Crafting Your Story, Your BookSM
From Concept to Composition
BIOGRAPHY – MEMOIR – HISTORY
THEOLOGY – RELIGION – PHILOSOPHY
Manuscript Assessment, Developmental Editing, Copyediting
Five Decades Writing and Editing Christian Non-Fiction
Personally Committed to Your Achieving Your Best Writing
If as a writer your specialty is Christian non-fiction (biblical, historical, theological, pastoral, homiletical, ethical, devotional, or inspirational), or your literary bent belongs to one or more of the conventional non-fiction genres of biography, memoir, history, religion, or philosophy, then I may be able to assist you.
Both of us benefit at the outset from answers to two clarifying questions about your writing project: (1) What specific genre of Christian or conventional non-fiction are you working in? And, (2) which of the following types of editing best describes what you need now, and which possibly later?
• Stage One – Editorial Assessment: You’ve completed your first draft or several chapters. You want a different set of eyes to look at how you’re doing, providing you with an evaluation of strengths and weaknesses along with suggestions for improvement of structure, organization, style, tone, theme, character, voice, point of view, plot, dialogue, diction, and documentation. You want a bird’s eye view of the big picture, including possible alternatives for capturing the reader’s attention, involvement, and expectation.
• Stage Two – Developmental Editing: You’ve completed your unedited narrative and you’re seeking a summary report of the entire project, with explicit recommendations for restructuring and development of the content, including deletions and additions, wording, phrasing, styling, thematization, plotting, characterization, notation, and documentation. You want an editor to apply a wordsmith’s microscope to your text by paying close attention to all of the elements of the composition that need addressing during the author’s further revision.
• Stage Three – Copyediting: You are basically satisfied with the direction and substance of your completed manuscript, yet you need line-by-line, meticulous fine-tuning before you present it, or re-present it, to an agent or publisher, concentrating on the strengthening of prose, consistency of style, precise wording, grammar, syntax, punctuation, spelling, and the use of illustration, metaphor, and analogy. You want to obtain that highly polished version of your work deserving of public display in the bookstore window or distinctive medium in which you plan to publish.
• Stage Four – Proofreading: You’re ready for the final inspection of the formatted and typeset PDF of your masterpiece, correcting last-minute spelling, grammatical, or typographical errors before it goes to print. (My proofreading service is limited to clients for whom I have performed developmental editing or copyediting.)
Whatever stage of editorial service I am able to offer you, I am personally committed to your achieving, with satisfaction, your best writing.
As a published wordsmith and editor I devote my developmental and compositional skills to assist you with crafting your book-length manuscript, article, or speech. I provide manuscript evaluation, developmental and content editing, copyediting, and proofreading.
From beginning to end we work in collaboration as a team. I maintain an open channel of communication with you as a valued client whose writing is of premium importance to me as your editor. I bring five decades of published writing and editorial experience to your project, and I welcome the opportunity to learn what you are passionate about writing.
After reading this page, and in the event you wish to inquire about my undertaking an editorial project on your behalf, please reach out to me via my profile page on the Reedsy editorial services website. Reedsy is the platform through which I normally conduct my editorial communication, contracting, payment, and project fulfillment. If you wish to be in touch with me about a matter unrelated to editorial work, you may do so from the contact page of this website.
About Charles Davidson
My publications include George Buttrick’s Guide to Preaching the Gospel (Abingdon Press, 2020) and Bone Dead, and Rising: Vincent van Gogh and the Self Before God (Cascade Books, 2011), a theological and psychological biography of Van Gogh’s life and art. My professional articles, biblical commentary and curricula, essays, and poetry have appeared in Pastoral Psychology(1)(2), Theology Today, The Journal of Presbyterian History, Adult Discovery, Christian Education Shared Approaches, Presbyterian Outlook, Self Psychology News, and Vox Populi: A Public Sphere for Poetry, Nature, and Politics.
I received a Bachelor of Arts in English, philosophy, and religion from Hampden-Sydney College; a Master of Divinity in biblical, theological, historical, and pastoral studies, and Master of Theology in the history of Christianity from Union Presbyterian Seminary; and a Doctor of Ministry in pastoral counseling and psychotherapy from Garrett-Evangelical Theological Seminary. I served as pastor of Presbyterian (USA) congregations in North Carolina, Florida, Georgia, and Virginia; adjunct instructor of philosophy at Henry Ford Community College, Dearborn, MI, and of philosophy and theology at St. Mary’s College, Orchard Lake, MI; a clinician with Pastoral Counseling Services of Central Virginia in Lynchburg; and undergraduate professor of history and the Darrel Rollins graduate professor of pastoral theology, care, and counseling at Virginia University of Lynchburg. I live in Asheville, North Carolina.