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What readers say about the books

Undercover Mage

Kaaren has created an exquisite impression of a time when river dragons were respected, to keep a balance in the environment. Racing dragon boats honoured the dragons, and paddlers felt ‘the essence of the dragon’ infusing their boats. This is an inspiring story for all current and any would-be paddlers!

Marian Matti, sweep, Nature Coast Dragon Boat Club, Moruya

I really enjoyed this story. I highly recommend it to anyone who loves epic tales full of mystery and intrigue, with a touch of romance. This story has all that, and a whole lot more. Read it now. You won’t regret it.

Wendie Daniels, Romantic Suspense Author and finalist in Romance Writers of Australia’s Sapphire

A delightful and beautifully written novel that will appeal to a wide range of readers, whether fantasy fiction aficionados or not. A stunning and believable world of river boat racing, provincial heroes, mages – self-serving and altruistic – and majestic dragons. Everyone loves a good romance, and Undercover Mage does not disappoint as Everand and Lamiya battle against the odds, and their mutual attraction. I want more! Thank goodness the author is writing a trilogy.

Gail Tagarro, Accredited Editor, The Book Writing Coach

I just love the world you have created, and the complexity and ambiguity in the characters.

Garry Thorpe, fantasy reader

The Prophecy of the Sharid Trilogy

A dusky-eyed hero who is not himself, a dashing maiden in lilac riding side-saddle, a sultry desert woman, a kindly chameleon, grim Sarod warriors and a plot to unleash a deadly demon lord … Sutcliffe’s trilogy has all the elements you love in fantasy, plus twists and turns, soul searching, identity crises and surprises around every corner. A great romp.

Sarah Endacott, Orb speculative fiction magazine

The realism with which Prince Kered’s situation is tackled is a revelation, and makes compulsive reading. It makes you want to smack the books over the heads of critics who say fantasy is all cliché wish fulfilment. Sutcliffe has found her voice as a writer. And what a powerful voice it is. It’s scary to think where she might go from here.

Trudi Canavan, author of The Black Magician Trilogy

What editing clients say

I thought I had finished my novel. I loved it, my friends and family loved it. I sent it to a dozen publishers but none of them took any notice. I was stuck and couldn’t see what the problems were. Then a friend recommended Kaaren.

The first thing Kaaren did was point out how my synopsis was turning publishers off. She edited the entire manuscript with comments on every page, and put a running commentary on plot, character, style and language at the end of every chapter. As an English teacher I thought I knew all about grammar and punctuation. Instead, I learnt so much just by following her edits. Most importantly, because of her questions about plot and character, I found a gaping hole in the middle of my novel which required a small but serious re-write. She also highlighted little mannerisms which were derailing the plot, such as using ‘but’ far too much. In straightening that out I have developed a stronger, crisper writing style.

Best thing I ever did was send my precious manuscript to Kaaren.

Christine, author, South Coast NSW

I have worked with Kaaren Sutcliffe on a number of manuscripts, dating back to 2004.

Kaaren is an intuitive, thorough and diligent editor and manuscript assessor. Her structural editing skills are excellent and her advice is thoughtful yet direct and precise. What I appreciate the most is that she puts herself into the spirit of the manuscript and ensures that your thematic concept, characterisations and overall direction are in accord with your stated aims and goals.

In addition, she works to schedule. That is, she is prompt and works to an agreed time. Your manuscript arrives back with a thorough mark-up and specific and defined recommendations for improvement, along with appropriate praise if she feels it is so deserved.

I would recommend Kaaren and her Just So Words Writing and Editing Services. She is a fine and thorough analyst.

Charley, author, Goulburn NSW

I first met Kaaren Sutcliffe at an ‘Editing for Writer’s’ workshop many, many years ago. She gave me my first lessons in revision and self-editing. I have known Kaaren professionally for nearly fifteen years as she has always been very focused, very productive and strategic. She has provided proofreading and editing services in the past, as well as manuscript assessment services.

More recently, Kaaren edited my fantasy trilogy and she did a great job for me. She pointed out areas where I could improve my work, helped with dialogue, structure, and even pointed out missing bits of the story. The bits that should have been there but weren’t. She helped me to develop as a writer and helped get my three manuscripts fully edited and over the line into publishable books that I could be proud of.

I thoroughly recommend her for both fiction and non-fiction. Kaaren is also an excellent communicator and diligent in communicating timelines and issues with editing projects.

Donna, author & publisher, Canberra

I have worked on and off with Kaaren for more than 15 years, editing both fiction and non-fiction, and as staff editors at the Australian National Audit Office. Kaaren has also read and given feedback on some of my own manuscripts.

Kaaren is one of the best editors I know. She has that rare ability to see both the forest and the trees—that is, she has a talent for seeing and solving problems within the ‘big picture’ of structure and flow, but also misses nothing when it comes to the small details that support consistency and correctness.

She always offers plenty of practical suggestions and is willing to put time into discussing work with authors. This personable guidance is particularly helpful for first-time authors. I have always found her comments insightful and useful.

Kaaren is also a time- and task-manager par excellence. She adheres strictly to deadlines and juggles multiple tasks with consummate ease.
I would have no hesitation in recommending Kaaren’s work to anyone. She is a true professional.

Maxine, editor and author, Canberra