PEGGY CAMPBELL has been editing nonfiction books for more than two decades, working for both top university presses and trade publishers, and several authors return to her for each book they write. She works as a developmental/line editor/substantive editor, copy editor, and proofreader, and is an expert user of the Chicago Manual of Style/Turabian.
Her areas of expertise are history (especially American history), including biography, memoir, and autobiography; journalism; and politics and government, public affairs, and public policy; and equine subjects. She also has extensive experience editing in such disparate fields as African American, American, gay, gender, and women’s studies; business and advertising/marketing; cultural anthropology; law; and social work.
Edited books have won a number of awards and named honors, including New York Times Notable Book of the Year; the Tankard Award; Choice Outstanding Book of the Year; National Jewish Book Award; Choice Outstanding Academic Title—and those are the ones she knows about. She has been privileged to edit forewords by such authors as John Kenneth Galbraith and Morely Safer. Campbell’s own work as a reporter and that of her reporters was nominated for several Pulitzers by various newspapers.
Her standards are high, and her motto is “Never give a critic a free lunch.” Her attention to detail is ferocious—authors are amazed by her ability to catch discrepancies, inconsistencies, and redundancies hundreds of pages apart. Her favorite compliment from an author? “You make me sound like me—only better!”
Genres: African American, Anthropology, Gay/LGBT, History, Law, Memoirs/Biography, Politics
I’m your basic all-around generalist writer and content editor. Most things interest me, and if they interest me enough, I write about them. I’m firmly convinced that a good writer can write anything well, and I hope my career proves that. I’m ready to help you with yours.
In the twenty-odd (very odd) years since I first realized that I was more articulate with a pen than with my mouth, I’ve written just about everything a writer can: gags, letters of character and recommendation, book and music reviews, press releases, poetry, short stories, novels, non-fiction, how-to, a play, software user manuals, web content, marketing copy, brochures, flyers, queries, book proposals, academic papers, academic theses, you name it. I’m intimately familiar with technical writing, having worked as a technical writer/editor for ten years. I’ve even published my own e-book about fiction marketing (100 Great Places to Sell Your Short Stories, Both On and Off the Web), which also includes pointers on basic manuscript mechanics and submission.
I’m educated as a historian and anthropologist, so when I write non-fiction I tend to stick to those subjects, although I have a wide range of interests and can write authoritatively on just about anything after conducting the necessary research. With fiction, my first love is science fiction/fantasy, though I’ve dabbled in mystery and mainstream as well. In addition to my e-book, I’m the proud author of hundreds of published non-fiction articles, both in print and on the web, as well as two published SF stories. My non-fiction work has appeared in many of the major U.S. history magazines, including America’s Civil War, Military History, Wild West, Old West, American History, and Persimmon Hill.
I’m not an agent and can’t replace one, but I can certainly show you ways to make your copy more pleasing to an editor’s eyes.