Helen Hardt has been editing professionally since 2008, both commercial and freelance. She edits all genres of fiction and non-fiction. She counts among her clients New York Times Bestselling Authors, USA Today Bestselling Authors, RITA winners and finalists, and EPIC winners and finalists. She also offers author mentoring.


I had no idea how much I didn’t know about the fundamentals of fiction writing until my search for an editor for my first novel brought me to Helen. Her insights are thorough and to the point, but always thoughtful. As an established author, she brings both sensitivity and experience to the process, while challenging me to grow as a writer and improve my craft. At the end of the day, I can’t imagine entrusting anyone else to help me bring my books across the finish line, from stories I’ve nursed on my own for months to completed works I can be proud to share with the world. –Meredith Wild,  #1 New York Times Bestselling Author

Helen is an outstanding editor who recognizes ways to make a writer’s words shine while respecting that it is his voice, his characters and his story. She taught me about problems with my writing that no previous editor had found,and she helped make my book an award winner! I look forward to working with her again as she launches her editing and I highly recommend her. –Deborah Schneider, 2011 EPIC Award Winner, 2009 RWA Librarian of the Year

When my editor Helen Hardt left commercial publishing to concentrate on her own career as author and free-lance editor, I thought my heart would break. She’s not only extremely knowledgeable in grammar, syntax, structure (all the classroom stuff), and purging unneeded verbiage, but she’s also gifted at sensing how to strengthen emotion, in my opinion one of a romance novel’s most important areas. Ironically, what Helen taught me and assisted me with can’t be put into words. I just know it showed up on the pages of the books we did together and I hope her talents are evident in the works I’ve done since then. –Tanya Hanson, 2011 Double CAPA Award Nominee

Helen, all your suggestions proved most helpful. Your keen eye spotted numerous areas where I hadn’t maximized the emotional potential of a scene, so crucial in keeping the reader riveted to the story. Adding to that is your impressive mastery of the English language, to polish the work and catch mistakes which other editors missed. Your professional and friendly approach throughout made it a real treat in every way. Finally, you exhibit what some editors falter upon: you actually “walk the walk” in respecting the author’s voice and style and working with the story’s intent. –Gary Weibert

Helen educated me better than any MFA professor did, better than even my most trusted mentors and advisers in the past. Her nuts and bolts support and challenges have definitely taught me so much and made me more confident in myself in ways that will significantly impact my future writing. —Annie Anthony

I’ve used Helen Hardt for four projects now, and she’s been prompt and professional every time. She works with my schedule, including helping me out when I was in a bind. I consider her part of my little publishing team, and I know that I can always go to her with questions or concerns. She’s definitely my go-to person for copy-editing. –Skye Warren, New York Times Bestselling Author

If you dream of writing a book and “getting it out there”, Helen Hardt is just the person you need to help you achieve that dream. Helen was my editor for Fire Eyes, the first book that I ever published. I’m convinced that without her help, that book might still not be published. With Helen’s expert advice and tutelage every step of the way, Fire Eyes went on to become an EPIC finalist in 2010. What an honor! Fire Eyes has received countless wonderful reviews in the two years it has been on the market. Helen is able to “see the big picture” of your story and envision the best way to develop the plot and characters. She really understood what I was trying to do in my writing and offered sound suggestions that I could use. Helen Hardt is a true professional! –Cheryl Pierson, 2010 EPIC Finalist


Editing Sample: 500 words edited so I can advise you which style of editing will work best for you. FREE

Proofreading: Checking text for typos, spelling errors, word usage, and missing words or punctuation. This is not technically an edit, and focuses on the word level. One pass. $.0075 per word.

Copy (Line) Editing: Proofreading plus editing for grammar, sentence clarity, and consistency. Focuses on the sentence level. One pass. $.0125 per word.

Style Editing: Proofreading, copy editing, plus editing for style. I’ll remove any ambiguities, eliminate jargon and cliche, evaluate tone and style, help polish language, and do my best to make sure you’re keeping your reader engaged. I won’t critique your plot or characterization. Focuses on the paragraph level. One pass. $.0225 per word.

Deep (Developmental) Editing: Proofreading, copy editing, style editing, plus a thorough review of the manuscript as a whole. I will check for plot and character inconsistencies and emotional impact of scenes. I will evaluate use of conflict, and make suggestions, if necessary, for additions or deletions to your story. Does not include research or ghost writing. I will give suggestions but I will not do the rewriting for you. This is extremely important because the book must be in your voice, not mine. Focuses on the chapter and whole manuscript level. Two passes. $.03 per word.

Deep Editing and Copy Editing Combo: I will deep edit; you will do your edits and resubmit to me when manuscript is complete; I will copy edit. Three passes (two for deep editing, one for copy editing). $.035 per word (a savings of $.0075 per word.)

Mentoring is based on the writer’s needs. Contact me and we will design a plan that works for both of us. My basic mentoring package is $250.00 per month. This fee includes critique and edit of 10,000 words (2500 per week) plus unlimited email exchange and one phone call/Skype session per month.

Please remember that no editor can guarantee that your manuscript will be completely error free. We are human, after all. My experience and testimonials speak for themselves. I look forward to working with you!

Contact Helen for editing services: helenhardt (at) gmail.com