Hello and welcome! I’m Jo Thompson.

I’m a developmental editor and story coach for authors of fantasy and other speculative fiction.

Bio Pic - Jo Thompson - The Unread Story - Developmental Editor of Fantasy


I’ve been thinking about the inner workings of stories since I was a kid reading The Lord of the Rings to my younger brothers. I fell in love with the fantasy genre followed by speculative fiction in general and went on to study literature and writing at University of Iowa. As an editor and coach, my interest is in helping writers craft stories that live, stories that transport the reader. Learn more about me.

Working with an editor in the development stage can take your story to the next level, so it’s best to choose someone who gets your vision and with whom you can develop a good rapport. Whether we’re working on a mindset shift to get you over a block in a coaching session or shifting the order of scenes in a developmental edit, my focus is on supporting you in your writing journey over the long term. If working together is the right fit, I’ll get to know your story world as intimately as you do and be there for every book. We’ll start off with a Google Meet session to chat about your story and what you’re looking for in an editor. I can provide some encouraging and actionable suggestions for you right away.

Contact me to start a conversation!

… spot-on, encouraging, and constructive(Jo) helped spark my motivation to continue and finish by deftly pulling out the diamond I was hoping was hidden there somewhere. She knows her writing craft—and she knows writers and how to bring out the best in them.”

— Ellen Cordery

The Unread Story - Developmental Editor of Fantasy - Ellen Cordery Testimonial

“Jo was both my editor and teacher through the process, and I have learned so much from her which has significantly improved my writing. If she is willing, I will, without a second thought, use her again in my future novels.”

— Mike McKinnon

Mike McKinnon headshot - Testimonials - The Unread Story - Developmental Editing of Fantasy

Put Your Story Out There

I love working with first-time authors! Whether you’re planning to query agents, self publish, or go with a small/indie press, it’s helpful to have someone in your corner who has been there. Ask me about authors I’ve worked with who made the leap to publication.

“The unread story is not a story; it is little black marks on wood pulp. The reader, reading it, makes it live: a live thing, a story.”

— Ursula K. Le Guin

Services ↗

Find out more about how we can work together and pricing.

Contact ↗

Have a question? Or want to set up a chat about your story? Send me a message!

Testimonials ↗

Read what previous clients have said about working with me.