Thomas Houlton

Thomas Houlton – Editor

Freelance editor and author, working in LBGTQ+ fiction/nonfiction, novels, short form, nonfiction and academic/specialist writing.


I am an experienced editor of literary fiction and narrative nonfiction, particularly those dealing with outsider or queer perspectives and experiences. I work as a freelance editor on literary novels, novellas, experimental fiction, narrative nonfiction and specialist academic articles and monographs. I have also worked as chief editor for an interdisciplinary academic journal, working with writers on dozens of high quality peer-review articles for publication.

I have worked as a developmental editor on EXIT MANAGEMENT (Dead Ink), Not the Booker-finalist SEALED (Dead Ink), and Manchester Novella Prize-finalist THE LOST ART OF SINKING (Penned in the Margins), all by Naomi Booth ('50 writers you should read now', The Guardian); crime novella and SDP bestseller THE LUMINOL REELS (Calamari Books) by Laura Ellen Joyce; and 'Sitcom' short story by Kieran Devaney, in BEST BRITISH SHORT STORIES 2019 (Salt).

I have worked as a developmental nonfiction editor on the bestselling A HONEYBEE HEART HAS FIVE OPENINGS (Scribner) by Helen Jukes; WRONG: A CRITICAL BIOGRAPHY OF DENNIS COOPER (University of Iowa Press) by Diarmuid Hester; and LUMINOL THEORY (Punctum) by Laura Ellen Joyce.

I was Chief Editor and Submissions Editor for the interdisciplinary journal EXCURSIONS, currently in its 10th year of commissioning and publishing creative and academic engagements around contemporary themes I have a wealth of experience editing and proofreading PhD theses, peer-review journal articles, and other writing for a specialist academic audience.


"Thomas is an extremely astute reader and editor. I've been fortunate to have him as a first reader for much of my work, and he has given invaluable feedback on both my creative and academic prose work. His attention to detail and creative vision are invaluable." - Naomi Booth (EXIT MANAGEMENT; SEALED)

"Thomas Houlton lent me his considerable editorial expertise while I was writing my book, WRONG (University of Iowa Press, 2020). As an editor, Thomas is one of a kind: a careful reader with years of experience, he guides you with hints and tips and suggestions for revisions, but is sensitive to the investments all writers have in their work. Thomas helped me to develop a clear vision for my writing and find the right tone for my manuscript. With his help, my book found a mainstream readership and has gone on to be a cross-over success." - Diarmuid Hester (WRONG)

"Tom is an intelligent, insightful, and highly creative critic. He’s helped me with fiction, memoir and non-fiction; he engages fully with each project, often challenging me to see and think about my work differently, and always gives more than I expect in terms of feedback. I feel very lucky to have worked with him!" - Helen Jukes (A HONEYBEE HEART HAS FIVE OPENINGS)

"Thomas Houlton has edited my fiction and non-fiction books, and I would be delighted to work with him in the future. I would warmly recommend Thomas to writers seeking an editor with an eye for detail, and clear-sighted feedback. Perhaps the most special thing about Thomas is that he is also a generous reader who cares as much about your book as you do!" - Laura Ellen Joyce (THE LUMINOL REELS; LUMINOL THEORY)

"Tom is the best proofreader I have had. He has read, edited and commented the final draft of my thesis, and provided critical and insightful feedback. As a non-native English speaker, I have not always been confident with my writing. Fortunately, Tom’s helpful suggestions enabled me to identify the recurring mistakes I would make, and improve my writing skills, without changing my work’s writing style and tone. His extensive knowledge of gender studies and queer theory enabled him to engage with and contribute to the complex arguments conveyed in my work." - Dr. Gaspard Pelurson, lecturer at Leeds Beckett University

Biographies & Memoirs Education & Reference LGBTQ Non-Fiction
LGBTQ Fiction Literary Fiction Short Story
English (UK) English (US)
  • Member of the Editorial Freelancers Association
  • PhD in English Literature and Visual Cultures, University of Sussex

Work experience

Self employed

Feb, 2012 — Present

I work as a freelance editor on literary fiction, narrative nonfiction and academic articles.

Excursions Journal

Jan, 2012 — Jul, 2017 (over 5 years)

I was chief editor on 'Excursions Journal', an international interdisciplinary nonfiction and academic journal, for five years. During this time I also worked as submissions editor, copyeditor and proofreader on dozens of essays and articles, working with authors to produce high-quality peer review essays on subjects that ranged from colour theory to 'The Human Centipede' and Renaissance Drama.

Self employed

Jan, 2010 — Present

I write fiction, poetry, short stories and nonfiction, and my work has been published in journals, magazines, and international presses. My poetry and short fiction have been published in SKIVE Magazine, Burning House Press, and Entropy Magazine, and my nonfiction in Excursions Journal and Derrida Today. My forthcoming nonfiction book, MONUMENTS: HISTORIES, THEORIES, FUTURES will be published by Routledge in 2021.


Exit Management

Booth, Naomi


Daisy Johnson

'Engaging, modern fables with a feminist tang' Sunday TimesDARK, POTENT AND UNCANNY, HAG BURSTS WITH THE UNTOLD STORIES OF OUR ISLES, CAPTURED IN VOICES AS VARIED AS THEY ARE VIVID.Here are sisters fighting for the love of the same woman, a pregnant archaeolog... read more
The Luminol Reels

Joyce, Laura Ellen

Luminol Theory

Joyce, Laura E.


Booth, Naomi

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