Become a freelance story editor

. . . and help authors tell better stories

If you’ve ever dreamed of editing novels for a living, Club Ed can help you make that dream come true. Our classes and other resources will support you on your journey.

Check out the Club Ed Course Catalog here.

Sign up for the free Club Ed newsletter for a 10% discount on your first class with Club Ed.

You can go at your own pace with classes intended for self-study. If you prefer instructor feedback, try an instructor-led class. Or, choose a combination of self-paced and instructor-led classes. And don’t forget to check out the certificate program, designed to prepare you to offer paid developmental editing services for novelists.

If you’re a beginner, get a quick start on understanding what developmental editing is, what you need to know to begin, and how to read like an editor. If you’ve never seen an edited novel manuscript, try the Naked Editing class, where you can see the process of developmental editing unfold.

If you’re an established professional who wants help solving a thorny issue, pull up a beach chair. Many Club Ed classes are meant for experienced editors.

Editors of any experience level (even none!) are invited to take part in Club Ed Conversations. Once a month, on every second Tuesday, Resort Director Jennifer Lawler joins the forums to talk about developmental editing, answering whatever questions you may have. You must register to join in but registration is free. 

How it works: all classes are online and asynchronous. Self-paced classes can be accessed for eighteen months after purchase and allow you to go at your own pace. If you have a question about the materials, you can ask in the monthly chat. Instructor-led classes begin and end on specific days and have weekly assignments with instructor feedback. The assignments have deadlines and the classes include forum participation but you don’t have to be at a particular place at a particular time to participate in the class. Students from all over the world have taken Club Ed classes. While classes can be taken from anywhere, the Resort Director and Club Ed are US-based and the materials and suggested resources reflect that. All classes are text-based and accessible, but if you need any accommodations, please let us know!

Reach out at for further information about any of the classes or resources.

A few words from Club Ed students:

“[Jennifer’s] advice isn’t just helpful but also pragmatic. She does a great job of showing her students the actual steps that they need to take to strengthen their editing work. She also has a great sense of humor and knows how to write, both of which make taking her courses fun.” – Rachel Lapidow, freelance copy editor and proofreader
“Jennifer is an amazing teacher and mentor. The depth of her knowledge of writing, editing, and the publishing industry shines through. She has a gift for focusing on specific areas that need improvement, and her feedback is clear, kind, supportive, and thorough. And her exceptional intelligence, sharp wit, and compassion make her a delight to interact with. She’s helped me grow tremendously as an editor, writer, and entrepreneur.”Stephanie Marshall Ward, academic editor, social sciences, and fiction editor
“Jennifer is a wonderful teacher. She’s easy to understand, to the point, and motivational. I highly recommend Jennifer to any editor looking for a mentor or teacher to fine-tune their developmental editing skills and market those skills to publishers and presses. You’ll come away with clear and specific action steps to further your career as an editor in the publishing world.” Val Mathews, acquisitions editor/developmental, line, and copy editor/writing coach

Recent Posts

Using Book Reviews to Practice Developmental Editing

To get better at developmental editing you have to do developmental editing! But it’s not always easy to figure out how to go about that. Previously I’ve talked about being a beta reader as a way to gain practice as a DE. And, the self-paced Naked Editing class allows you to follow along as an … Continue reading Using Book Reviews to Practice Developmental Editing

Beta reading as training for DE

Many self-publishing authors look for beta readers to give them perspective on their novels before they go to a professional editor for further help. An author doesn’t need a developmental editor to say the whole storyline is implausible and they yawned from beginning to end. Any reader of fiction can probably relay that information. Doing … Continue reading Beta reading as training for DE

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