Shannon Cave

Shannon Cave - Editor

Seattle, WA, USA

Experienced, encouraging developmental + copy editor to help you get one step closer to your publishing goals. Loves romance and mystery!

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My mission is to help writers bring clarity to their manuscripts and make their work shine through detailed, insightful, and encouraging editing, while keeping true to their unique voices and remembering the reader on the other end.

"Shannon is AMAZING. From the very first contact to when she sent me her edits, she’s been a dream to work with. She went above and beyond to help me take my book to the next level. I found her edits and notes to be 100% on point, and more than once I said 'That’s it! That’s what I was missing.'” - Amy M.

Are you a writer who feels confused about your storyline and you just can’t look at it ONE. MORE. TIME? Or maybe you’re confident about the story, but know that grammar and punctuation aren’t your strength? Or are you looking for a new team member to support your writing career and to help you take things to the next level? If any of these are true, we may be the perfect fit!

As a traditionally published author in the romance genre, I know what it’s like to be an unsure new writer, as well as an experienced writer trying to up my game with each new book. Thanks to that experience, I can relate to my authors from a point of view of having "been there, done that." Additionally, I’ve worked with New York Times and USA Today Bestselling authors, as well as debut authors, both traditionally and self-published.

Whether you’re prepping for submission to agents or New York editors, or want to self-publish your book, I can help! My experience and eye for character and story issues can help you organize your story better, making sure you’re hitting all the plot points, and that your characters are consistent and believable. My eye for detail can help rid your manuscript of spelling errors, clarity issues, funky grammar, and typos (like the copy editor who saved one of my characters from receiving a “bouquet of floors.” Yikes!). My #1 goal is to make YOUR book the best it can be!

Here's what you’ll get from me:

* Honest but gentle feedback in my edits or evaluations. I love to point out the passages I enjoy as much as I do those that might need more work! Every reader needs encouragement! But I won’t BS you with fake praise either. If something is confusing to me as a reader of your book, it’s likely to be confusing to your future readers, too, and I’ll be sure to give you the opportunity to fix it.

* Respectful treatment of your work. I’m thorough, and I ask questions where clarity is needed, rather than just assuming. It is your work, your words!

* I work in Microsoft Word, using Track Changes for in-line editing. You’ll get lots of comments, with questions and suggestions. I’ll send you the marked-up copy upon completion, and you’ll always have the right of refusal if anything doesn’t fit your vision for your book!

* A Style Sheet of facts, names, locations, timeline tracking, etc. Anything that needs consistency will be tracked on the Style Sheet and provided to you at completion of the project. HINT: Bonus points if you can provide me with a Style Sheet that YOU kept during your writing process!

* If our project is an editorial assessment/manuscript evaluation (a super in-depth critique) or developmental edit (a deeper, more thorough edit, including in-line editing, along with higher-level story editing), you’ll get an editorial letter outlining any issues with the story that may need work.

* Prior to editing, we’ll talk about your vision and goals for your book, as well as anything you might see as weaknesses that I can keep an eye out for. It’s all about teamwork!

Whatever your needs are, don’t hesitate to ask. And, if you’re not exactly sure WHAT your needs are, let’s talk about it! I can help you determine what your next step might be and how to best go about it.

Hiring an editor is a big investment in your writing career, and I’ll do whatever I can to ensure it’s the best investment you ever make!

"Shannon's editing skills are spot on and her suggestions always make my writing better. As both a traditionally and independently published author, it's such a relief to have people I can count on who understand the business." - Teri Brown, author of Born of Illusion Series (Balzer + Bray)

"Shannon is a wonderful copy editor to work with. She's professional, timely, and easy to work with. More importantly, she can edit without editing out my voice. Her feedback was spot on, and exactly what the manuscript needed." - Erin Fleshman

English (UK)
English (US)
Business & Management
Health & Wellbeing
Contemporary Fiction
Cozy Mysteries
Magical Realism
Thriller & Suspense
Women's Fiction

Work experience

Freelance Copy, Line, and Developmental Editor

October, 2014 – Present (over 8 years)

As a freelance copy editor, I have worked with both newer writers and previously published authors to bring their books to life and get them one step closer to publication. This has included working with established publishing companies, such as Tule Publishing Group, as well as indie authors. I come with the unique perspective of being a traditionally published author in the romance/women's fiction genre. I provide developmental editing, copy editing, and proofreading...all while maintaining each writer's unique voice. My specialties include romance and women's fiction, as well as the mystery genre, but I have also edited extensively in the nonfiction realm, particularly lighter, self-help-leaning healthcare and business-related subjects.

Medical Editor

September, 1991 – February, 2019 (over 27 years)

Medical editor working on healthcare documentation in a variety of specialties for various hospitals throughout the U.S. and Canada.

Portfolio (48 selected works)

Unnatural Causes

T.E. Harkins

Madeline Delarouse always thought growing old would take a lot longer. But when her adult kids move her into an upscale retirement community on the west coast of Florida, she fears her best days are behind her. That is, until her new neighbor is found dead - a golf club stuck in her head. Against the orders of her sarcastic son and exceptionally well-informed daughter, Madeline teams up with a... read more

Madeline Delarouse always thought growing old would take a lot longer. But when her adult kids move her into an upscale retirement community on the west coast of Florida, she fears her best days are behind her. That is, until her new neighbor is found dead - a golf club stuck in her head. Against the orders of her sarcastic son and exceptionally well-informed daughter, Madeline teams up with a... read more

Anonymous Mom Posts

Goldin, Jenifer

Pencil Me In

Wodtke, Christina

Steal My Heart

O'Brian, Aimee


Endriga, Yasmine

Smokejumper Saga

Crues, John

And There You Were

Mazanec, Manda

Among the Shadows

Fiely, Destiney

Alpha Status: A Non-fiction Novel

Crumpton, Nathan Ikon

Beth Bradley 2.0

Ernst, Emma

A Matter of Perspective

Beresford, Thomas

The Maiden & The Unseen

Rune, Alexis, Rose, Jeanette

Shannon has 83 reviews

Communication & Punctuality
Communication & Punctuality

C Gilmani
I can't say enough about Shannon. This is my first literary work, and she went above and beyond to better develop my work by providing explanations behind her edits. Her editorial notes alone were worth every penny. She has helped me to realize that I have a lot of work ahead of me, but all great things. I will be using her again after this first round of edits.

C Gilmani, March 2023

Gregory Newton Brown
Shannon is such a pleasure to work with in every way!

Gregory Newton Brown, March 2023

T.E. Harkins
Shannon is fabulous! This is the third book in a cozy mystery series that she has edited for me and I can't imagine ever working with anyone else! Her attention to detail is unsurpassed and she's amazingly kind. Don't get me wrong, she'll still tell you what you need to fix and improve, but she's a very supportive editorial partner. I really cannot recommend her highly enough!

T.E. Harkins, March 2023

David McClure
Shannon's support and feedback was amazing! She was "spot-on" with her comments, suggestions and corrections. She understood where I was trying to go with this book. She knew it was my first endeavor as a writer and helped me over some hurdles and early mistakes. She was punctual in getting back to me and always answered my often, inexperienced questions. I will highly recommend her to a...
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David McClure, February 2023

Heather Morrison-Tapley
Working with Shannon was wonderful! She was quick to respond to any communication, professional, encouraging, and very reasonably priced. Most of all her work was excellent! She gave detailed and extremely helpful feedback, catching things that I had missed even after having gone over my work many times. She was also very positive which was nice when reading suggested edits. I highly recommend ...
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Heather Morrison-Tapley, February 2023

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