"I turn to MJ Hyland when I need a fresh, generous, honest pair of eyes on my work... she's a great writer, and edits with the eyes of a writer... I sing Hyland & Byrne's praises from the rooftops."

                        - Sophie Dahl, columnist, director, presenter & author of The Man with the Dancing Eyes and Playing with the Grown-Ups 

"Hyland & Byrne are exceptional editors. They're consummate professionals ... loyal, generous and smart. I recommend them wholeheartedly."  

                    - James Palumbo, author of Tomas & chairman of Ministry of Sound 

What we do

Founded in September 2011, by award-winning authors M.J. Hyland (shortlisted for the Booker Prize, and more) and Trevor Byrne (shortlisted for two major short story prizes, and more), we offer the most comprehensive and professional editing service available online, and lead hugely popular writing masterclasses throughout the UK, Ireland and beyond.
Our team provide appraisals and line-edits of unparalleled detail and depth for novels, stories, flash fiction and essays. Our service is instructive, intelligent, robust and focused on ensuring that you produce writing of the highest quality.

How to use this site

Click The Team to learn more about our editors, and to watch some videos on writing, teaching, performance and more. Behind the Editing Services tab you'll find all you need to know about the work we can do for you: line-editing, appraisals, work on plot, pace, structure, dialogue and more.  Finally, behind the Best Practice tab you can read more about The Editing Firm's approach to professional editing.
Note, there is a contact form at the bottom of each of these pages: to get in touch, simply write your message and hit send. Or, if you prefer, you can contact us at

News, workshops and success stories


Our spring 2022 schedule

After a long busy period working with some fantastic writers (and dedicating extra effort to getting our own new novels closer to completion!), we're delighted to announce that we have space in the Editing Firm's spring schedule for two (possibly three) new projects. So, if any of you writers out there (no matter your experience level) would like us to work with you on your novel or short stories (of any genre), please contact us - we're raring to go!


If you want the kind of editorial help you won't find anywhere else, send us a message via the contact form on the relevant page of this site (there's one each under the Appraisal: Novel, Ready-To-Submit and Appraisal: Short Stories pages) or directly at


Publication: Mick McCoy's new novel, What the Light Reveals

"Maria Hyland and Trevor Byrne, of the Editing Firm, delivered insightful and detailed edits over two drafts. I doubt this story would have interested my publisher without them. Maria and Trev taught me much about novel-writing craft; the guano and top dressing for my words."

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penguin Literary Prize Mick McCoy Hyland

Mick McCoy's new novel shortlisted for the Penguin Literary Prize

Penguin Random House has announced the shortlist for the 2020 Penguin Literary Prize, worth $20,000. Mick McCoy's ace Catch a Panther, a novel Trevor and Maria were delighted to help Mick edit, is on the 6-writer shortlist. Richly deserved, Mick! 

The prize, now in its third year, aims to find and develop new Australian authors of literary fiction and nonfiction.

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More publication success: The Science of Appearances by Jacinta Halloran

Jacinta Halloran's third novel, The Science of Appearances, is out now, published by Scribe. Trevor and Maria worked with Jacinta (Appraisal: Novel) before publication: we're delighted to have helped a talented writer and a compelling, thoughtful, vivid novel on their way. 

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Short story success: trio of prestigious competition placings for Erika Banerji

In just four months, the wonderful and wonderfully talented Erika Banerji, who has been working with Maria on the craft of writing short fiction, has seen her stories longlisted for the Lorian Hemingway prize (August, 2018), the V.S. Pritchett Prize (October, 2018) and the London Short Story Prize (November, 2018). 

An incredible run and entirely deserved - expect to see more of Erika soon!

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Congratulations! Publication success for Jenny Valentish and Jo Ely

Huge congratulations to Jenny Valentish, whose debut novel Cherry Bomb has been published by Allen & Unwin (Trev, M.J. and Anneliese had the pleasure of working with her on her manuscript as part of our Ready-To-Submit service), and to Jo Ely, whose debut novel Stone Seeds is published by Urbane Books (Trev and M.J. worked with Jo on an early draft of her novel). 

Hyland & Byrne recommends...

A playlist of writing-related videos we think you might like...  

"MJ Hyland and Trevor Byrne are wonderful editors: careful, passionate, exacting. Their detailed appraisal enabled me to return to my manuscript with a better understanding of its potential and a new set of ideas with which to realise it."

              - Jacinta Halloran, author of The Science of AppearancesDissection and Pilgrimage 

"Without the wisdom and advice of the appraisal service, my novel wouldn't have achieved this success. Their editing advice absolutely transformed my writing and I recommend them to all writers without hesitation." 

          - Barbara Henderson, author of the acclaimed children's novels Fir for Luck, Punch and Wilderness Wars 

"Hyland & Byrne are generous and honest, and combine real teaching and encouragement with incisive, clinical editing."

          - Phil Kearney-Byrne, winner of the Francis McManus Prize, longlisted for the Sunday Times EFG Private Bank Short Story Award