Jennifer Huston Schaeffer
White Dog Editorial Services
On my website, there’s a photo of me at age 4. I’m dressed in yellow footie pajamas, have Farrah Fawcett bangs, and am seated in front of a baby blue 1970s–era Smith Corona typewriter. Looking back, it’s obvious from that photo that I was destined for a career as a writer and editor.
Fast-forward 40+ years to present day. After more than 16 years working on staff for various publishers, I left a senior editor position to pursue a career as a full-time editorial freelancer. I am currently seeking projects that will allow me to showcase my exceptional developmental/ substantive editing, line editing, copy editing, and proofreading skills for fiction and nonfiction books for both adults and children. I specialize in biographies and memoirs, historical fiction and nonfiction, creative/narrative nonfiction, crime fiction, true crime, self-help, women’s fiction, and children’s books for ages 8 and up.
I didn’t start out with my dream job as a book editor. I had to cut my teeth as an editorial assistant and make my way up the ranks. Even before that, I worked on the college newspaper and as an administrative assistant for an insurance agency. Those jobs along with my eclectic interests in history, sports, psychology, pop culture, music, math, and genealogy—just to name a few—have made me a better editor and shaped who I am today, personally and professionally.
Hiring someone to edit your manuscript—your masterpiece—is a big decision. You want someone who has a great deal of experience editing books and understands the ins and outs of the publishing process. During my career, I have worked on corporate communications, including newsletters, marketing materials, websites, and résumés, as well as supplemental teacher materials, but books are my passion. I have edited nearly 300 books—both fiction and nonfiction—in my 20+ years in the publishing industry, and I’m proficient in the Chicago Manual of Style. Moreover, I can assure you that I am genuine, collaborative, diplomatic, and meticulous in my work, and I take pride in my high standards of excellence, strong work ethic, and integrity in business transactions.
I understand that you might be concerned that an editor will take away your voice and alter your manuscript until it’s completely unrecognizable to you. But that’s not my goal. I believe that the author/editor relationship is a collaborative one. I understand the hours you’ve put into writing your manuscript. I get that it’s your “baby” and an expression of your creative soul. My only goal is to improve the work you’ve already done. I can look at the text objectively, just like your readers will. And based on my extensive experience, I can offer advice on how to make it flow better, enhance the word choice, and provide suggestions to improve clarity.
No matter what type of editing you need from me, you can be assured that I will bring my “A game” to the table. I can promise you that I will give your manuscript the same attention to detail and high standards of quality that I give to each project I work on. We’re on the same team, and our goal is to make your book the very best it can be.
Here’s what some satisfied clients have said about my work:
“I have collaborated with Jennifer twice, and each time I have found her to be extremely helpful for my project. She has a great editing process that helped polish my manuscript into the best it could be. Her editing was top-notch, and she dove headfirst into the world I was trying to create. She is communicative, prompt, and courteous. The best thing I can say is that she truly seemed to care about the quality of my book and teaching me how to write better. I will most definitely work with Jennifer again!”
—Matt Zullo, author of On the Roof Gang: Prelude to War and On the Roof Gang: War in the Pacific
“Jennifer is simply a fantastic editor. She digs in to truly understand the characters, the writer’s voice, and the pulse and flow of the story. Her edits and recommendations are very clear and easy to follow. In the end, she delivered with what she signed up for and more. In addition to the edited manuscript, she crafted a very thorough editorial report and style sheet and included additional guidance for publishing. A writer will be challenged to find someone with the work ethic, attention to detail, and passion that Jen brings to this process. I look forward to working with her again on my next manuscript.”
—Jay Soupene, author of Wapsipinicon Summer and Angels of Mount Hope
“Jennifer Huston was the perfect partner for me in this journey of mine to produce a novel. As a first-time author, it’s fair to say I really didn’t know what I didn’t know. She was so much more than just a traditional editor. Her meticulous and comprehensive approach to her craft went well beyond anything I expected or even imagined. She really became invested in the cause. Any writer experiences moments of doubt. Having someone like Jennifer alongside you for inspiration can make a world of difference. I described her as a partner because that’s precisely what she is, and that’s how she approaches her job. I am very thankful to have had Jennifer Huston with me in this process, and I’d wholeheartedly endorse her to anyone else seeking a phenomenal editor.”
—Dan Coonan, author of Presidential Spirits
“I’ve been a teacher for twenty years, and I was an editor myself for two years, so (truth be told) I thought I knew everything about writing—until I hired Jennifer. Best decision I ever made. She was definitely worth every penny! Jennifer is an exceedingly hard worker, extremely professional, and nothing short of an editing genius. Jennifer also went above and beyond the call of duty, making sure I understood how to navigate through her revisions using Track Changes and gave me tips on what to do moving forward. Most importantly, Jennifer made it clear that she truly cares about my book and that it wasn’t just another manuscript. I believe Jennifer loves what she does and takes great pride in a job well done.”
—Claire Josephine, author of The Sad Son
“I’ve been a freelancer for almost 25 years and have worked with many editors, and Jennifer is easily one of the best. Her comments and queries always improved the clarity and accuracy of the text, and she knows how to tailor the content to the intended audience. She was a joy to work with, and I always looked forward to our next project together.”
—Michael Burgan, freelance writer
“I had the pleasure of working with Jennifer Huston in 2003. I was a first-time author at that point and in great need of an experienced editor. I could not have been happier with Jennifer’s work. I had read my manuscript multiple times, naively thinking nothing more needed to be done. Enter Jennifer. She did a phenomenal job in assisting with character development, and her developmental editing skills were exceptional. She finished her editing very quickly, and I could not have been more pleased with the final product. I have been working on another book and look forward to having Jennifer edit this one as well. She’s not only knowledgeable but a true professional!”
—James Pauley Jr., co-author of Granny and the Gay Guy
Check out my website (www.whitedogeditorial.com) and drop me a line on the website’s contact form or at email@example.com. I look forward to discussing your project and wish you and your book all the best!
Years in the field: 20
Years freelancing: 5