Editing and Critique for Flash Fiction and Short Stories
Want an expert eye on a short story or flash fiction you are currently working on? Are you struggling to get to the heart of the story? Does the writing need a final polish at sentence level?
I offer a variety of editorial services for short fiction from looking at the overall structure to approaching your writing with a magnifying glass.
Structural Review: feedback on the narrative, structure, pacing, characterisation, thematic progression and emotional journey of your story
Line Edit: detailed in-line edits and comments on style, tone of voice, word choice, concision, readability, rhythm. flow of ideas, spelling and grammar
Detailed Edit: a structural review and line edit rolled into one
Proof Edit: thorough proofread and quick-win edits
"Not only has my writing greatly improved as a result of Matt's editing service, my confidence and desire to write has also grown. Even his pointers of things to improve are given in a way that make me feel I am a great writer."
"Matt has reviewed many of my flashes and short stories, including a soon-to-be-published novella-in-flash, and several pieces that went on to win and be placed in competitions. His feedback is always insightful, encouraging, challenging, and on time. He is also a delight to deal with!"
Michelle Christophorou, Author of "Kipris"
"Matt helped me get from 'now what?' to 'yes, of course.' His feedback covered big picture stuff and single word choices. I'd recommend him in a heartbeat."
Want some pointers on how you might improve a specific story or work in progress? In a structural review, I'll look at the following aspects of your writing:
Narrative - does the story have a sense of narrative journey? Has something changed? Are there ways the narrative could be enhanced? Are there opportunities for further layers?
Structure and pacing - does the form of your story hold together? Are there moments where the story needs to hurry along a little faster or places where the story needs more time to breathe?
Characterisation - are the people in your story well-drawn and believable? Is it easy to connect with them and to understand their motivations?
Thematic progression - how do the themes in your story work from a reader's perspective? Are there opportunities to do more with the themes you've chosen?
Impact - does the way you've written your story resonate? Is there an emotional core?
Happy with your overarching story but want help with the nitty-gritty of words and sentences? In a line edit, I'll make in-line comments / tracked changes on your document regarding:
Flow of ideas - does the ordering of character actions or descriptive elements work to its best advantage?
Style, tone-of-voice and word choice - are there moments when the tone of your writing wavers in comparison to the overall style? Are there particular word choices that don't work as well as they might? Is there unwanted repetition of word choice or unintended alliteration or rhyme?
Concision and readability - are there additional words that aren't needed? Are there ways of rephrasing to make a sentence more pithy?
Rhythm and flow - is there enough variance in sentence structure? Do sentences segue naturally from the one before?
Spelling and grammar - are there any typos or missing / additional words? Is there consistency of tense? Is dialogue or internal thought formatted in a consistent manner?
Want both of the above in one go? In a detailed edit, I'll look at everything from a structural review as well as providing a line edit of your story.
Mostly happy with your story but want to add that final polish and sheen to make it really sparkle? In a proof edit, I'll thoroughly proofread your story for typos, spelling and grammatical errors, inconsistencies and issues with formatting. I'll also suggest quick-win edits that you might consider to improve concision, readability and flow.
up to 500
additional 500 words
Request a Critique or an Edit
Please email your request to firstname.lastname@example.org letting me know:
the word count of your story
what type of critique / edit you would like
any time frames (i.e. competition deadlines) you are working towards
anything that would be helpful to you in terms of accessibility (e.g. larger font size on feedback reports)
Please put 'Editing Request' plus your story's title as the email's subject.
As someone with a severe chronic health problem, please note that I don't check emails every day. However, if you don't hear back from me within five calendar days, please follow up your enquiry.
Payment by Paypal, card or BACS (UK only) on receipt of your feedback.