Sophia Blackwell

Sophia Blackwell - Editor

London, England, UK

Editor of books published by Penguin, Bloomsbury, Oxford, Duke and more. 12+ years’ experience. Author, published by Bloomsbury. LGBT+.

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I've been working in publishing for almost 20 years, and freelance editing for over twelve. I'm an experienced editor of fiction and non-fiction whose projects include books from Penguin, Bloomsbury, Oxford University Press, Duke University Press, Pearson, Zed Books and Unbound. I help self-published authors find their voices and create a final book they can be proud of. I am also a writer published by Bloomsbury and have been nominated for the Polari Prize. Highlights of my editing work include:

- The Good Ancestor by Roman Krznaric, Penguin
- The Writers' and Artists' Yearbook (5+ years on the staff)
- Two books in the Sun, Moon and Stars romance series by Frances M. Thompson
- Two books on music by Geoff Baker from Duke University Press and Oxford University Press
- Three books in the Writers' and Artists' series: Publishing for Children and YA, Self-Publishing and Getting Published

For every manuscript I work on, I provide ALL of the following:

- Copy-editing and line editing (identifying typos and other errors and correcting them)
- Developmental editing and structural editing, including a 4-5-page editorial assessment Word document
- Suggestions on next steps including which agents you might approach, and/or marketing and publicity for either self-published or traditionally published books
- One Zoom session to discuss and clarify feedback
- The opportunity to reach out to me again to discuss specific questions about the project within two years of the job's completion and at no extra cost

Not all of these may be needed by the client as each job is bespoke. However, they are all included in any quote I send for a full-length work (50k words+).

My clients say:

'Sophia is undoubtedly one of the most skilled editors I have worked with over the past decade. She's extremely insightful in relation to structure, content and style, as well as being an eagle-eyed copy editor.'

'We've worked together on multiple fiction and non-fiction projects for the major UK and international publishers and each time she has performed wonders with the manuscript. Sophia is also one of the most efficient editors I know - the job is always done on time and to the highest standards.'

I specialise in own-voices editing for LGBTQ+ authors and characters, and my other specialities include romantic novels, 'chick-lit', sociology, philosophy, music, history and popular culture. I also have significant experience in marketing and publicity, and some experience of production, that will help me advise you on next steps.
English (UK)
Biographies & Memoirs
LGBTQ Non-Fiction
Writing & Publishing
Chick Lit
Contemporary Romance
LGBTQ Fiction
Romantic Comedy


  • Content Marketing Foundations, LinkedIn
  • SEO Foundations, LinkedIn
  • Managing Publishing Strategy, The Publishing Training Centre
  • The Digital Publisher, The Publishing Training Centre


  • Spread The Word LGBT Hero, 2017
  • Literary Death Match champion, 2012
  • Polari Prize Nominee, 2019
  • LGBT Awards Nominee, 2017
  • Polari Prize Judge, 2022

Work experience

Editor, copy-editor and proofreader

March, 2010 – Present (almost 13 years)

I am a freelance editor, copy-editor and proofreader and have worked on books from the UK’s top publishers. I specialise in non-fiction and academic publishing (secondary to higher education) but have also worked on fiction and, as an author and creative writing tutor, can understand my clients and help them refine their work to give them the best chance of successful publication.

Marketing Manager (in-house)

Macmillan, Bloomsbury, Hachette UK (Hodder)
September, 2008 – Present (over 14 years)

I have worked on marketing and publicity for academic, educational, trade and professional publishers for the bulk of my career, with stints on magazines and working for media agencies. With this background, I can also advise on press releases, web presence and help authors plan events for new books.

Portfolio (20 selected works)

What If the Queen Should Die?

Flintoff, John-Paul

Writers' & Artists' Yearbook 2020 (Writers' and Artists')

Bloomsbury Publishing, Owen, Alysoun, Harrington, Eden Phillips

After My Own Heart

Blackwell, Sophia

Face Up to Climate Change: Demand change now

McManners, Peter, McManners, Thomas

Boys & Girls

Burston, Paul

Men & Women (Shorts)

Burston, Paul

Sophia has 9 reviews

Communication & Punctuality
Communication & Punctuality

José Camero
Sophie was extremely professional and very helpful with her insights. I feel her input brought my work to a level I can be very happy with.

José Camero, January 2023

Samantha Valentine
I feel very lucky that I came across Sophia’s editing services when I was looking for a London editor for my novel. She was responsive with my initial enquires and patient with my changing timelines. When I requested some feedback at very short notice for a competition entry, she was incredibly helpful and gave me some useful insights that I was able to incorporate into my manuscript for the su...
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Samantha Valentine, January 2023

Sophia Blackwell
I hope I am too! It was a pleasure working with you and thank you for the lovely review.

Reply from Sophia Blackwell

Danny Silva
Sophia Blackwell's editing made immediate improvements to my writing. The process was seamless, and timely. Sophia is both a creative and pragmatic editor, making important changes and strong suggestions in places where text has been left in tact. Sophia understood my project, found my voice, and helped develop the theme and flow of my writing. Thank you!

Danny Silva, October 2022

Frances M. Thompson
My second time working with Sophia and it was even better than our first collaboration! Great attention to detail, really focused on the goals I wanted to achieve and perfect communication and professionalism. Thank you, Sophia!

Frances M. Thompson, September 2022

Sophia Blackwell
Thank you! I'm glad you enjoyed it as much as I did, Frances.

Reply from Sophia Blackwell

Frances M. Thompson
Sophie was professional, responsive and very thorough in both our communication and the way her edits were conducted. She understood the brief perfectly and was able to achieve exactly what I wanted (tighter prose, reducing words, identifying other sections that could be deleted or edited). At the end of her work, Sophie delivered two different versions of my MS, and a reader's report that I fo...
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Frances M. Thompson, May 2022

Sophia Blackwell
Thank you for this fantastic review! The pleasure was all mine and I hope to work with you again in future too.

Reply from Sophia Blackwell

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