About Me

Nice to meet you! My name is Catherine Thorsen, and Carta Editorial Services is my developmental editing business.

My background is in journalism, media and communication, but my passion was always in fiction. After a lengthy detour through the fitness and nutrition industry and then a briefer detour into farming, I finally set out to turn my decade-and-a-half long editing hobby into a full-time job in 2017. Since then I have I have worked extensively with debut authors seeking to develop and polish high quality manuscripts for self-publication and querying.

I now live in a small town in Western Australia with my partner and two cats. When I am not editing and drinking too much coffee I like to curl up with a good book and a cup of tea.


What do you love about developmental editing?
– The first aspect that drew me to developmental editing was the room for creativity it offered. Reading fiction has been my passion since I was a child, but until I started looking into the process of developmental editing I had no idea how much fun creating the material can be! Here I was all this time thinking consuming the end-product was the best bit. What a chump.

My favourite part of developmental editing is watching the product take shape – much like putting a jigsaw puzzle together. All the pieces are there, it’s just matter of finding the right place for each one. There is no greater satisfaction than finding that one piece of sky that has been masquerading as a piece of ocean all along, and watching everything around it fall into place.

What is your editing style?
 – Your voice will always be your voice, I will never try to change that. My aim is to help you improve your manuscript through dialogue and advice based on your ambitions and your needs. This means that you will receive a unique product tailored to you, and that I am happy for you to take the lead if you have a strong sense of how you want this process to work, and happy to coach you if you don’t.

I like to be gentle, but firm in my feedback. I understand how scary it can be to show outsiders your work, of course it is, especially for a debut author. Your manuscript is a part of you often shared with only your most trusted people until now, and I’m a complete stranger. I try my very best to make sure every edit is a positive experience, while still remembering that the ultimate purpose of an edit is to help you improve your manuscript, and this won’t work if I don’t point out exactly where you can improve, and how.

I aim to avoid Author Overwhelm at all times through clear and actionable advice, and a focus on the big picture.

I do not ghost-edit. At the end of the day this is your product and your message. All the words have to be your own.

Do you do the manuscript editing yourself, or do you subcontract it out to other editors?
– I do all the editing myself. I may from time to time pass on advice from other editors or authors that I think will be of help to you, or link to articles from external sources, but in those cases I will make it clear that the material provided is not mine. I will never show anyone your work.

What’s your turnaround time?
– I prefer to work on one project at a time, allowing me to give it the full attention it deserves. I also like to take my time on each project for the same reason. Most of the time this leads to a wait-list. However, this style of working does allow for some flexibility, so if you are in a rush, especially with Post-Query Support, let me know and I’ll see what I can do for you.