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Susan Hughes

Toronto, ON M4S 1S8
Primary contact: 


Written your 1st, 10th, or 25th draft of your children's book manuscript and need a manuscript evaluation, developmental edit, or a substantive edit? Want help with your pitch or query letter? Searching for a story coach?

Require a writer or a developmental editor for K to 12 curriculum content? 

Please get in touch! I am an experienced editor and writer of children and young adult books, including trade books (fiction and non-fiction), educational resources (language arts, science, social studies, and history), and curriculum-linked articles and stories. 

Recent editing and writing non-fiction and fiction subjects: From Inuit teacher lessons, the Canadian suffrage movement, and Catholic religious teachings to homes around the world, Spanish architect Antoni Gaudi, and South African wildlife preserves.

Editing and writing clients: Many first-time and experienced writers; various companies and organizations, including Canadian publishers (Pearson, Nelson, McGraw-Hill, Scholastic, Colleges Ontario, Teach, Inhabit Media, etc.) and American publishers and writing-editorial services (Words and Numbers, Houghton Mifflin, Reading Plus, Gallopade, Jump Start Press, Kirkus Editorial, Artful Editor, etc.).

Editing and Coaching Testimonials

" ... Susan also provided constant encouragement to ensure I didn't give up, being a first-time author. I believe Susan's dedication in finessing the early script played an important role in helping me eventually find a publisher for my picture book. Thank you, Susan!" 
- Komal Singh, author of Ara the Star Engineer, a picture book (Page Two Books, 2018) and an engineering program manager at Google; Kitchener-Waterloo, Ontario, Canada

"Susan was a fresh pair of eyes for my chapter book manuscript. She was able to help me flesh out the characters that I loved, and help the reader to love them too. Her feedback was clear, concise and very helpful." 
Melanie Mosher, children's writer and author of Fire Pie Trout, Fifth House (2014); Nova Scotia, Canada

"Susan Hughes is a very supportive and encouraging writing coach. She is honest, thoughtful ... and is never critical without being constructive. Her gentle nudges over the year ...  kept me motivated. I've got a better manuscript than I ever could have done on my own. I recommend her wholeheartedly without reservation." 
Gary Schwartz, author of The King of Average (Bookstrope, 2015), winner of Kirkus Best Indie Books of 2016 and Huffington Post's Best Self-Published Books of 2016; North Bend, Washington, US

"Susan's insightful questions and suggestions were invaluable in making Loose Strands and its characters come alive. Her manuscript evaluation and substantive edit made sure we were hitting the right notes for our middle-grade audience. She was professional, flexible (especially important with our interactive middle-grade adventure novel app) and willing to talk through anything that needed reworking." 
Mark Moyes, author and developer of Loose Strands, an interactive adventure novel app; winner of Best Children's App at the 2015 Digital Book Awards; Toronto, ON, Canada

"When I contacted Susan, I wasn't totally sure what I wanted or what I needed. I just knew I needed help with the draft of my first novel for adults. Susan put together a custom package for me because it turned out I needed a little of everything. The publisher loved Susan's edits, and I ended up adopting most of them. I will use Susan in the future, for my sequel to this novel and other manuscript edits." 
Holly Smith, author of "Culmination" (Mason Marshall Press, 2016), Oregon, US

"As a first time author and illustrator of a middle grade graphic novel, I was both grateful and impressed with the level of insight and careful attention to detail that Susan provided in her critique. The suggestions she offered and questions she put forward were all carefully considered and made their way into an improved version of Once Upon Utopia. Thank you!"
- Rupy Bhogal; Toronto, Ontario, Canada

"Susan Hughes has critiqued three of my picture-book stories in the past year. With her comments in mind, I did my revisions and sold all three! Susan's insightful comments help bring a project closer to acceptance. In the competitive world of children's book publishing, one needs such incisive assistance."

Monica Kulling, author of over 25 picture books, such as Spic-and-Span: Lillian Galbreth's Wonder Kitchen (Tundra, 2014) and Mister Dash and the Cupcake Calamity (Tundra, 2013); Toronto, ON, Canada




Editorial Skills

  • Consulting and manuscript evaluation
  • Developmental or project editing
  • On-screen editing
  • Online editing
  • Rewriting
  • Structural and substantive editing
  • Stylistic editing
  • Writing


  • Blogs
  • Books, children's and young adult
  • Educational materials, general
  • Teachers' guides
  • Tests and assessment materials
  • Textbooks, elementary and high school


  • Aboriginal people
  • Biography
  • Culture
  • Family
  • History
  • History, Canadian
  • Literature
  • Sciences, general
  • Social sciences
  • Society, general