Editing Services

Afric McGlinchey received a BA in English literature from Rhodes University, and a post-graduate honours degree from the University of Cape Town. She has over twenty years’ experience as a freelance editor  and has worked for a number of publishing companies and consultancies in Southern Africa and Ireland (including College Press, Longman, Juta publishing, Struik publishing, Wolfhound and Macmillan).She has worked in literary fiction, crime fiction, YA, secondary and tertiary textbooks, non-fiction, children’s fiction and commercial fiction. She also edits poetry and short story collections.

Afric’s editing service includes a close reading of your work, a detailed reader’s report and line by line proof-reading.

I approach a manuscript holistically, assessing the quality of the writing, the structure, use of all five senses and visibility of setting. Depth of character and motivation are important aspects of a novel and I will focus a writer’s attention on these. I also look for glitches in terms of plot, the process of revelation, repetition, stylistic tics and writing that is a little loose – maybe it’s because of my training as a poet, but I like writing to be lean, with not a pick of extra flab. Due to long experience, I can work fast too, and tend to proof-read as I go, fixing punctuation (I’m obsessed about correct use of the apostrophe, for example!) and copy-editing. I also write a Reader’s Report, which will be anything from 6 to 20 pages long, depending on the amount of work still needed to be done.


Please send a sample of your manuscript, with a word count, to receive a quotation.


Testimonial from Paul McNeive, author of The Manhattan Project

After scores of rejection letters from agents and publishers for my thriller, The Manhattan Project, I decided to take the advice of one publisher, and have the book professionally edited. After some searching, I was recommended to Afric McGlinchey. That was one lucky break! Afric did a full structural edit and recommended I delete 18,500 words! I took her advice, which led to a partial rewrite. Not only was Afric eagle-eyed in spotting errors, more importantly, she contributed lots of positive good ideas as to how I could improve the story and strengthen my characters. Several of those suggestions were incorporated in my next version.

Within a week of sending out the new version, two publishers were interested. I signed with Black and White Publishing from Edinburgh, and The Manhattan Project will be published in the UK and Ireland on the 10th of May, 2018. Amazingly, foreign rights have already been selling strongly to countries, including Germany.

Afric was a joy to work with and I have no doubt that her edit made the crucial difference in finally getting published. Thanks again, Afric.

Afric's been a godsend in helping me from the 'I hate this book' stage of writing to that singing on the mountaintops stage. She helped me see the big picture and helped me untangle every knot in the plot that I tied for myself. Her fresh eyes and genius input was crucial in writing this novel and I already look forward to working with her again on the next.

Jax Miller, author of Freedom's Child.

Afric has a talent for incisive and perceptive criticism.  I find working with her a joy. She has a truly broad experience and a keen ear. She polishes the manuscript so it’s the best it can be, while the writer still retains their unique voice.  Afric provides sound editorial advice that is reliable, prompt, honest and clear.  Even more, she is encouraging, and when you look at her own output -– inspiring!  Many thanks, Afric – I look forward to working with you on the next novel!  http://gerhogan.wordpress.com  

Geraldine Hogan, author of The Brotherhood, a crime novel (currently with an agent).

Afric McGlinchey's editing service was a great boost to my failing stamina for writing. She gave me sound advice about how to re-work things, use the characters to the story's advantage, enhance plot-lines and learn how to throw away stuff I was clinging on to.  She is professional in her attitude yet approachable, and she can cut to the chase without damaging self-esteem. Now I take my work more seriously, my writing has progressed massively and I  know that publication is more likely rather than possible. I'd recommend her and I'm sure I'll be using her again for other projects.
Carole McWilliams, author of the children’s book, Derek's Pink Feet.  

I felt that my poetry benefited hugely from the editing services provided by Afric Mc Glinchey. She provided a thorough critique of my poems, identifying both strengths and weaknesses. She also provided clear and concise directions as to how my poems might be improved. I would heartily recommend her services to all poets, for a fresh perspective on your work. I found my work with her hugely helpful and want to go ahead with some more critiques from her.

Doireann Ní Ghríofa
(winner of Wigtown award, Pushcart nominee and first full English collection shortlisted for  Irish Times Poetry Now award)

“Afric's reports are written with intelligence, sensitivity and a thorough understanding of the craft of writing both fiction and non-fiction".

Isobel Creed, Director, The Writers' Consultancy

Afric provided extremely detailed and constructive criticism and advice, including suggested amendments and different approaches to try for many of my poems. In addition to critiquing each poem individually and in great detail (literally line by line), she provided illuminating advice on my general approach. One badly needed lesson I learnt from her was to read as much poetry as possible! Fantastic service.

Tom Moore (winner of the Ballymaloe poetry competition)

Afric is a consummate professional and an inspiring poet and editor. She displays a humility, sensitivity and level of engagement that I have never before experienced. She has a remarkable attention to detail and style. She offers honest and indispensable feedback and also deftly weaves in an impressive knowledge of poetry and other poets. I gleaned so much from her editing input and am already adapting my approach to my work.  

Sarah Byrne (accepted onto Oxford MA Creative Writing programme)

I got fantastic feedback from Afric on manuscript preparation, and objective analysis which helped to identify my stronger poems. I continue to use on a daily basis her key insights about my poetry  strengths and weaknesses.

Colm Scully 
(winner of Cúirt New Writing prize for poetry)

It was particularly gratifying to have someone to read my work and provide the detailed feedback. Afric was very generous with her time and comments made and I feel that I have made progress through this process. I will certainly be looking for further editorial input from her.

Sue Morgan
(Winner of the Venture Poetry Award for her début collection)

Afric's feedback on my poems was both insightful and rigorous. I have also attended a weekly workshop run by Afric, where she used innovative techniques, promoting close observation, making the link from the specific to the global to bring forth original poems. Afric has a lovely way of encouraging and challenging at the same time, aided by a great sense of humour. It's a testament to her mentoring that I was invited to read as one of the Emerging Poets at the Cork Spring Poetry Festival 2014. One of the poems I read had been written during this workshop.

Laura McKenna
(winner of the Edmund Spenser poetry prize)