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Sue Copsey

Sue Copsey - Editor

Auckland, New Zealand

Editor and award-winning children's author, 20+ years in UK and NZ publishing. Ex Dorling Kindersley and Pearson. Meticulous, fun and kind.

Overview

I'm a professional book editor with 20+ years' experience in the UK and NZ publishing industries. I am also an award-winning children's author, both traditionally and self-published. As an editor, I work with both local (NZ) and overseas authors and publishers, and specialise in children's (picture books/MG/JF/non-fiction), YA, non-fiction, and biographies/memoirs. I have also edited sci-fi, fantasy, and crime/thrillers. Free sample edits provided.

Services
Languages
English (AUS) English (NZ) English (UK) English (US)
Fiction
Adventure Children's - Middle Grade Children's Picture Books Fantasy Historical Fiction Science Fiction Young Adult & Teen
Non-Fiction
Biographies & Memoirs Children's Books (Non-Fiction) Travel

Awards

  • Storylines Notable Book Award (2016) for The Ghosts of Tarawera (author and editor)
  • CLNZ award for Best Book or Series in Secondary Publishing, for Life Processes, Ecology and Evolution (Pearson, 2012): Development editor and editor
  • Storylines Notable Book award for Our Children Aotearoa (Pearson, 2011): Development editor, editor, author and photographer

Work experience

Freelance editor and project manager

Sue Copsey is self-employed

August, 2013 – Present (almost 4 years)

I offer a range of services from structural and development editing through to a light copy edit or proofread. I have worked on most genres, and specialise in children's, YA, and non-fiction (adult/children's). I'm passionate about all things bookish, and obsessive when it comes to getting spelling, punctuation, grammar, consistency and clarity right. But I'm kind! If I spot a gaping plot hole or decide your protagonist really wouldn't say that, we'll sort it out together. If I think your book isn't yet ready for editing or publishing, I'll explain why, and we'll take it from there. I love to work with new talent as well as well-established authors, and can also advise on where to next - submit to an agent or publisher? Enter a competition? Self-publish?

Project manager and editor

Pearson

December, 1995 – August, 2013 (over 17 years)

Full-time freelance project manager and editor, working mainly on highly illustrated junior, high school and tertiary education titles.

Senior Editor

Dorling Kindersley (London, UK)

February, 1991 – October, 1995 (over 4 years)

Project editor and senior editor working mainly on children's illustrated non-fiction (7-12s).

Portfolio (27 selected works)

The Bold Ship Phenomenal

Sarah Johnson

A rollicking adventure of bottles, ships, piracy and a pig.Shortlisted for the 2013 Kobo/NZ Authors E-publishing Prize.From the author of the Storylines Joy Cowley Award-winning Wooden Arms.Malachi’s life is dull, dull, dull. Dad’s always busy and school is dreary, especially science.Then Malachi finds a mysterious bottle on the seashore, and things start to get exciting.What he discovers insi... read more

A rollicking adventure of bottles, ships, piracy and a pig.Shortlisted for the 2013 Kobo/NZ Authors E-publishing Prize.From the author of the Storylines Joy Cowley Award-winning Wooden Arms.Malachi’s life is dull, dull, dull. Dad’s always busy and school is dreary, especially science.Then Malachi finds a mysterious bottle on the seashore, and things start to get exciting.What he discovers insi... read more

Under the Himalayan Sky: Establishing Sagarmatha National Park

Margaret Jefferies

Back Cover Text) In the 1970s, the Nepalese government established an agreement with New Zealand for help in setting up a national park in the Mt Everest region of the Himalayas. Bruce Jeff eries, an Assistant Supervising Ranger with New Zealand's National Park Service, took off for Nepal with his wife Margaret, and three young children. Th ey had little idea of what to expect in this remote, ... read more

Back Cover Text) In the 1970s, the Nepalese government established an agreement with New Zealand for help in setting up a national park in the Mt Everest region of the Himalayas. Bruce Jeff eries, an Assistant Supervising Ranger with New Zealand's National Park Service, took off for Nepal with his wife Margaret, and three young children. Th ey had little idea of what to expect in this remote, ... read more

Blade NZ: Travel Stories From the Road (Adventure Travel the Length of New Zealand)

Matt Earle

A hilarious and heartwarming road trip through one of the most beautiful countries in the world - New Zealand "Many people talk about doing something crazy and adventurous, yet most never follow up on it. Although we looked like absolute twats, and had embarked on possibly the most ridiculous journey known to mankind, we were at least one step ahead of those people." It sounds like a rock soli... read more

A hilarious and heartwarming road trip through one of the most beautiful countries in the world - New Zealand "Many people talk about doing something crazy and adventurous, yet most never follow up on it. Although we looked like absolute twats, and had embarked on possibly the most ridiculous journey known to mankind, we were at least one step ahead of those people." It sounds like a rock soli... read more

Drive

Scott Butler

Toby Dresden is a taxi driver with a dream of fulfilling a project - his mother’s legacy. When a rival threatens to steal his work, he finds himself desperate and with no way to fund its development. A chance meeting shows him a way. Toby finds himself propelled into a world of drugs, addicts and crime lords, on his way to winning or losing it all, in a story that takes a good heart and pits l... read more

Toby Dresden is a taxi driver with a dream of fulfilling a project - his mother’s legacy. When a rival threatens to steal his work, he finds himself desperate and with no way to fund its development. A chance meeting shows him a way. Toby finds himself propelled into a world of drugs, addicts and crime lords, on his way to winning or losing it all, in a story that takes a good heart and pits l... read more

Upon A Time

R.L. Stedman

Fairy tales reborn! Inside this enchanting collection you'll find stories that are not-quite familiar. An assassin with a midnight deadline; a shoe store owned by Princeton Charming; a sleeping, ever-so-enchanted beast; an enchanted mirror (how do you define "fairest" anyway?). These are stories you've read a hundred times — but never quite like this. Written over a year, Upon a Time is more t... read more

Fairy tales reborn! Inside this enchanting collection you'll find stories that are not-quite familiar. An assassin with a midnight deadline; a shoe store owned by Princeton Charming; a sleeping, ever-so-enchanted beast; an enchanted mirror (how do you define "fairest" anyway?). These are stories you've read a hundred times — but never quite like this. Written over a year, Upon a Time is more t... read more

Foothold: The Story of Mankind's First Expedition to the Stars

Dennis Ingram

Adventure. Adversity. Hope.A starship with eight people is launched into the unknown for the epic adventure of a lifetime.In the second half of the 21st century, Earth is struggling under the load of an ever-increasing population and a degrading environment. The tide of human politics ebbs and flows. Rising above the turmoil, the will is found to build one lone starship and launch it toward Ta... read more

Adventure. Adversity. Hope.A starship with eight people is launched into the unknown for the epic adventure of a lifetime.In the second half of the 21st century, Earth is struggling under the load of an ever-increasing population and a degrading environment. The tide of human politics ebbs and flows. Rising above the turmoil, the will is found to build one lone starship and launch it toward Ta... read more

Speed: JS 1 A Jason Shaw Mystery (Jason Shaw Mystery Series) (Volume 1)

D C Grant

Jason Shaw, the fourteen year old son of a Seattle police detective, struggles to understand the mystery of the high speed car crash that killed his mother and left his father in a coma. With just his best friend Ben to help him Jason tries to make sense of the clues his father left behind but they make no sense and he’s not sure who he can trust within the police department. As he gets closer... read more

Jason Shaw, the fourteen year old son of a Seattle police detective, struggles to understand the mystery of the high speed car crash that killed his mother and left his father in a coma. With just his best friend Ben to help him Jason tries to make sense of the clues his father left behind but they make no sense and he’s not sure who he can trust within the police department. As he gets closer... read more

Jin's Great Escape

Maria Artho

This is the true story of a feisty little otter who escaped from Auckland zoo.For several weeks, New Zealand was gripped by otter fever as Jin was spotted in the suburbs, on beaches, and on islands in the Hauraki Gulf.The mischievous little otter made world news and captured the hearts of a nation.Jin's Great Escape is her tale.A 32 page picture book converted to 18 page flips on Kindle. Text ... read more

This is the true story of a feisty little otter who escaped from Auckland zoo.For several weeks, New Zealand was gripped by otter fever as Jin was spotted in the suburbs, on beaches, and on islands in the Hauraki Gulf.The mischievous little otter made world news and captured the hearts of a nation.Jin's Great Escape is her tale.A 32 page picture book converted to 18 page flips on Kindle. Text ... read more

The Bravest Guy: A True Story of Overcoming Impossible Odds

Harry Wedewer

As a U.S. Army infantryman in World War II, Don Wedewer was twice wounded in four days. On both occasions he was left for dead. Now, at 19. he was a double amputee and blind with seemingly no hope for the future. Yet, inspired by a brief meeting with the renowned activist, Helen Keller, and through extraordinary determination and persistence, this highly decorated combat veteran overcame seemi... read more

As a U.S. Army infantryman in World War II, Don Wedewer was twice wounded in four days. On both occasions he was left for dead. Now, at 19. he was a double amputee and blind with seemingly no hope for the future. Yet, inspired by a brief meeting with the renowned activist, Helen Keller, and through extraordinary determination and persistence, this highly decorated combat veteran overcame seemi... read more

The Emotional Challenges of Immigration:: Strategies and stories of those who stayed

Ellie Baker

Immigrants make up 3.15% of the world’s population, that’s 216 million people. How do you successfully progress from emigration to being a long term immigrant? You may not have moved countries; you may have changed areas, such as rural to city. Have you ever felt disconnected to the place in which you are living, or struggled with the language, humour or behaviours? Have you have missed featur... read more

Immigrants make up 3.15% of the world’s population, that’s 216 million people. How do you successfully progress from emigration to being a long term immigrant? You may not have moved countries; you may have changed areas, such as rural to city. Have you ever felt disconnected to the place in which you are living, or struggled with the language, humour or behaviours? Have you have missed featur... read more

Symphony Smythe and the Baked Bean Birthday party (Short & Sweet Reads Book 1)

Christine Hurst

Symphony Smythe just wants a normal birthday party. One with ice cream, cake and fizzy drinks. But her mum and dad have other, healthier ideas – and a menu that includes raw broccoli.Can Symphony stop her birthday party from turning into a huge embarrassment?Meet Symphony Smythe, a smart new friend for young readers.

Symphony Smythe just wants a normal birthday party. One with ice cream, cake and fizzy drinks. But her mum and dad have other, healthier ideas – and a menu that includes raw broccoli.Can Symphony stop her birthday party from turning into a huge embarrassment?Meet Symphony Smythe, a smart new friend for young readers.

The Prankster and the Ghost

R L Stedman

‘The school will be good for you, Tayla,' said the inspector. 'You’ll have children your own age to play with.’‘Dead children.’‘Well, yes. True. But you can't have everything' Stuck in a hospital bed, unable to move, Tayla decides to leave his body. But floating around intensive care is kind of boring, although being invisible means he can do some cool practical jokes...Until the inspector arr... read more

‘The school will be good for you, Tayla,' said the inspector. 'You’ll have children your own age to play with.’‘Dead children.’‘Well, yes. True. But you can't have everything' Stuck in a hospital bed, unable to move, Tayla decides to leave his body. But floating around intensive care is kind of boring, although being invisible means he can do some cool practical jokes...Until the inspector arr... read more

Chittens to the Rescue (The Chitten Adventures Book 3)

Julie Scott

Once again, Milly McGinty is in a mess of trouble. Papa Griffin is being held prisoner and Milly and the chittens are his only hope of rescue. But Milly is stuck in school camp, and with the world’s meanest teacher in charge, escape is not going to be easy.When the chittens take matters into their own paws, Milly is forced into action. Now everyone is depending on her: the chittens, the griffi... read more

Once again, Milly McGinty is in a mess of trouble. Papa Griffin is being held prisoner and Milly and the chittens are his only hope of rescue. But Milly is stuck in school camp, and with the world’s meanest teacher in charge, escape is not going to be easy.When the chittens take matters into their own paws, Milly is forced into action. Now everyone is depending on her: the chittens, the griffi... read more

Tom's Inheritance

TJ Green

When Tom accidentally crosses to the Otherworld in search of his missing grandfather, he meets the mysterious woman who has been appearing in his dreams - Vivian, the Lady of the Lake. She tells him he must travel to Avalon and wake King Arthur from his enchanted sleep. Something dark is stalking the old forest and Vivian needs Arthur’s help. The journey is filled with danger, strange magic, p... read more

When Tom accidentally crosses to the Otherworld in search of his missing grandfather, he meets the mysterious woman who has been appearing in his dreams - Vivian, the Lady of the Lake. She tells him he must travel to Avalon and wake King Arthur from his enchanted sleep. Something dark is stalking the old forest and Vivian needs Arthur’s help. The journey is filled with danger, strange magic, p... read more

Twice Born: Sequel to Tom's Inheritance

TJ Green

It’s been over a year since Tom returned from the ancient land of the Other after waking King Arthur, and he wishes he’d never left, so when Beansprout returns to see if he wants to go back, he leaps at the chance. Finally reunited with his friends, he joins them in the search for Nimue, a priestess of Avalon who has disappeared. While they investigate Nimue’s disappearance they wonder whether... read more

It’s been over a year since Tom returned from the ancient land of the Other after waking King Arthur, and he wishes he’d never left, so when Beansprout returns to see if he wants to go back, he leaps at the chance. Finally reunited with his friends, he joins them in the search for Nimue, a priestess of Avalon who has disappeared. While they investigate Nimue’s disappearance they wonder whether... read more

Robyn Hood: Outlaw Princess

John Reynolds

* A modern take on a classic story* Robyn is transported back in time to Sherwood Forest* Based on a full-length musical of the same nameRobyn Howard is a teenage schoolgirl. She lives with her father and her workaholic mother who always seems too busy for her. Robyn dreams of making a difference and wonders why there are so few famous women in history.After her mother lets her down yet again,... read more

* A modern take on a classic story* Robyn is transported back in time to Sherwood Forest* Based on a full-length musical of the same nameRobyn Howard is a teenage schoolgirl. She lives with her father and her workaholic mother who always seems too busy for her. Robyn dreams of making a difference and wonders why there are so few famous women in history.After her mother lets her down yet again,... read more

Stories on the Four Winds: Nga Hau e Wha

Brian Bargh

This collection brings together twenty short stories from eighteen of New Zealand’s accomplished writers. They explore the dark and dangerous milieu of our comfortable existence. There is humour, tenderness, surprise, anger, sorrow and abject desperation in these stories from the four winds.The authors are Patricia Grace, Albert Wendt, Alice Tawhai, Briar Grace-Smith, Paula Morris, Tina Makere... read more

This collection brings together twenty short stories from eighteen of New Zealand’s accomplished writers. They explore the dark and dangerous milieu of our comfortable existence. There is humour, tenderness, surprise, anger, sorrow and abject desperation in these stories from the four winds.The authors are Patricia Grace, Albert Wendt, Alice Tawhai, Briar Grace-Smith, Paula Morris, Tina Makere... read more

Searching for Summer

Elizabeth Ascot

I open the packet. Out falls a pile of aerograms, letters and postcards from me to my family at home in New Zealand. I pick up the nearest and look at the date. Fifty years ago. Impossible.It’s 1963. Elizabeth and Jane leave New Zealand for London and adventure. But when one of the coldest British winters on record hits, the two friends flee to gentler climes.Searching for Summer is a light-he... read more

I open the packet. Out falls a pile of aerograms, letters and postcards from me to my family at home in New Zealand. I pick up the nearest and look at the date. Fifty years ago. Impossible.It’s 1963. Elizabeth and Jane leave New Zealand for London and adventure. But when one of the coldest British winters on record hits, the two friends flee to gentler climes.Searching for Summer is a light-he... read more

Orion Rising

Chard Andrews

A.D. 2080 It has been sixty years since the wars. Most of the Earth is an uninhabitable wasteland. The remaining human population is crammed into Australia, New Zealand, and the ruins of the Indonesian archipelago. Life in the Commonwealth is finally settling. Entire cities are housed in towering sea-rises on the coasts, and all food is supplied from vast fleets of floating farms moored at sea... read more

A.D. 2080 It has been sixty years since the wars. Most of the Earth is an uninhabitable wasteland. The remaining human population is crammed into Australia, New Zealand, and the ruins of the Indonesian archipelago. Life in the Commonwealth is finally settling. Entire cities are housed in towering sea-rises on the coasts, and all food is supplied from vast fleets of floating farms moored at sea... read more

Huia Short Stories 11: Contemporary Maori Fiction

Here are the best short stories and novel extracts from the 2015 Pikihuia Awards for Maori writers as judged by Witi Ihimaera, Sir Wira Gardiner and Poia Rewi. The book contains the stories from the finalists for Best Short Story written in English, Best Short Story written in Maori and Best Novel Extract.

Here are the best short stories and novel extracts from the 2015 Pikihuia Awards for Maori writers as judged by Witi Ihimaera, Sir Wira Gardiner and Poia Rewi. The book contains the stories from the finalists for Best Short Story written in English, Best Short Story written in Maori and Best Novel Extract.

The Seasoning (Foothold Book 2)

Dennis Ingram

Surprise. Adversity. Hope.Sixteen years have passed since the eight crew of the Starship Hope arrived in the Tau Ceti system and established a colony on the fifth planet from the star, a planet they named Serendipity.Their colony has thrived. Together with their children they have turned their habitat into a paradise and begun to terraform the planet.But none of them realise that another stars... read more

Surprise. Adversity. Hope.Sixteen years have passed since the eight crew of the Starship Hope arrived in the Tau Ceti system and established a colony on the fifth planet from the star, a planet they named Serendipity.Their colony has thrived. Together with their children they have turned their habitat into a paradise and begun to terraform the planet.But none of them realise that another stars... read more

Serendipity (Foothold Book 3)

Dennis Ingram

Adversity. Fear. Survival.The inhabitants of Serendipity have survived the dramatic events that followed the arrival of humankind’s second starship, the Inspiration. David Miller’s beloved Grace lies suspended between life and death, and he faces the prospect of leading a divided community. Meanwhile, disaster looms in the form of a planet-busting asteroid that will strike their planet in a ma... read more

Adversity. Fear. Survival.The inhabitants of Serendipity have survived the dramatic events that followed the arrival of humankind’s second starship, the Inspiration. David Miller’s beloved Grace lies suspended between life and death, and he faces the prospect of leading a divided community. Meanwhile, disaster looms in the form of a planet-busting asteroid that will strike their planet in a ma... read more

Symphony Smythe Wants a Pet (Short & Sweet Reads Book 2)

Christine Hurst

What’s a girl to do when she really really wants a pet, but her parents say no? Use her imagination, that’s what! And Symphony Smythe has an imagination like no other. Soon she has furry, feathered and scaly friends galore. But Mum and Dad worry when Symphony starts to lap her breakfast milk, walk on all fours and say nothing but ‘Meow’. Symphony Smythe is back in this fun and furry tale for y... read more

What’s a girl to do when she really really wants a pet, but her parents say no? Use her imagination, that’s what! And Symphony Smythe has an imagination like no other. Soon she has furry, feathered and scaly friends galore. But Mum and Dad worry when Symphony starts to lap her breakfast milk, walk on all fours and say nothing but ‘Meow’. Symphony Smythe is back in this fun and furry tale for y... read more

Samoan Heroes (Pasifika Heroes Book 1)

David Riley

Samoan Heroes presents inspirational stories of achievers who have Samoan ancestry. It includes legends like Sinālemalama and Tigilau; historical figures such as Tupua Tamasese Lealofi III and Salamāsina; and contemporary heroes like Dwayne 'The Rock' Johnson, Judge Ida Mālosi, Troy Polamalu, Savage and Associate Professor Donna Addis. Readers will be inspired as they discover the challenges t... read more

Samoan Heroes presents inspirational stories of achievers who have Samoan ancestry. It includes legends like Sinālemalama and Tigilau; historical figures such as Tupua Tamasese Lealofi III and Salamāsina; and contemporary heroes like Dwayne 'The Rock' Johnson, Judge Ida Mālosi, Troy Polamalu, Savage and Associate Professor Donna Addis. Readers will be inspired as they discover the challenges t... read more

Three Times Dead

D C Grant

What do you do when you have an out of body experience? If you're like Bevan, you start looking for answers to that age old question - is there life after death? But Bevan's search brings him closer to death than he really wanted, almost losing his life in a serious car accident. What he does lose, however, is his left leg below the knee. It's a cruel blow and circumstances are not made any ea... read more

What do you do when you have an out of body experience? If you're like Bevan, you start looking for answers to that age old question - is there life after death? But Bevan's search brings him closer to death than he really wanted, almost losing his life in a serious car accident. What he does lose, however, is his left leg below the knee. It's a cruel blow and circumstances are not made any ea... read more

What Love Is: A young woman's salvation relies on the love of an Anzac soldier

D C Grant

Seventeen and pregnant, Gina has some tough decisions to make - should she marry the father of her baby? The former bad boy Bevan, on home detention for robbery, swears he has mended his ways and will care for Gina and their child. But Gina’s own childhood experience of being abandoned by her mother gives her little faith in ‘love’.When her grandmother goes into a rest home, Gina begins to sor... read more

Seventeen and pregnant, Gina has some tough decisions to make - should she marry the father of her baby? The former bad boy Bevan, on home detention for robbery, swears he has mended his ways and will care for Gina and their child. But Gina’s own childhood experience of being abandoned by her mother gives her little faith in ‘love’.When her grandmother goes into a rest home, Gina begins to sor... read more

Sally Bangle: Unexpected Detective

Melinda Szymanik

A junior mystery for 8 to 12 year olds. What really happened to Sally's Dad lost at sea 7 years before? What were they really up to on that mysterious polar expedition? And why has her Mum suddenly left her job? Why won't her teacher, the school principal and the school bully leave her alone? Sally needs her wits, her courage, her best friend, her best friend's chauffer and even her brother's ... read more

A junior mystery for 8 to 12 year olds. What really happened to Sally's Dad lost at sea 7 years before? What were they really up to on that mysterious polar expedition? And why has her Mum suddenly left her job? Why won't her teacher, the school principal and the school bully leave her alone? Sally needs her wits, her courage, her best friend, her best friend's chauffer and even her brother's ... read more

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