Fiction editing for indie authors: making your words sparkle!
I offer full line and copy-editing, sample edits, a mini edit and critique service, formatting, and blurb-writing.
I work across a variety of genres, but mystery, crime, thriller and romance are my specialist subjects. You can see my portfolio of work here.
I’m an Advanced Professional Member of the Chartered Institute of Editing and Proofreading (CIEP) and also the author of the CIEP’s Getting Started in Fiction Editing. I'm also a Charter Member of the Association of Independent Publishing Professionals (AIPP), and a Partner Member of the Alliance of Independent Authors (ALLi).
I've worked as an editor and writer for more than 15 years and particularly enjoy working with new authors and helping them to navigate the self-publishing process and improve their writing for the future.
Recent training and development
Brush up your grammar (Society for Editors and Proofreaders), Editing with Word (Society for Editors and Proofreaders), Introduction to fiction editing (Society for Editors and Proofreaders), Intermediate and advanced developmental editing for fiction (Editorial Freelancers Association), Book mapping (Editorial Freelancers Association), SfEP conferences (2015, 2016, 2017, 2018)
- Full line and copy-edit: Comprehensive sentence-level editing, focusing on correcting errors, smoothing your writing, improving flow and readability, and polishing your prose.
- Sample edit: A full line and copy-edit of 1,000 words to show you how I work.
- Mini edit: A comprehensive critique and full line and copy-edit of your first 10,000 words for agent submission or to help you self-edit.
- Blurbs: A 150–200-word blurb to use for your back cover or online book description.
- Formatting: Interior formatting for e-book and print.
- Mystery (including cosy)
- Urban/light fantasy
- Young adult
- Women's fiction
- Advanced Professional Member of the CIEP
- Worked on more than 100 fiction projects
- Author of Getting Started in Fiction Editing (CIEP guide)
- Tutor on the CIEP's Introduction to Fiction Editing course
- Training delivered to other editors at CIEP conferences
- Worked with best-selling authors in the Amazon and New York Times charts
- Seven years’ experience as sub-editor and chief sub-editor for award-winning regional daily The Press and Journal
- Three years’ experience as a reporter for DC Thomson
- Former senior media officer for the emergency services
- Member of international editing collective Editing Globally
As a self-published author, I was advised one of the most important things I could do is find a good editor. When I discovered Katherine Trail, I quickly understood why this was the best advice I have ever had. With Katherine it’s not just about typos and bad grammar. She has a delightfully cheerful and optimistic manner, and she always manages to deliver advice and suggestions that invariably improve my stories. As a result, my writing is continually improving and, after nine novels and five novellas, Katherine has become a trusted ally and confidant. In my opinion, I found an editor who is much more than good. I wouldn’t dream of publishing another book without her seal of approval.
P. F. Ford
Working with Katherine is an amazing experience for any author. While she is rigorous, efficient, precise and fast in her work, she also brings to the table important and subtle qualities which ensure that the final result of working with her will be exceeding all expectations. Her capacity to think from the author’s perspective enables her to improve on a book without deviating from the author’s key message and style. With her keen sense of style, she detects and eliminates any awkwardness in the text flow and proposes elegant formulations entirely in line with the author’s own style and dictation. Stepping into the book critique’s shoes, she analyses the story line and points out inconsistencies, proposing at the same time how to deal with them, giving a story the final polish to make it a great read. Not stopping there, Katherine guides the author towards completing the text with explanations, dramatis personae, maps and other elements to ensure that the final result is a professional product. Her patient and highly competent way of working with an author, always aiming at arriving at a perfect product, has been and is an absolute pleasure for me. I cannot recommend her highly enough – working with Katherine is putting your text in the best hands you can possibly imagine.