Jo has been the perfect developmental editor for my first novel, The Cult of Calladon. She helped me recognize my own strengths and weaknesses, while providing spot-on advice and recommendations to improve my book. Her talent and storytelling expertise made the book so much better than it would have been without her help. Her style and approach are very thoughtful and encouraging, especially to someone like me as a first-time novelist. I absolutely plan to work with Jo again on future projects!

— Roland Drake


Jo is everything I could have ever hoped to find in an editor. She is kind, patient, professional, extremely talented, and enthusiastic—I adored working with her. She took my draft and helped me create something I am proud of. Jo’s skillset is unmatched and I will be using her for any of my developmental editing needs in the future. If you’re at all hesitant, don’t be. 

— Ophelia Wells Langley

Ophelia Wells Langley bio pic - The Unread Story testimonials - Developmental Editing of Fantasy

I cannot say enough good things about my experience with Jo. I had completed a first draft of an epic fantasy novel on my own and needed to get a professional edit. Jo has great intuition and was able to quickly understand my vision and identify the strengths and weaknesses in my writing. She then provided concise suggestions on how to greatly improve it. She was incredibly professional and at the same time relaxed and approachable. 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 - The Unread Story testimonials - Developmental Editing of Fantasy

Working with Jo on the developmental editing for my novel not only made my story stronger, it made me a much stronger writer. After her edits, I am now able to look at my stories and start asking the real questions that will progress my story. I truly believe that my novel, and my writing, would not have come close to the work I released that I am so proud of. Jo’s edits helped me feel confident that the story I was putting out was exactly what I hoped it could be. She saw my vision clearly and knew exactly what was needed to get it there. Her contributions were invaluable, and I cannot imagine writing a novel without her input in the future.

— River Bennet

River Bennet headshot - The Unread Story Testimonials - Developmental Editing of Fantasy

I struggled for several years trying to figure out why my story wasn’t working. Jo quickly identified the problem and gave valuable advice on how to fix it. Her feedback was prompt and clear. I highly recommend her services.

— Carrie Schweiger

Carrie Schweiger Headshot - Testimonials - The Unread Story - Developmental Editor

Jo provided a manuscript evaluation for a book I’ve had inside me for nearly 25 years—but is only now half-written. I’d gotten lost in my own head about the worthiness of continuing, feeling like nothing I’d written so far was worth reading. Her comments and insights on the rough manuscript were spot-on, encouraging, and constructive. She gracefully pointed out a few areas that I knew were weak spots, and gently drew my attention to a couple of other challenges I’d missed. Most importantly, she 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

Ellen Cordery Headshot - Testimonials - The Unread Story - Jo Thompson - Developmental Editor

I had been struggling for quite some time to figure out why my story wasn’t landing the way I wanted it to. Jo immediately identified the problem and gave wonderfully detailed notes on a variety of revision strategies that were tailored to my specific needs. She really knows how to get the best out of writers!

— Brian Forrester


Jo’s developmental edit of my book, The Belle of Oyster Bay, was insightful and incredibly helpful. She pointed out places where I’d repeated myself (a bad habit of mine) and helped me to discover that I had lost a month and a half in my timeline. Now that I know where I am and can eliminate my repetition, the book will read smoothly, and I can continue moving forward with Jo’s pin for my trajectory. If she’s willing, I would use her help again. She has an eye for an author’s work and a heart to help.

— Angela Moody