Editor for Hire

I’m available as an editor for hire on an hourly or project basis for publications or individual writers. Contact me at glenn@glennf.com. My specialty is editing technology and science writing, including reported stories, product reviews, and research coverage. I’m based in Seattle (Pacific time).

What can I bring to your publication or writing? An approach that preserves the best of an author’s voice while bringing an eagle eye to weak points from top-level structural issues down to the level of word choice and punctuation. I try to help layer an article, bringing more richness and texture to it, while keeping the language crisp and evocative, tailored to its destination. I like to think of editing as a way to make an author’s words shine brighter and tell a story better and more fully.

I also take a hard look at technical details, testing results, factual statements, and interviews, to make sure they’re used with precision and to the best advantage. I’m adept at identifying parts of a story that need more attribution and support, and willing to make fact-checking calls and perform research as needed.

My Experience

An editor at play.

I've been editing and writing most of my life—I believe I first put a red pencil through words as early as age 9 or 10 working on a student-run elementary school newspaper, while also writing a regular column. As a result, I have been editing in some capacity for nearly 40 years, and as a professional for over 25 years. I’ve worked with many publications and run my own, most recently spending over two years editing what added to up to nearly 300 mostly long-form, non-fiction reported stories and essays for The Magazine, which I owned for most of its run.

In early 2016, I worked as a freelance editor for Mark Harris’s Kickstarter-funded, editorially independent investigation of a crowdfunding campaign for a palm-sized drone that failed to deliver products to almost any backers. I also spent several months in 2015 and into 2016 working as an editor at large at The Wirecutter and The Sweethome, sister sites dedicated to producing deeply researched and tested product reviews with equally deep independence and integrity. I worked on guides about mirrorless cameras, USB battery packs, rain jackets, surge protectors, electric razors, and budget Android phones, among many others.

What My Writers Say

I asked a number of authors who I’ve edited about their experience working with me, and they gave me permission to share their endorsements.

Glenn is one of the very best editors I have worked with. Not only does he scrub copy until it shines, catch errors both obvious and obscure, and ask the most useful awkward questions, he also adds genuine weight and substance to any project he is working on. He’s diplomatic, attentive, rigorous, and utterly focused on quality, even under tight deadlines.
Mark Harris, freelance science and technology writer for the Economist, the Guardian, Scientific American, MIT Tech Review and others.

Glenn is the best editor I have ever worked with. He is prompt, respectful, friendly, energetic, enthusiastic, and demands the highest of standards in the most polite way imaginable. He also has the most complete grammatical knowledge I have encountered and has exceptional attention to detail. I would love to work with him again in the future.
Naomi Arnold, New Zealand-based freelance journalist

I’ve written for Glenn in various capacities on and off for longer than a decade. He’s as good as it gets from start to finish. Need some help finessing an idea so that it’s just the right angle? Just ask Glenn. Struggling to describe esoteric technology in a compelling way that anyone can understand? Glenn will smooth over your rough edges. He’s the kind of editor who hands back your copy and you sigh with relief because your story went from decent to top notch.
Nancy Gohring, freelancer whose work has appeared in Wired, the New York Times, the Economist (Babbage blog), MIT Technology Review and the Seattle Times

Many aspects of my interaction with Glenn now strike me as rare: He plucked my pitch from a blind submissions pile and then provided advice, encouragement, and eagle-eyed edits in equal measure. Whereas so many editors take a slash-and-burn approach, Glenn is an ideal combination of cheerleader and taskmaster, challenging writers to produce their best work but also confident that they can and will. When I hit turbulence, Glenn was the co-pilot, compass in hand, who kept the route smooth and straight. His edits made my voice stronger and clearer and I feel lucky to have worked with him.
Colleen Hubbard, freelance writer and novelist

I always felt good filing a story for Glenn—I knew the draft was about to get a lot better. He’s great at helping to work through hangups on structure and even his small suggestions brought new life and clarity to every piece I worked with him on.
—  Gabe Bullard, journalist and digital editor at National Geographic

Glenn Fleishman is the kind of editor I love to work with: He has high standards and focuses on what’s best for the piece, but always leaves room for the writer’s voice. He also gives good assignments; when I wrote for The Magazine, I always felt that Glenn did a good job of assigning pieces around a theme, but without ever publishing a predictable roster of pieces on a given topic.
Matthew Amster-Burton, author of Pretty Good Number One: An American Family Eats Tokyo and co-host of Spilled Milk podcast

Glenn edited a dozen of my feature stories for The Magazine, and I learned how to be a better writer in the process. Glenn was always honest and direct in the editor/writer relationship, which is valuable; I never worried about what the final cut might be like, because the lines of communication were always open. (With other editors, I’ve often found ex post facto edits that show up after going to press.) Five stars. Would write for again.
Chris Higgins, author of The Blogger Abides; his work has appeared in This American Life, the Atlantic, and mental_floss.

Glenn is a writer’s dream editor: His guidance makes your arguments stronger, your sentences pithier, and, most importantly, he keeps you from being a danger to yourself and others. And all this while making you think the best suggestions were all your own idea!
Erin McKean, founder of Wordnik.com, former editor-in-chief of American Dictionaries for Oxford University Press

Glenn came out of nowhere and launched himself to the top of my list of favorite editors. He treats his writers fairly and with respect, winning their loyalty—and their best pitches—in return.
Joe Ray, food and travel writer and photographer and author of Sea and Smoke

Glenn was an excellent editor to work with on my story “Paging Dr. MacGyver: The rise of DIY medical devices” for The Magazine: proficient, professional and personable. I highly recommend his services.
Julian Smith, journalist and author

Glenn Fleishman is, simply put, the best editor with whom I’ve had the pleasure of working. While working together creating content for The Magazine, he made the editing process a truly collaborative one—and made it enjoyable and educational for me as a writer, enabling the core of the story to come out while being sensitive and true to my style, pacing, even sense of humor. Furthermore, on a larger scale, the work he did every two weeks putting together a coherent and cohesive narrative that ran through each issue of The Magazine, with the disparate writers’ voices still standing out yet all seeming of a piece, was wonderful to see.
Saul Hymes, MD, pediatrician and medical writer

As a first-time writer, Glenn provided me invaluable insight into what works in publishing. His light touch in identifying what worked and—most importantly, what did not—was not at all intimidating and resulted in a level of work I could never have achieved on my own. I appreciated Glenn’s patience and precision. His guidance made me a better writer.
Chris Krupiarz

Banner image courtesy of Stumptown Printers (Portland, Ore.), which has a nicely functioning Linotype hot-metal typesetting system.