Making Words Count
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Emily Heckman

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Emily Heckman

I was super lucky to work with great authors like Wendell Berry, M. F. K. Fisher, Edward M. Hallowell, M.D., Stephen King, Mary Higgins Clark, Ann Rule, and so many others during my time as an acquisitions editor with companies like Grove Press, Macmillan, Random House, and Simon & Schuster.   

Now, as an independent editor, I get the best of both worlds, being able to work with editors, publishers, and literary agents while having the freedom to give my clients my focused time and attention.   My goal is to help writers develop their craft in ways that are deeply satisfying and successful.

I edit both fiction and nonfiction in equal measure.   My areas of expertise in fiction include thrillers, commercial literary fiction, and women’s fiction. (Sorry:  I don’t edit science fiction or fantasy.)   I love any nonfiction that presents new ideas and cutting-edge information in super compelling ways.   I love collaborating with experts on nonfiction books and book proposals, mainly in the areas of health, psychology, and memoir.

I work in ways that best suit my clients and this may include developmental editing, line-editing, creating a book proposal, collaborating on writing a book, or general writing coaching or publishing industry consulting.

For questions about my rates, availability, or the process, feel free to reach out to me by email.    Or visit my website:  EHE: Emily Heckman Editorial.


A former Executive Editor at Pocket Books and the co-author of some nine books, Emily was incisive in her critiques of the evolving proposal, creative in her suggestions, and enthusiastic in her support. She had a powerful role in shaping this book. In the process, she also became a close friend.
— Joseph Burgo, Ph.D., author of The Narcissist You Know: Defending Yourself Against Extreme Narcissists in an All-About-Me Age
Emily Heckman, a freelance editor of impeccable skill and straight talk, was my field training officer. She didn’t pull any punches, and that has made all the difference.
— Neal Griffin, author of Benefit of the Doubt