What is your background and experience in editing?
Helen spent more years than she cares to count as assistant editor and then editor for a company with a stable of newspapers, magazines and books. She then worked for an Australia-wide newspaper as Managing Editor before realizing that if she worked for ECPI she could actually get paid for doing what she loves most – reading fiction.
How would you describe your editing style?
Australians are characterized as laid back, relaxed, easy going. Helen considers she reflects her nationality in her editing style – giving authors the freedom to use their own voice and follow their own desires about what they write and how they write it, as long as they obey the EC style guide. Her authors write for every ECPI line – Cotillion, Cerridwen Press, Elloras Cave, Exotika, and The Lotus Circle – and in every length from 10K Quickies to 120K Super Plus Novels and Helen thinks this is A Good Thing because it gives her great variety in what she edits.
What is your favorite thing about editing?
I get to paid to read fiction. And between EC, CP, and TLC there is something for every taste.
What are your pet peeves in books or submissions?
Authors who don't read the submission guidelines. No, we don't accept books of 400,000 words!
Authors who get geography and history hopelessly wrong – Google is your friend – use it.
Would-be authors who submit the same book four times with four different titles and without fixing any of the errors in it.
For personal reading, what are your favorite genres and all-time favorite books?
Historicals and mysteries/crime.
Georgette Heyer, Jean M Auel, Jeffery Deaver's Lincoln Rhyme books, Kerry Greenwood's Phryne Fisher books, Lilian Jackson Braun's Cat Who books But I will read just about anything at all.