For questions or booking: jmercerbooks@gmail.com

Full manuscript critique

This is what I like to call “developmental plus.” I’ll provide an overview on what is and isn’t working, suggestions for possible reorganization to help fix what might not be working, an editor letter, inline comments, and any spots I see that you missed an opportunity to deepen or strengthen your story. Line edit habits you lean heavily on will also be noted, along with suggestions on how to smooth your personal prose, but will not be corrected throughout. For an additional $50, I’ll also run two passes of your query letter, once before I read your story (fresh eyes!), and once after (for suggestions on how to make it more specific and intriguing once I know enough of your story to help you pinpoint moments you could better use to entice).

— priced at .015 cent/word

Line edit overview

Your writing only gets better with practice, and a line editor can fix everything for you, or you can learn to fix it yourself. Send me 50 pages of your work and receive back complete line edits, along with a summary of your personal writer tics. Knowing what you rely most heavily on will keep you aware of it going forward, which helps the rest of your manuscript and future work shine.

— priced at $100

Lantern edit

Feel like your story is missing something, but not quite sure what? If you’ve finished your draft or revisions and it’s not quite the page turner you were hoping it would be, I can illuminate what is and isn’t working, along with shining a light any opportunities you might have missed or aspects that could be more deeply fleshed out with this developmental edit. One of my favorite things to do is get to know your world, figure out what you are trying to do, and find ways to help you do it even better. With the Lantern edit, I’ll read for the story, the characters, the setting, description, etc. What you’ll get in the end is overall strengths, new ideas to run with, places ripe for deepening, and an idea of whatever might not be working inside the machinations of your story.

— priced at .007 cents/word

Not only were your words so encouraging, but your feedback was SO helpful!! I loved everything you had questions about or pointed out. I kept saying to myself – that’s an amazing idea! or Yes! That would be such a great scene to add! Your critique was so well thought out and helpful and I am so appreciative. I can’t wait to dive in and work on some of these scenes!

Erica Wynters, author of the In the Desert thriller series

“Mercer is a skilled writer with a keen editorial eye. She reads deeply, and her feedback is both astute and kind. I’ve relied on her insights for several of my manuscripts, and she’s always helped me to enhance what was working, pinpoint missteps, and identify areas that were ripe for improvement.”

Karla Manternach, author of Meena Meets her Match, and Never Fear, Meena’s Here!

“I’ve gone through all of the editorial feedback you’ve provided for both books and I am super pleased… you’ve made my writing much stronger. I love your reports, by the way, that’s a really nice way to identify the bigger, more recurring issues and I particularly liked the comments on style, which were particularly useful and insightful. Delighted you got recommended to me.”

Stuart White, YA fantasy author

“I’ve always been a proud pantser when writing my first drafts. I didn’t believe in outlining or plotting because I thought it’d hamper my creativity. When I participated in the plot graphing workshop, I was hoping to glean a few tips, but I ended up loving the process of laying out plot, characters, and conflicts. I used the plot graph to map out my newest Work in Progress, and not only has it helped me write faster with more sense of clarity, it’s also allowed me to maintain my creativity. Now I’m a proud plotter!”

Kat Abbott, MG humor and horror author

“Mercer’s in-line commentary was enlightening… Never once were her comments condescending – all of her feedback was honest and straightforward and given in the spirit of truly wanting my manuscript to be the best it could be. She’s professional in all her communications. She always let me know where she was in the process and gave estimates of when she’d be finished, and was generous in her availability to answer questions or talk through some of her ideas. I hope to work with her again on a future manuscript.”

Danielle Simonelli, YA fantasy author


I’ve been feet first in this industry for over ten years, have interned at a publishing company where I read submissions and wrote Revise & Resubmit reports, attended numerous conferences – both regional and national, and organized a craft webinar for the local SCBWI that reached into 22 states and 3 countries. In addition to that, my personal work has received Moonbeam and Readers’ Favorite awards. Follow me @jmerceredits for a taste of my editing style and thoughts, or @jmercerbooks for a taste of my own prose and process.

Worried we’re not the right fit?

For $50, you can send me your first 25 pages for a sample edit (line and developmental thoughts, as best I can do with only 25 pages), which will be deducted off your total if you book a developmental plus or line edit overview.

Want something else? Feel free to email me with specifics.

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