This is the best time in history to be a writer. But only one thing can help your story stand out: quality. Whether you are a debut novelist, a screenwriter adapting to fiction, or an experienced author tackling a new project, I can help.

As the Novel Consultant for Truby Writers’ Studio and a private Developmental Editor, I mentor both emerging writers and agent referrals. I've helped shape books praised by People Magazine, USA Today bestsellers, Pushcart Prize winners, and Pen nominees.  Over the past twenty years, I’ve taught at the Writers Program at UCLA Extension, run workshops, held seminars and presented talks at national conferences. After graduating from the USC School of Cinematic Arts and earning an MFA in Creative Writing at Antioch University, my focus on structure combines with my study of prose techniques to help me find solutions to your story challenges. As an award-winning author, essayist, and produced screenwriter actively engaged in my own projects, I also understand the struggle.

Here’s what I can help you do:

  • Hook Your Reader from Page One
  • Enhance the Narrative Drive
  • Build Characters that Readers Will Root For
  • Strengthen Your Plot
  • Polish Your Prose
  • Enjoy the Process

Read Leslie's informational FAQ

Leslie Lehr


  • Hourly Consultations

    Are you stuck on a story problem? Choosing between ideas? Need direction on a work-in-progress? Often our passion clouds our view of what needs to be on the page. A one-on-one discussion can save you months of work. Together, we can shape the story that you want to tell.

  • Novel Jumpstart

    Do you have a story idea, but aren’t sure where to start? I can help in four easy steps. First, we’ll discuss your goals, develop your premise, and examine  materials you may already have. Next, I’ll give you assignments to develop the characters and strengthen the structure. Another round of feedback will help you increase the narrative drive, solve prose issues, and identify opportunities to strengthen your story. Ultimately, you'll feel confident to continue on your own.

  • Query Letters

    Want to land an agent or indie publisher? Successful query letters are sales tools with a style of their own. Save time and skip the learning curve so you can focus on the important part: the manuscript.

  • Manuscript Breakdown

    Have you completed a full draft? Bravo! I will analyze it for opportunities to strengthen the structure, increase narrative drive, deepen the characters and POV, and hone your personal style. Then I’ll offer specific suggestions of how to do it in a way that reflects what matters most to you. My goal as a developmental editor is to help you make your story shine with advanced prose techniques and a page-turning plot. A detailed contract will outline my services, including light line editing, in-depth written report, and a follow-up phone call. Price is based on word count/estimated hours.