Doing your own editing feels like stumbling in the dark without a flashlight. You’re so close to your own book that it’s impossible to see the flaws.

But what if taking one online writing class could make you less dependent on editors, sharpen your skills and instincts, and help you to save money? 

In Book Editing Blueprint, your mission is to learn how to do a thorough developmental, line edit, and copyedit and to create a solid action plan. By the end of this course, you’ll have prepared a detailed editorial report and will be armed with a simple self-editing checklist to guide you through your revisions.

You’ll learn through 10 easy-to-understand modules that get straight to the point.

This class isn’t just a bunch of articles and videos strung together. There is a syllabus, order to the program, examples, practice quizzes, and bite-sized action steps that nudge you closer toward your goal.

It’s a proven system that outlines what every fiction and creative nonfiction author should do before approaching an editor. That way when you’re ready to hire a freelance editor, you’ll get much more value for your money and should receive a high level edit rather than one filled with general beginner advice.

If you’re like most writers, you have lots of responsibilities and limited time to spend on your manuscript. Let’s get that book finished as efficiently as possible.

Hi, I'm Stacy.

I teach the Book Editing Blueprint online writing course, helping fiction and creative nonfiction authors who need guidance on how to edit a book. 

My goal is to save beginner and intermediate writers from overwhelm, giving them strategies to simplify the editing process so they can save time and money. I’m the author of ten published books, a freelance developmental editor, and an award-winning journalist. I’d love to be your guide.

As a freelance editor, I’ve helped hundreds of authors with their projects, working with beginning writers and those with contracts at large publishing houses including Kensington, Harlequin, and Amazon’s Kindle Scout program.

I’ve also taught workshops for organizations including Savvy Authors, Sisters in Crime, and numerous Romance Writer of America chapters, and been a panelist and guest critiquer at the New England Crime Bake conference. As someone who has been in the book publishing trenches since my teens, going through many ups and downs while I fine-tuned my craft, I’d be honored to help you on your writing journey.

  • Embark On The Path

    Is your dream to land an agent and publisher? Do you want to indie publish, but fear negative reviews?

  • Save Time & Money

    Do book editing prices make your heart race? Are you uneasy about investing in a book that might not sell?

  • Get Clear Action Plan

    Does your story have flaws you don’t know how to fix? Do you suspect it has weaknesses you’ve missed?


Accolades Beyond My Expectations

Ron Bay, Jr. Young Adult Writer

“Because of @stacyjuba, freelance editor extraordinaire—who, like a personal trainer, pushed me to my limit and pulled out of me the very best I had to offer—Lost Highway has received compliments and accolades beyond my expectations.”

An Invaluable Resource

Joan Carney Paranormal Romance Writer

“As a fledgling writer, your editing services have been an invaluable resource for me. The educational links you provided as well as your helpful and encouraging suggestions are precisely what I needed to help make my little story blossom into its full potential.”

I Feel Lucky To Have Found Stacy

Kimberly G. Giarratano Paranormal Young Adult Writer

“Stacy is fan-flippin-tastic. Her suggestions for improvement are spot on. This was my first major self-publishing endeavor and I feel lucky to have found Stacy.”
  • Go Through Self-Paced Multimedia Lessons

    Enjoy 10 engaging modules with quick quizzes and practice exercises.

  • Complete Simple & Effective Action Steps

    Fill out a workbook designed to uncover the weaknesses in your novel.

  • Follow A Proven Editorial Blueprint

    Use your editorial notes and 25-page self-editing checklist to rewrite your novel.

Course Curriculum

  • 1


    • Getting Started Tips from Stacy

    • How to Navigate This Course and Class Outline

    • Choose Your Own Adventure & Workbook Download

    • Bonus Lesson: How to Apply Creative Techniques to Your Nonfiction Book

    • Before we begin...

  • 2

    Module #1: Character Blueprint

    • Lesson 1: Thematic Statement

    • Lesson 2: Character Arcs

    • Lesson 3: Antagonists

    • Lesson 4: Supporting Characters

  • 3

    Module #2: Structure Blueprint

    • Lesson 1: Three-Act Structure

    • Lesson 2: Time

  • 4

    Module #3: POV Blueprint

    • Lesson 1: Point of View

    • Lesson 2: Third Person

    • Action Step: Point of View Quiz

    • Lesson 3: First Person

    • Lesson 4: Omniscient and Second Person

    • POV Action Steps

  • 5

    Module #4: Show, Don't Tell Blueprint

    • Lesson 1: Description

    • Lesson 2: Backstory

    • Free Way to Find Experts

    • Lesson 3: Nonverbal Communication

    • Nonverbal Resource

    • Show, Don't Tell Quiz

    • Lesson 4: Microsoft Word and Google Docs Find Tutorials

  • 6

    Module #5: Dialogue Blueprint

    • Lesson 1: Basic Dialogue

    • Lesson 2: Advanced Dialogue

    • Lesson 3: Dialect and Internal Monologue

    • Dialogue Quiz

  • 7

    Module #6: Pacing Blueprint

    • Lesson 1: Purpose

    • Lesson 2: Tension

    • Lesson 2b: Bonus Prologue

    • Lesson 3: Chapter Endings

    • Pacing Quiz

  • 8

    Module #7: Line Editing Blueprint

    • What Is Line Editing?

    • Lesson 1: Word Choice

    • Lesson 2: Wordiness

    • Lesson 3: Style and Clarity

    • Lesson 4: Line Editing Recap

  • 9

    Module #8: Copyediting Blueprint

    • What Is Copyediting?

    • Lesson 1: Spell and Grammar Checks

    • Spell Check/Grammarly/ProWritingAid Video Demos

    • Lesson 2: Tricky Words and Phrases

    • Tricky Words Quiz

    • Lesson 3: Common Grammar Mishaps

    • Grammar and Punctuation Quiz

    • Lesson 4: The 4 Cs of Copyediting

    • 4 Cs of Copyediting Quiz

    • Copyediting Action Steps and Resources

  • 10

    Module #9: Hiring Editors and Final Proofreading

    • Lesson 1: What You Should Know About Hiring Editors

    • Lesson 2: Microsoft Word and Google Docs Track Changes Tutorials

    • Lesson 3: What You Should Know About Proofreading

  • 11

    Module #10: Putting It All Together

    • Resource: Putting It All Together Examples

    • Resource: Your Book Editing Blueprint

    • Continue Your Journey With Me

    • Survey

  • 12


    • Workbook for Modules 1-9

    • Transcripts

    • Recaps

    • Want to Be an Affiliate?

    • Helpful Blog Posts & Videos (Updated Regularly With New Content)

    • Find A Critique Partner Discussion Forum

    • Shortcuts for Writers Facebook Group Bonus Forum

    • 7 Simple Steps to Nailing Your Book Blurb

    • Promo Opps For Blueprinters

  • 13

    Bonus Module: Foil the Frustration—Motivation Strategies for Authors

    • How to Stay Motivated and Tame the Frustration

    • Final Thoughts From Stacy: Becoming A 10 Minute Novelist

    • Inspirational Wallpaper—Believe You Can and You're Halfway There

Bonus Material

You'll get access to a Resources section regularly updated with helpful blog posts, videos, and podcasts; emails to keep you motivated; free book promotion from Shortcuts for Writers; and the below extras.

  • Foil The Frustration

    Before sitting down to edit your novel, it’s important that you’re in a positive mindset. You'll get a bonus module with plenty of motivation and tips to help you persevere and reach the finish line.

  • Bonus Lesson

    Do you write creative nonfiction like memoirs or essays? 'How to Apply Creative Techniques to Your Nonfiction Books' will show you how to approach the lessons with a creative nonfiction mindset.

  • Bonus Facebook Forum

    Students can seek accountability partners, critique partners, beta readers, and cheer each other on in a special networking forum inside the Shortcuts for Writers Facebook group.

Book Editing Blueprint Reviews

5 star rating

A Terrific Editing Course

Sharon Shea

Stacy's Book Editing Blueprint is all you will need to become proficient at editing your own writing. I wish I'd taken this course earlier in my writing - it...

Read More

Stacy's Book Editing Blueprint is all you will need to become proficient at editing your own writing. I wish I'd taken this course earlier in my writing - it would have saved me hours of struggling with grammar corrections and re-writes. The content is all-inclusive. The course covers everything from grammar to sentence structure, continuity to characters. It's a course that will benefit both fiction and non-fiction writers. The basics are for writers of any genre, and the lessons about what keeps a reader interested apply equally to non-fiction authors. Stacy course leaves the student with lessons learned, a wealth of resources and a path toward perfection in editing your work.

Read Less
5 star rating

Get fully developed characters and a deeper plot

Kat Caldwell

The last thing an author wants to hear is that their book fell flat or that their characters were shallow. This course takes you deeper into your story than ...

Read More

The last thing an author wants to hear is that their book fell flat or that their characters were shallow. This course takes you deeper into your story than you have ever been before to make sure you never get a review that says the story was flat! Stacy asks just the right questions that make you think deeper about your characters and the plotline and the subplot and how everything comes together. She's like your private writing coach helping you remember all the little things and make sure you reach your potential on both the big AND little things. I own several writing books, plot books, have taken other courses and yet Stacy's Book Editing Blueprint is the best one yet. I highly recommend it. In fact, I kind of wish I had it for my first two books!

Read Less
5 star rating

Makes editing feel easy

Theresa Hall

I’m halfway through the course. It breaks the topic down in such a way that it makes editing feel easy. The work book is such a great tool and can be used ag...

Read More

I’m halfway through the course. It breaks the topic down in such a way that it makes editing feel easy. The work book is such a great tool and can be used again and again on each project. I’m learning skills that will have a long term impact on my writing.

Read Less
5 star rating

Book Editing Blueprint

Zerry Greenwood

I cannot stress enough how much you don't know about what you don't know until you take the course. I am not blowing smoke up your arse. This course is the b...

Read More

I cannot stress enough how much you don't know about what you don't know until you take the course. I am not blowing smoke up your arse. This course is the best thing I have done for my writing career.

Read Less


  • If I take this course, does this mean I won’t need to hire a freelance editor and my book will be ready to submit to agents or self-publish?

    This course is designed to help you cut down on editing expenses, not eliminate them. Experienced authors typically need a couple rounds of developmental editing before they hire a copyeditor or proofreader. Less seasoned writers usually need at least 3-5 rounds of developmental editing. The writer makes the suggested changes and sends a new version to the editor. You could be paying from several hundred dollars to a thousand or more per round of editing. Most writers will only invest in one or two cycles due to the expense. This leaves them with a manuscript that has potential, but isn’t ready for submission to an agent, and definitely isn’t ready to share with the world. By taking this course and doing the work, you will have a great foundation in self-editing. You can do the earlier rounds on your own and ultimately submit a much stronger manuscript to your freelance editor. Then the editor can focus on the meat of your story and help you to put it over the edge rather than send you an overwhelming letter outlining a bunch of flaws you could have caught yourself. I don’t recommend publishing a book without getting professional editorial feedback, even if you’ve taken the course.

  • Is this course for beginners or experienced authors?

    Book Editing Blueprint is for beginner writers who have just finished, are working on, or are thinking about writing a fiction or creative nonfiction manuscript. It is also for intermediate authors who have had a couple of books published, but their editors keep sending them back to the drawing board for multiple rounds of rewrites and the editing process still feels overwhelming. You want to turn in well-developed, polished manuscripts and get to a higher level. If you’re a seasoned author who has been working with editors for a while and your manuscripts are clean and well-developed for the most part, then you probably don’t need this course. If you’re considering becoming a freelance developmental editor, then it could be beneficial as it will review everything you should be looking for in your clients’ manuscripts and give you a step-by-step checklist to follow.

  • Can’t I just hire you as an editor without taking the course?

    Yes, but . . . I wish I’d had this course when I was starting out as a writer, and even now I use the blueprint when revising my own books. My years of working as an editor inspired me to create this course, as nearly all my clients could have saved time and money if they’d had this baseline training. If we worked together, I’d tell you the same stuff anyway, except it would be crammed into a long editorial letter. Trust me, you would be overwhelmed. That’s what made me create this class, as I don’t like overwhelming my clients. Video tutorials, written lectures, examples, quizzes, and practice exercises are a much more efficient way for you to master these concepts, and the workbook will help you apply them to your manuscript. Then you’ll be in a much better position to work with an editor, either me or someone else. Note: If you enroll in the class, I can’t guarantee taking you on as a client as at certain times I’m booked or closed to submissions. You’re welcome to check in with me, but please be assured that having this course under your belt will help you when working with any developmental editor.

  • I'd love to take the course but I haven’t started writing my novel. Should I wait to get this class till I have a finished rough draft?

    If you’re in the early stages of writing a story, Book Editing Blueprint will teach you to put all the foundational pieces in place from the very beginning. You’ll learn how to develop your theme, flesh out your characters, craft your plot, maximize each scene, and improve your writing technique. While the final blueprint is geared toward editing a book, the lessons are applicable to all fiction writers regardless of what stage the project is in. If you’re still writing your first draft, the course will give you valuable tools to get you on the right track. If you’re starting from scratch, in a way you’re actually lucky because you’ll be able to avoid the mistakes a lot of people make. By catching weaknesses early, you’ll save time on rewrites later. Wherever you are in the process, the course will give you the solid foundation that your novel needs.

  • Is there anyone this course isn’t for?

    This course is appropriate for novelists and short story authors regardless of genre and style. If you’re a children’s book writer, I’d recommend it for middle grade and YA fiction, but not for early chapter books or picture books. Nonfiction writers: This class isn’t for you if you write academic, technical, or self improvement books. If you’re writing a book filled with people and places such as a memoir, biography, or essays, and you’re depicting events through scenes, the course would inspire you to take a more creative approach with your nonfiction so that you write more vivid descriptions, make the people you’re writing about three-dimensional, use an engaging style, and write tighter. Bear in mind, however, that the course is geared toward fiction authors, so you should only take it if you are interested in enriching your project with fiction-writing techniques. There is a bonus lesson on how to apply the concepts to your creative nonfiction project. As a reminder, I won’t edit your book during this course but will teach you how to do it. This course is not for you if you’re expecting feedback from the instructor and/or a critique group. Also, this course isn’t for you if you are expecting overnight results with little effort. I wish I could wave a magic wand and have your book rewrite itself, but unfortunately you have to put in the effort. I have made the learning process as simple as possible, but you still need to have the drive to complete the lessons and follow the blueprint to edit your book.

  • Will you be present to give editing feedback and support? Will I get critiques from class members?

    As far as getting support, I will absolutely be there to answer questions and be your cheerleader! You can post questions in the private discussion forum and I will be sure to respond. However, there is no instructor editorial feedback. If I were to give critiques on every student’s writing, I’d have to charge a lot more for the course due to the time commitment, and I wanted to keep it affordable. The goal is for you to develop your self-editing skills so you can save time and money on unnecessary rounds of editing. After going through the class, you’ll be amazed at how many flaws you’ll see in your manuscript. You’ll also have the tools to fix these weaknesses and escalate your project to the next level. Regarding peer critiques, this is not a critique group. Since students sign up at various times and it’s self-paced, each person is working on a different lesson. In the bonus Facebook forum, (a special unit inside the Shortcuts for Writers Facebook group), there are threads where class members can network and connect with partners for outside critiques, but a connection isn’t guaranteed.

  • Will this course teach me grammar and punctuation rules?

    The copyediting unit gives an overview of the most common mistakes. It will help you to improve your skills in this area, but it won't make you a copyediting expert. This class focuses on developmental big picture concepts such as plot, characterization, and point of view; scene level tips such as improving dialogue, description, and pacing; and line editing tips like word choice, style, and tightening. We discuss the most common grammar and punctuation mistakes, and I’ll share the best resources I’ve found for cleaning up your manuscript, but delving too much into it would be overwhelming. Copyediting could be a whole separate course, and it’s best taught by a copyeditor. As a novelist, your priority should be on writing an evocative, compelling story with a strong backbone. Once you’ve done that, you can focus on fixing the nitty gritty grammar and punctuation. If you correct those errors too soon, before you rewrite and revise, then your copyedits could become obsolete. My goal with the copyediting segment is to give you some tips and help you to evaluate your skills in this area. Some writers have a strong grasp of grammar and can manage without a copyeditor and/or proofreader if they have a good developmental editor and eagle-eyed beta readers. Many writers, however, have trouble with grammar and punctuation, and no class or self-study will replace their need for a good copyeditor and proofreader—at least not for their first few books.

  • How is this course any better than reading books and articles about writing and editing?

    You could take the time-consuming DIY approach and gather information from different resources, or you can cut through the clutter and let me tell you exactly what you need to know and how to apply it to your book. Not only that, you’ll also get a proven system to follow. Books about writing, articles, podcasts, and YouTube videos can give you information, but if you want to transform your manuscript and escalate your writing to a higher level, you need to learn how to apply what you know. That’s what Book Editing Blueprint will do for you. It’s full of tips, examples, and activities that will equip you and inspire you to apply the concepts to every aspect of your novel.

  • Q. With 10 modules, are you sure I won’t get confused or more overwhelmed?

    You would get much more overwhelmed if an editor tried to condense all of this advice into one letter. I know what an editorial letter looks like. I’ve received some as a writer, and I’ve written a couple hundred of them as an editor. An editorial letter will have a paragraph or two on each weakness, such as Show Don’t Tell. The editor will give you a couple examples, but there is only so much detail we can go into in a letter and in your manuscript’s margins. Then we’ll tell you to read a bunch of writing books and articles when all you want to do is fix your story, not wade through a stack of 200 hundred page textbooks. That’s why I created this course. I knew there had to be a better way to help writers, and once I discovered the world of online courses, I found the answer. My 20+ years working as a newspaper reporter, publicist, and medical writer taught me how to break down complex information into an engaging, easy-to-digest format. I’ve deliberately made the lessons short and simple to follow. You’re not going to tackle everything all at once. You’re going to follow a step-by-step implementation plan, rack up small wins, and gradually get all the tools you need to bring your manuscript to a higher level. As long as you promise to follow the lessons in their proper order and complete the worksheets and exercises, I promise to keep you on track. You’ll want to keep going as you’ll see the progress you’re making. Editing becomes much less intimidating when you know exactly what you need to be doing to get results without any wasted effort. Maybe you’ll even grow to love editing like I do, and this course will set you down the road to becoming a pro editor!

30-Day 100% Money-Back Guarantee

I’m so confident that my online self-editing class will help get you results, I’m offering you a full 30 days to evaluate the material to make sure it’s right for you. If you’d prefer not to continue, just let us know within 30 days and we’ll issue you a prompt, courteous refund.

Get Your Free Book Blurb Toolkit

Get the exclusive FREE toolkit 7 Simple Steps To Nailing Your Book Blurb, access to exclusive resources, and a supportive community by joining the Shortcuts for Writers: Editing Made Simple Facebook Group.


Disclaimer: Shortcuts for Writers doesn’t promise any specific results as a result of purchasing this training (eg – you have to put in the work) and any results, testimonials, or figures quoted on this page are not intended to imply guaranteed financial gains.

Privacy Policy: We will occasionally track your web activity on pages owned by Shortcuts for Writers and we will occasionally send you emails related to the course material. In all circumstances, your private data is kept confidential and you can unsubscribe from our emails at any time (except for transactional emails necessary to fulfil our contractual duties).

Terms & Conditions: You have 30 days starting the day after payment is received to preview the course material before your refund period expires. If you request a refund after the 30 day period, your request will be denied.