About Leigh

I earned a Ph.D. in Comparative Literature from Indiana University and taught college literature and composition classes for 20 years. But I’m not that English professor with a red pen who lurks somewhere in all of our pasts! I’m always sensitive to anyone whose writing I’m editing or critiquing.

One of my talents: I can spot an error by glancing at a page. I honed my editing and writing skills throughout many years of graduate school. And I read hundreds of student essays as a college professor.

Maybe there is a streak of perfectionism in me, too, that makes me want to solve the puzzle of grammar and take care of every little detail. You can be sure I’ll give your work the attention it deserves.

I’ve edited academic articles, theses and dissertations, and popular and scholarly books, so I have the experience to address most any need you have in the field of writing.

Many websites offer you cheap prices and an invisible stable of editors—you don’t know exactly who is editing your work. But I can offer you individualized attention.

My Background
I majored in German and political science at Indiana University-Purdue University Fort Wayne, where I received a Bachelor’s degree. I earned a Master’s in German at Indiana University Bloomington. Then I switched to Comparative Literature to do my Ph.D., with a focus on politics and literature. I taught two years at Illinois State University and twelve years at Indiana University-Purdue University Fort Wayne, as well as other institutions.

I served as the copy editor of Clio, a scholarly journal about history, literature, and philosophy that we published in the English department at IPFW. I copyedited hundreds of articles and book reviews. The rewards of editing became clear when authors thanked me for saving them from errors that they said would have made readers howl with laughter.




My Book
I’ve known first-hand a writer’s “suffering.” I wrote and published a book based on my Ph.D. dissertation: ‘This Anguish, Like a Kind of Intimate Song’: Resistance in Women’s Literature of World War II. Against the backdrop of women’s history, I discussed the short stories and novels that French and German women authors wrote about the anti-Nazi resistance.
Link to This Anguish on amazon.com



Books I’ve Edited
I’ve proofread or copyedited about 3,000 pages of book manuscripts—among them, a self-help book, a memoir, a thriller, a fantasy novel, a scholarly biography, and a couple of college textbooks.

I helped a Colorado author get her book on psychology and meditation published. She had received countless rejection letters and was casting about for a new editor. So we worked together on her manuscript via e-mail for several months, reshaping each chapter and each sentence. I gave her advice on potential publishers and refined her proposal. She sent out the revised proposal and some sample chapters, and soon had offers for a book contract from two publishers. Her book is set to be published in March 2011 by O-Books.

Take a look at the meditation book and the scholarly biography here:

The college textbooks: Writing College Research Papers by Kathy Sole, and Introduction to Computer Literacy by Mark D. Bowles (for Bridgepoint Education)

ESL Editing
Another facet of my experience is the editing I have done for ESL authors. For the past two years, I’ve worked as a freelance editor for an online editing service that provides copyediting for ESL authors who wish to publish scholarly articles in peer-reviewed English-language journals. The array of assignments I’ve worked on range from business to psychology to literature to history to telecommunications. I’ve also edited Master’s theses and Ph.D. dissertations by authors from Japan, New Zealand, Chile, the Middle East, Korea, and Russia.

Style Guides and Formatting
I am familiar with the Chicago Manual of Style, MLA, APA, and other style guides. These manuals don’t intimidate me!


Ian Bertolina, IB@BertolinaCRESI.com
Charlotte, North Carolina

Author, The Butterfly Killer

“Leigh gave me great insight into how to tighten the writing and improve the point of view in my first novel, The Butterfly Killer. She also polished the grammar. When I began researching my second novel, she did some amazing research related to it. I plan to have her edit that novel in the near future.”

Matthew Cousineau,
Charlotte, North Carolina

Author, Caldera:The Book of Ixkin

“Leigh helped make the dream of writing a book come true. I am a first time author and needed her editing skills dearly. Not only did she correct things like my grammer, tenses, etc... the cost of her services is really what made things happen for me. I cannot thank her enough. ”

Melissa Lowe, Ph.D., LPC
Denver, Colorado
Author, The Apocalypse of the Mind: Transforming Ego into Stillness of Consciousness

“Leigh brings to an editing project not only impressive skill and precision but also the ability to focus the writer with her comments and suggestions. She elevates the writing venture to a greater level of excellence and the finished product to publish-ready form. My manuscript would not be under contract with a publisher if not for the collaborative effort and the contributions Leigh made as editor for my project.”

Onur Y.
The University of Auckland, New Zealand

“Leigh edited my Master’s thesis in Politics. I liked that she focused on important details in my writing. She finished the work on time, and we had smooth communication with each other.”

Ed Peterson
The Atlanta Social Media Guide

“Leigh was an amazing resource for me as I pulled together the manuscript for my first eBook. Her proofreading and editing were spot on, and she is a master at Word's Markup functions. I highly recommend her services to any businessperson needing a perfect document.”

Leigh Westerfield, Ph.D. | 704.724.8263 | Leigh@writing-works.com

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