Editing Query Letter Review
The Button Girl

Apokedak, Sally

Developmental Editing
Hamburger Harriet Won't Settle

Gomez, AnnA

Paraklesis Press

Developmental Editing Copy Editing Proofreading
Copy Editing
Made with Reedsy
The Big Birthday for Blue Whale

Hlavaty, Jane

Copy Editing
Made with Reedsy
Benefelence the Elephence and the Wonderful You

William, Todd H.

Copy Editing
Developmental Editing Copy Editing
Made with Reedsy
Lotti and the Impossible Dream

Froh, Charly

Developmental Editing Copy Editing
Developmental Editing Copy Editing
Developmental Editing Copy Editing
Developmental Editing Copy Editing
Made with Reedsy
Lotti and the Big Dream

Froh, Charly

Copy Editing
Made with Reedsy
Ellie The Crop Duster Saves The Farm

Victor, Rebecca

Developmental Editing Copy Editing
Developmental Editing
Developmental Editing Copy Editing
The Healer's Rune

Matuska , Lauricia

Developmental Editing Copy Editing
Book Coaching
Book Coaching
Developmental Editing Copy Editing Query Letter Review
Copy Editing Query Letter Review
Grandpa Love

Hall, Hannah C.

Developmental Editing Query Letter Review
Query Letter Review
Query Letter Review
Query Letter Review
Query Letter Review
Grandma Hugs

Hall, Hannah C.

Developmental Editing Query Letter Review
Mommy Cuddles

Hannah C. Hall

Developmental Editing Query Letter Review
Daddy Snuggles

Hannah C. Hall

Developmental Editing Query Letter Review
Query Letter Review
Query Letter Review
Query Letter Review
Query Letter Review
Query Letter Review
Query Letter Review
Developmental Editing Copy Editing Proofreading Query Letter Review
Jelly Bean Summer

Magnin, Joyce

Developmental Editing Copy Editing Proofreading Query Letter Review
That's What Love Is

Hall, Hannah C.

Copy Editing
Query Letter Review
Copy Editing Query Letter Review
Query Letter Review
Query Letter Review
Copy Editing
Developmental Editing Copy Editing Proofreading
Developmental Editing Copy Editing Proofreading
Developmental Editing Copy Editing Proofreading Query Letter Review

Sally has 229 reviews

Professionalism

Quality

Value

Responsiveness

Raluca S.

Raluca S.

Mar, 2024

Pinned
I love working with Sally. This is my third collaboration (maybe fourth) with her. Every time I am in a conundrum with a story, I reach out to Sally because I know she will give me straight answers and propose meaningful improvements. Also, an aspect that I find useful is her perspective on the piece's marketability. Of course, she does not discourage, but Sally is well connected and has the pu...
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Bonny O.

Bonny O.

Feb, 2024

Pinned
Sally is invaluable to my process. She has gone above and beyond to help me develop my story for my intended audience as well as taking time to discuss marketing strategies and other questions that I've had regarding both the book content as well as publishing process. She's thorough and direct while also being kind. Her knowledge and contacts of the publishing world in the US and abroad are su...
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Toni W.

Toni W.

Aug, 2023

Pinned
Sally was wonderful to work with. She kindly challenged me to see the lines in my book in a different way and helped me find wording and ideas to improve the work. She's very good with helping to match meter and rhythm, and offered excellent ideas for the story line to be better developed. I was very, very pleased with her edits, both developmental and copy, and will definitely plan to reque...
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Jon A.

Jon A.

Jun, 2024

Very professional and fast edit. Thank you.
Elaine O.

Elaine O.

Jun, 2024

I had the pleasure of working with Sally on my manuscript, and I couldn't be more impressed with her contributions. Her keen eye for detail and creative suggestions truly elevated my work to the next level. Sally's guidance throughout the process was extremely helpful. She provided insightful feedback that helped shape and refine my narrative, making it stronger and more engaging. Her professi...
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