I needed developmental feedback on my YA novel, so I sent my first 10 pages to four freelance editors as a pilot project. Sione's initial critique and enthusiasm made for an easy choice. Sione helped me work through a MAJOR draft overhaul that took about a year. We agreed on a schedule and went through two rounds on each quarter of my manuscript. Zir feedback was exactly what I needed - beyond what I had received from my beta readers. Sione asked questions that helped me clarify my characters' motivations and internal arc, and also suggested reordering scenes for building tension. Ze saw the "forest" when I was too focused on each leaf of every tree. Sione would highlight favorite lines and give reactions in the track changes comments that were "happy nuggets" that I would re-read when I had low moments. Working with Sione changed something for me as a writer - not only elevating my craft, but reinvigorating my belief that this story would be published. Sharing the news with Sione about my book deal was one of the best moments in my path to publication. Miigwetch (thank you), Sione!
Angeline Boulley, author of Firekeeper's Daughter (Henry Holt Books for Young Readers/Macmillan, Spring 2021), represented by Faye Bender at The Book Group
I can never thank Sione enough for everything she has done for me and my writing. Sione has an amazing vision and sharp, well-honed editorial skills. She wrangled my runaway manuscript from a genre-straddling mess into something worthy of winning first place in six Romance Writers of America contests (including a Best of the Best distinction in the IGO). Not only did she whip that bad boy into shape, she also taught me invaluable skills and helped me grow as a writer. It saddened me to end my relationship with Sione and only did so because I now have a literary agent. I highly recommend Sione to anyone who’s looking for an editor who will dig their heels in, take the time to get to know both you and your story, and will leave you with a manuscript worthy of recognition.
Evie Drae, author of All Your Broken Pieces, winner of 7 RWA awards in 2018 including Best of the Best in Indiana's Golden Opportunity awards, 2019 Golden Heart finalist for Romantic Suspense, represented by Eva Scalzo at Speilburg Literary
As one of the Pitch to Publication winners in 2016 (P2P16), I won a full developmental edit with Sione to ready my manuscript for the agent round at the end of the competition. From the very beginning, Sione was so enthusiastic and encouraging about my writing and my book that I began to more fully believe in my own work and ability. This was the first time I had shown my completed manuscript to anyone, and Sione’s feedback was both uplifting and incredibly insightful. Her edit notes helped me to refine the plot and voices of my characters. With her input I pushed myself further as a writer than I ever had before. At the end of P2P16 I had a full request for my manuscript from a literary agent. Sione’s edit was early in my search for an agent and the book did go through more changes, but it was Sione’s belief and encouragement that was instrumental in proving to myself that I was capable of more than I ever thought. Many of her editorial suggestions were so insightful that I continued working on them long after the competition ended. On the basis of much of her insight, the book went on to have many more full requests and eventually that long-awaited offer of representation. I highly recommend the investment in Sione’s editorial services if you want to find out what you are capable of as a writer and discover the true potential of your manuscript.
Tabitha Bird, author of A Lifetime of Impossible Days (Penguin Books Australia, June 2019), long listed for the 2017 Mslexia novel competition, represented by Nicole Payne at Golden Wheat Literary,
I met Sione when I was her runner up for #RevPit 2018. I realized she would be the perfect editor for my contemporary fiction novel. After receiving her editorial letter, comments, and then talking with her on the phone for an hour, it was like finding an editorial soulmate. What Sione has (and it took me a while to figure this out) is an innate sense of emotional continuity. Of course, she knows the brass tacks of structure inside and out, but what's even better is her ability to know WHEN and WHY emotional beats should occur in character arcs. This belies an emotional intelligence that she's apparently too humble to market - so I'll do it for her :-) Long story short: Hire Sione as your editor. You won't be disappointed.
I'm so grateful for everything you've done to make this story what it is now and it feels like I've come leaps and bounds from where I started. You've been fantastic at communicating with me through the process whether via email or over Skype and I feel like you have such a strong grasp of the story and characters. It's been an immense pleasure!
The insight Sione brought to my first fifty pages and darkest moment [in a Partial MS Critique] helped me immensely in ensuring they were as effective as possible. Her examination of the connectivity between these two sections of the book helped me bring greater depth to these moments, something I'm also extremely grateful for. Sione's most salient critique put me in a position to perform a deep-level examination of my antagonist's presentation, which helped me transform this antagonist from a been-there-done-that to a been-there-WAIT-WHAT-NOW?! I definitely recommend Sione to any writer, but especially those of sci-fi.
Entrusting my manuscripts to Sione is one of the best things I’ve done yet as a writer. Sione’s thoughtful feedback consistently enables me to strengthen my fiction as well as more deeply appreciate what’s working and what isn’t. Sione’s comments gave me the clarity I needed to refine a story collection into a more compelling form, which was then accepted by a small press that I’m delighted to be working with.
No superlatives are adequate to convey my admiration for Sione Aeschliman’s editing skills. Sione understood my novel, Incognolio, way better than I did myself—having written most of it in something of a trance—and enabled me to carry out a crucial revision of the manuscript and to craft a satisfying ending.
Thank you for your insightful and honest critique. It enabled me to strengthen both the content and style of my writing.
I won a full developmental edit by Sione Aeschliman through the ShoreIndie contest on Twitter. I'm not going to lie, while there were amazing prizes for those that continued in the contest, my biggest desire in participating was to win developmental editing, and particularly editing with Sione. I was not disappointed. Sione took on the project as if it were her own, without ever overshadowing my own style and voice. She conveyed to me both the strengths and weaknesses of my work with clarity and encouragement. Sione not only understood the personalities and struggles of each of my characters as well as I did, she also understood their interactions, the world they inhabited and the dynamics of each scene. With her help, I was able to streamline my plot, focus my characters, and better convey the theme and message I wanted in order to create more impact behind the ending and the tension I needed going into the next book. If you are going to invest in your writing at all, I highly suggest Sione.
Loved working with Sione on my manuscript. She made me dig deep to clarify my characters' motivations, pulled out plot holes where I was certain there were none, and presented solutions and opportunities for follow-up that made the revision task a less stressful process. Because my manuscript deals with sensitive subject matter, I appreciated her ability to point out where my language wasn't as non-offensive as it could be.
Raimey Gallant, author of The Alibi Network, shortlisted for the 2018 Crime Writers of Canada Unhanged Arthur Ellis Award
Sione articulated my book's milestones and theme concisely. Her advice enabled me to improve the areas that were working and confidently delete what had to go. Kind, warm, and generous, Sione has a teacher's heart. I enjoyed learning from her.