Editing of Fiction and Nonfiction
Publishing a successful novel or nonfiction book requires assistance and support from several professionals—at the very least an editor and a designer.
20+ Years Experience
As a prize-winning author and professionally trained editor, I can make sure your book meets industry standards and prepare it for publication so you can sell it.
So Good They Can’t Ignore You
Agents and publishers stop reading most manuscripts before the end of the first page. (Yes, really.) Readers likewise sample the opening when searching for their next book. Let me show you how to craft the first page—and the pages that follow—without losing readers.
Books that sell require a powerful hook, vivid setting and description, compelling character arcs, rising tension, believable dialogue, solid scene structure, a plot that holds together, well-calibrated pacing, and a satisfying climax.
All manuscripts need to be free from grammar problems, typos, filler words, unwieldy construction, and broken mechanics. Those things distract and annoy readers, throw people out of the story, and lead to bad reviews.
You could pay thousands of dollars to work with a hybrid publisher, but why would you want to? All you need is an editor and a designer. After your book has been published, selling it at online retailers is a lot easier than you might think.
I’m here to help you, not judge you.
My clients have won numerous book awards
Beverly Hills Book Award for Legal Thriller of the Year
Goethe Award for Historical Fiction
Royal Dragonfly Book Award
Oregon Book Award
National Indie Excellence Award
Testimonials & Featured Clients
“Writers searching for thorough, insightful, and immensely helpful editing will find it with Michael J. Totten. He helped me clarify murky language, fix problems with the plot, and add greater impact to the climax.” Caroline Taylor, author of Beautiful in Death
“If you’re looking for an editor to help you take your book to the next level, look no further than Michael J. Totten. I’ve always found his astute insights invaluable.” Scott William Carter, author of The Gray and Guilty Sea
“I’ve admired Michael J. Totten’s work as a writer for years, but it turns out he is also a superb editor. He copyedited my most recent novel, and he was a delight to work with from start to finish. He’s quick, responsive, constructive, and sharp-eyed. You can’t go wrong working with him.” Judith Deborah, author of A Falling Knife: An Evan Adair Mystery
“I strongly recommend the services of Michael J. Totten. As an accomplished writer, journalist, and editor, Michael is second to none. He has helped me with two books and enormously improved both. He is very responsive to questions and concerns and easy to work with, and I look forward to working with him on my third book.” Fred Litwin, author of I Was a Teenage JFK Conspiracy Freak
“Michael was both professional and prompt. He edited, did the interior design, and published two of my novels. He brings experience as a prize-winning author to the table, and this enriches his editorial and procedural insights and recommendations. His critiques were constructive, encouraging, and took my unique voice and strengths into consideration. I highly recommend him and intend to use him again.” Erik Bundy, author of Magic and Murder Among the Dwarves
Sometimes I write About Writing
Tell me what you’re working on, send me your questions, ask for a free sample edit, or just say hi.
michaeltotten001 at gmail dot com