You’ve just written a book – your manifesto, your statement, your creed. It might not change the world overnight or become the best-seller next year. But you do hope it will get traction. At least, you wish it would reward all your hard work.

But all your hard work is now your biggest block. You feel you’ve been at it for way too long and way too deep. You can no longer tell if what you wrote makes any sense, or if it reads well at all. But what’s the whole point then, if your best effort isn’t to your credit? You need someone to ensure that it is.

If you could see your book with a fresh pair of eyes, you too would notice duplicate paragraphs, overlong sentences, and some ideas that have remained unclear. Every manuscript is bound to have them. And a savvy editor sorts it all out.

But to get a fresh perspective, you’d need the one thing that you don’t have – time. Your publisher is impatient, your agent is filling up your speaking calendar, and your material is getting out of date by the hour. Your editor will need to work quite fast.

Trouble is: you don’t have an editor. You’ve been so busy writing, you never even thought of one. And even if you know where one can find them, how much to pay them or what to expect from a professional editor, crucially, your editor must understand your topic, and must quickly pick up and respect your writing style. Sounds daunting. Are you about to drop the ball, so close to the goal line?

You can relax now. I’ll edit your book. I’ve edited manuscripts by self-made visionaries, renowned academics, business leaders and true icons. With my edits, your book will be just fine.

Things to know about me if you need an Editor

My apprenticeship started early. My mother would sometimes take me to her office at a daily newspaper. I’d silently watch pairs of proofreaders at work: one person would whisper an edited article; the other would make sure that the typeset proof matched it to a tee. At that age of five or six, guess what I wanted to be when I’d grow up – a text whisperer.

Book editing on a typewriter

Latte-coloured typewriter with a grey keyboard and a blank piece of paper around its roller. A dark tag, front left, features the white logotype "Erika".

When I was in junior school, my father – a columnist at another daily – landed what later proved to be a seminal editing gig. An elderly, white-haired gentleman brought him a battered suitcase full of papers covered in faint type. It took my father almost a year of labouring in his spare time to turn that man’s retyped journals from gulags into a book he entitled 7000 Days In Siberia. Published in 1971 in Yugoslavia, it became a best-seller, was later translated into many languages and has influenced writers such as Danilo Kiš.

Play editing

Compressing a classic Serbian theatrical comedy was my first editing feat. A school friend and I shortened some scenes, cut out two of five acts and halved the number of key characters, to accommodate our small drama club ensemble. Our one-off production won the main prize at an annual city-wide contest that year. I was 17.

Vintage black and white photo showing a pair of amateur teenage girl actors on stage. Standing on a chair, one covers the other one's eyes from behind.

Screenplay editing

After earning my Script-writing degree, I’d land small jobs on movie shoots. Hired as a Dialogue Coach on a multi-language comedy being shot in Dubrovnik, I had left my priceless early-adopter’s personal computer back home in Belgrade. That was a big mistake.

Just two days before principal photography, the production came to a halt. The cast started rehearsing their first scene – in four different languages. (Originally written in Serbian, the script had been translated into English, Italian and French during financing, but oddly wasn’t revised later to include several international stars that were attached over time.) The rehearsal suddenly made it clear that a wholly different – multilingual – dialogue was urgently needed.

As the only scriptwriter (and polyglot) on the team, I couldn’t spend the unexpected recess at the beach, like everyone else. Back in my hotel room, I had to rewrite the dialogue as fast as possible. Using scissors and sellotape, I weaved in words like “marriage” or “cemetery” that sound similar in those languages, so that the characters could plausibly “converse” while each spoke their own tongue. I eventually changed the ending too, to match the new narrative.

Screenwriting legend Dalton Trumbo also used to cut and paste scenes by hand, often in his bathtub, but months before any production. Me, I’d compile a couple of scenes overnight, for the next day’s shoot, with cast and crew waiting. No pressure. And no, I don’t recall getting a credit. (But, when your book needs last-minute professional editing, who you’re gonna call?)

Editing and proofreading in pre-press

Excerpt from a slanted legal text book, showing a red-coloured proofreader's mark to change the letter "u" into "i" and turn "De Minimus" into "De Minimis" in the sub-headline.

I got into Advertising as a budding Copywriter; I quickly learnt to make every word count. I later doubled as an Account Manager, at a time when that meant proofreading each version of every deliverable twice. Working in an advertising and pre-press shop in Toronto, I insisted on double-checking everything, even when clients wanted to save time. That’s how I caught a typo in Latin – in a legal book whose author had already approved it for print.

Editing and proofreading works by multiple authors

In the two decades I worked as an expert in Change Communications on Government projects funded by the UNDP or the EU, I edited countless reports and large publications about their results, in English, Serbian, or both. They were co-written by many consultants with distinct writing styles. Sometimes, individual authors would collect essays from various sources and compile entire books on topics like Energy, Macroeconomics, Education, Trade, and Communication. My ability to harmonize all the different styles has proven as important as ensuring that the writing is always accurate and precise.

My editing highlights to date

My most recent editing job

In early 2024, I edited the upcoming book by an American emeritus professor, who is a leading voice in AI, about the societal challenges brought on by AI. We only had four days until his publisher’s deadline. We worked online, in parallel, and polished his master file in the cloud, just in time. (Again, no pressure.) The book is due in September.

Editing services I offer

  • Structural editing: I suggest how you can reorganize parts of your manuscript to improve its structure (e.g., Guy Kawasaki rearranged Chapter 6 of his memoir Wise Guy in line with my suggestions)
  • Stylistic editing: I clarify meaning, flag or rephrase excessive jargon, polish language, and apply other ways to improve your text line by line
  • Copy editing: I edit your text as needed for grammar, usage, spelling, punctuation, rhythm and other aspects of style; I check facts for accuracy; I flag wrong head levels and errors in placement of visuals; I check and, if needed, edit links, tables, figures, and lists, and alert you if I have any concerns
  • Proofreading: I correct your spelling mistakes and check your formatted pages for any flaws in typesetting and layout, if present
  • Beta-reading: I read your manuscript and give you constructive feedback from a reader’s point of view; my detailed report can help you fine-tune your work before you publish it (I may include sample editing in some cases)

Most importantly, I keep a cool head and don’t get beguiled by a captivating story. If your writing is flawed in any way, I raise the issue and I help you fix it.

Need an experienced editor?