AJ Collins Professional Book Editor

“Creativity has always been in my soul. Words and music have been a part of my life from a young age.
I have a firm belief that you should be able to continue doing what you love until the day you die.”

AJ Collins-Author-Editor-Proofreader
IPEd accredited Logo

I am Managing Editor of AJC Publishing, established in 2014. I am an Accredited Editor of the Institute of Professional Editors with an Associate Degree in Professional Writing and Editing, RMIT. I have taken part in many writing masterclasses and workshops since.

My previous roles have included Chief Editor and Writer for Go Festival Magazine and Proofreader for the Victorian Writer.

I am experienced in editing fiction and creative non-fiction (memoir) and am a published author myself.

I was thrilled to be offered a placement in the Hardcopy professional development program for writers in 2018, specialising in fiction, and was fortunate to take part in intensive writing masterclasses; meet with industry professionals, publishers and agents; and network with many talented peers.

One of my novels was shortlisted for the QWC Publishable program in 2022, for which I won a mentorship and pitch opportunity with agents/publishers. I was also longlisted for the QWC Adaptable film and television program. I have been published in magazines and short story anthologies, and have won first prize and several high commendations in the Monash Short Story Writing Competition. My short stories have been read on Radio Queensland and Melbourne community radio.

As an editor, I love helping everyday people with their writing projects. This might be:

– a fledgling author’s first attempt at writing a thriller, sci-fi, romance
– an experienced writer’s manuscript that needs a polish before publishing
– a personal project, meant for friends and family, which has become unwieldy
– a self-help book written to make the world a better place, or for promotional purposes
– a memoir to shed light on a life-changing event

Whichever the case, I provide the same supportive guidance and editing service each project requires to bring it to completion.

As a writer, I enjoy sneaking away to create my own stories and workshopping with my writers group. I’m also constantly reading up on the self-publishing industry, when I’m not writing resource blogs for my website.

My background of thirty years working in the entertainment, corporate, legal and finance sectors have given me a wealth of experience in attention to detail, professionalism and time management.

Work or play, I always have an empathetic ear for authors and their stories.

What do I dislike? Talking on the phone, so be prepared by thorough email communication.

You can read some of my published works here:


Resources for writers

Short stories and articles

My journey through a brain tumour

Ongoing professional development

For editors to stay abreast of changing trends and styles in the writing, editing and publishing landscape, it’s important to keep our skills and knowledge updated. This is called professional development and is a requirement to retain our accreditation.

Below is a list of recent courses and training workshops I have participated in.

31/10/2023IPEdSmall Press Network presentation
18/10/2023AWCAudiobook Course for Authors
18/08/2023UdemyCertificate in ACX Audiobook Production
24/05/2023TaradaleWriters retreat
02/05/2023IPEdStructural Editing - Nicola O'Shea
30/03/2023QWCSimply Synopsis - Michelle Somers
18/03/2023IPEd(Host) Accredited Skills Workshop
08/03/2023ASAWriting Crime with Jack Rony
18/08/2022QWCPublishable - define your genre - Lori-Jay Ellis
11/08/2022QWCPublishable - story structure - Laurel Cohn
04/08/2022QWCPublishable - ask an agent - Jacinta di Mase
29/07/22Dr Gillian PolackMasterclass - story matrices
07/07/22IPEdCopyright - online presenting and training
27/07/22ACT Writers CentreBetween the lines - six-month facilitated literary book group
12/06/22Writers VicMasterclass - pitches - Nadine Davidoff
15/05/22Writers VicMasterclass - publisher submission package - Nadine Davidoff
08/05/22Writers VicMasterclass - synopsis - Nadine Davidoff
28/04/22IPEdFiction - finding bloopers
26/04/22AJC PublishingMasterclass - memoir part 2 (hosted by AJC)
14/04/22IPEdBooktube and the publishing industry
06/04/22AJC PublishingMasterclass: memoir part 1 (hosted by AJC)
31/03/22IPEdSelf-publishing for freelance editors - Rebecca Freeman
01/03/22IPEdFiction world building
15/02/22Wheeler CentreAuthor talk - Salman Rushdie
02/02/22IPEdEditing in and for online environments
27/10/21ReadingsAuthor talk: Hannah Kent
07/10/21AJC PublishingPresentation - introduction to memoir (hosted by AJC)
06/10/21IPEdEditing crime writing - Meg Vann
23/09/21IPEdCopyright and permissions
07/09/21UdemyMasterclass: memoir
03/09/21IPEdCo-host - working with indie authors
27/08/21EditBoostEditBoost mastermind group
24/08/21IPEdDialogue in fiction (hosted by AJC)
11/08/21ASAZoom school appearances for authors
04/08/21IPEdGreat comma debate
16/07/21Writers VicPredatory publishers - Kate Cuthbert
28/06/21IPEd conferenceMemoir masterclass - Pamela Hewitt
23/06/21IPEdNational e-deposit scheme presentation
26/11/20IPEdLouise Harnby - How to make your website better
07/10/20IPEdEditing fanfiction and adaptation
16/09/20IPEdPublishability - disability equality training
15/08/20MWFAuthor talk - Elizabeth Strout
31/07/20Sisters in CrimePanel on crime writing
26/07/20ACESAdvanced PerfectIt
25/07/20ACESImmersive copyediting for sci-fi & fantasy
22/07/20StonningtonGetting published in the US vs Au
10/06/20IPEdWorking with a graphic designer
25/02/20MWFAuthor talk with Neil Gaiman
23/02/20MWFAuthor talk with Margaret Attwood
12/10/19IPEdEditing diverse voices
01/09/19MWFAuthor talk: Don Walker and Paul Kelly
21/08/19IPEdMembership and listing
28/06/19EFAMasterclass - developmental editing
26/05/19StorywiseLive storytelling session
09/05/19IPEdIPEd Melbourne conference
02/05/19MasterClassMasterclass series for writers - Attwood et al
23/02/19Writers VictoriaEllie Marnie: self publishing masterclass (2 days)
22/11/18State Library2019 YA Showcase
15/10/18Wheeler CentreAuthor talk - Anne Summers
11/10/18Hilary CadmanAdvanced PerfectIt
09/10/18Ed VicWhat publishers want
02/09/18Melbourne Writers FestivalAuthor talk - Judith Lucy
17/07/18Wheeler CentreAuthor talk - Veronica Roth
14/06/18Editors VicContracts for editors
07/05/18Wheeler CentreAuthor talk: - Jesse Andrews & Patrick Ness
01/05/18HardcopyHardcopy placement - masterclasses fiction writing & publishing industry
22/04/18Nicole HayesCharacter masterclass
18/04/18Editors VicTax advice & planning for editors
01/03/18IPEdExam preparation talk to new candidates (by AJC)
22/02/18Editors VicFinding work for editors
16/11/17Small Press NetworkIndependent publishing conference
13/09/17IPEdIPEd Brisbane conference
12/07/17Writers VictoriaAuthorpreneurship - Hazel Edwards
09/07/17RMITMentor talk to RMIT students - establishing an editing business (hosted by AJC)
05/11/16Writers VictoriaMasterclass - Advanced YA
25/10/16Writers VictoriaFreelance life
14/10/16Nadine DavidoffMasterclass - structural editing
01/10/16IPEdMentorship - academic editing
27/09/16Writers VictoriaMemoir salon
11/05/16Euan MitchellMasterclass: self publishing
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