Guest Post: Interview with Shelby Bunker

Guest Post_ Interview with Shelby BunkerThe Value of an Editor.png

This week I have a special guest post for you guys! I had the opportunity to interview Shelby Bunker, freelance editor and creator of The Writing Pal. Here we talk about the value of hiring an editor and other writing resources. Enjoy!


Tell us a little about yourself.

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My name is Shelby Bunker, and I have been writing ever since I was a kid. I love spending time with family, doing puzzles, going on walks, and eating chocolate! I currently have two finished first drafts of two different novels. Someday, I will be a published author.

How did you get into editing?

English was always my best and favorite subject. I knew I wanted to study literature in college, so I majored in English with a minor in editing. My creative writing classes and editing classes were my favorite. I’m a word nerd and obsessed with grammar! I had planned to get a job working for a publishing house or a magazine, but I got married and had a baby. So now I am a blogger and freelance editor! Which is the best, because I get to hang out with my little man (he’s 8 months) all day and work during his naps or when he is in bed.

Why should writers hire an editor?

Such a good question! Writers are so close to their own work, things that make sense to them might not make sense to others. And some writers have amazing stories to tell but they may not have the same degree of knowledge that an editor has. This SHOULD NOT keep anyone who wants to write from writing. An editor can help fix grammar and punctuation. They can even help with bigger picture stuff like flow, organization, and clarity. There is so much an editor can do! They are a great tool for any serious writer.

What services do you provide as an editor?

I do a bit of everything! I’m best at editing fiction, but I’ve done
technical writing, eCourses, and as a blogger myself I know how to edit
and format blog posts.

For any editing project I offer substantive and copyediting services. Substantive editing is looking at the organization and content. The big picture. Copyediting is more focused on grammar and punctuation. I do beta reading too. For more information, you can check out my services at

What are some of your favorite writer resources?

This one kind of depends on what you write, so I’ll try to give some general answers. But since I write YA fiction, I’ll focus on that. I love the Chicago Manual of Style. If you write a different genre or medium, figure out what style guide you should adhere to. Having a good dictionary is also a must. I like Merriam-Webster’s Collegiate Dictionary (I own the 11th edition).

My favorite books are Anne Lamott’s Bird by Bird and Lisa Cron’s Wired for Story. I also love Facebook support groups. Writers Helping Writers is a good one for any kind of writing.

However, my absolute favorite resource is my writer’s notebook. I designed it myself. I’ll be selling them mid-June, fingers crossed, and it is the most helpful writing tool I own. I write down everything and anything I think might be a story idea or useful in a scene. It keeps me observing the world around me. It helps me always have something to write about. If you are interested in having your own writer’s notebook,  at the end of this post you can sign up to receive updates and information on the product launch:

Thanks again for stopping by to talk about editing!

To follow Shelby, be sure to check her out here.

Until next post,



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