Perceptive Editing for
Heartfelt Fiction

Photo by Jan Kahánek on Unsplash

Fiction can be messy. We pour our hearts into complex plots and conflicted characters without knowing, exactly, where our hearts are taking us. When we feel trapped in stubborn plot holes, chaotic climaxes, or I-can’t-quite-tell-why-this-feels-so-slow doldrums, we can sometimes wonder if we will ever reach what our hearts were longing for.

But we can reach it. With the help of a friend’s perceptive eye and experienced hand, we can see again the heart of our story, waiting to emerge, waiting to shine.

Call Me Laura

Hello, my name is Laura Baumgarten, and I am a developmental editor who greets each story with the awareness of a highly-sensitive mind and the empathy of someone who has had a brush or two with trauma. My specialty is helping the heart of your story shine, aligning the foundations of your novel into the rich, resonant story you have been waiting to tell.

How Developmental Editing Can Unlock Your Story

Developmental editing deals with the the bones of your novel—plot, character, and theme. I offer two developmental services: a full developmental edit and the more concise editorial assessment. Both of these services will give you a deep dive into the foundations of your novel, helping you to

  • level-up your plot to help readers engage with your book on a deeper level,
  • clarify character arcs so that they naturally fuel both plot and theme,
  • and make your theme accessible, authentic, and empowering for your intended audience.

With either of my services, you will receive written guidance, a one-on-one video consultation, and a book-map tailored to the needs of your novel. I cannot wait to help you finish unveiling the story your heart has been searching for.

What My Clients Are Saying

Laura is an insightful editor who offers feedback that helps enhance your story while also guiding you through the revision process with nourishing and empathetic notes and advice. She offers the invaluable balance of capable and clear feedback with a kind and understanding approach—I’m so grateful for her thorough and thoughtful edit letters, and I’m sure you will be, too.

–Kaela Rivera, author of the award-winning
Cece Rios and the Desert of Souls

“You’ll feel like someone believes in your story and cares deeply for your characters in an honest way. Laura’s a wonderful listener whose advice is informed by a deep desire to understand and to help, and I’d trust any of my work in her hands.”


“Laura has a deep understanding of story structure and character and is able to explain everything in a way that feels personal and manageable. . . . Her insights provided me with a new perspective on my manuscript I would have otherwise missed out on.”


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