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I am Maria Carter, a highly experienced and highly qualified Senior Editor and a true Publishing Professional. I have spent my entire career in the industry - around 35 years in total, the first 15 of which were spent in employment in diverse publishing environments, and the subsequent 20 as a freelance. During my long career, I have expanded my skill-set to meet my clients' growing needs, so that I now support them in every aspect of publishing. With all of these skills and extensive industry knowledge under my belt, it was only a matter of time before I set up as a publisher in my own right, which I did in 2011, as Swan & Horn.

The bottom line is I know pretty much everything there is to know about publishing , way beyond the editing stage, which is where I started out in the 1980s (and which is still at the heart of my business). Nowadays, I share my time between helping self-publishing authors and businesses, and making my own books. It's an exciting and rewarding mix - possibly the best job in the world!  


Who do I work with?

I work with authors of fiction and non-fiction who intend to self-publish or submit their manuscripts to mainstream publishers, and with businesses who need help with internal, external and online documentation, including promotional materials.

Why work with me?

Primarily because all my clients feel editorially and professionally safe with me. They recognise my industry knowledge, my high standards and my unusual breadth of skills. They appreciate that I can make their lives much easier by running their projects through every stage of the publishing process, and produce all kinds of documents and books extremely well, and to the standard of the very best mainstream publishers out there, who have relied on my services for decades. I also write their house-style guides and carry out the odd bit of training.

What can I do for you?

Through me, my clients can access the full suite of editorial, design and production services required for making books and other documents - from front to back, top to bottom, inside and out, and from first draft to final publication. They also benefit from realistic and honest publishing advice - be their a consultant, in fact, but not at consultancy prices. I believe in empowering individuals by filling the gaps in their knowledge. And above all, I remove uncertainty and confusion, inspire and motivate, and make an otherwise stressful experience not just bearable but enjoyable. 

If you want to delve into my qualifications, background and professional affiliations, look at my About page, and to take a closer look at everything I can help you with, visit my Services page. 


What do Swan & Horn publish?

IIt's all about Education Education Education! I commission a handful of titles each year on health-related topics, mainly for adults - general public and professionals..  The aim is to educate, of course, but also to inspire fresh thinking about challenges that we all face, particularly tricky subjects and those that are still viewed as 'taboo'. I also have a soft spot for the history of medicine. There are some exciting books in the pipeline. Many books are planned for children, mostly fiction (richly illustrated fiction),  that are still educational as they convey gentle wellness messages through their relatable tales and loveable characters.

Do Swan & Horn make good books?

Oh, yes. Top notch. All of our books have a great reputation for their quality, in terms of both their content and their presentation (and because they achieve everything they say on the cover).

To browse our titles, visit Our Books.

What is it like to publish with Swan & Horn?

Frankly, it is a uniquely good experience - you won't find anything like it with a mainstream publisher. And I don't say this lightly! Having worked on both sides of the publishing fence, so to speak, I know what I am talking about and far prefer (and recommend) my way of working with authors. Authors who have been mainstream published before coming to Swan & Horn, repeatedly point out the enormous difference in the relationship between them and the Publisher (me), the Editor (me), the Designer (me) and all the production staff (me). They realise they are on to a very good thing!

To find out more about Swan & Horn's publishing scope, look here.






 My language skills are first class, from the basics to the most advanced aspects of grammar and publishing convention. These high standards are underwritten by my earned member-ship of various professional standard-setting bodies. For more details, see my About page.

As a publisher of really good books, of which I am rightly proud, I want my clients to have that same feeling, which is why I  never cut corners or compromise on editorial standards.  




The degree to which I engage with my clients is highly unusual (a sad truth).

I nurture good working relationships with authors and clients throughout the project and beyond. And because I am the only point of contact for them, no matter how many services are required or where those services lie on the publishing spectrum, I offer an unparalleled level of continuity - no handovers, no cold starts, no unnecessary explanations or re-briefs - and never a sense of being on a conveyor belt.




My extensive understanding and knowledge of the publishing process and industry is available to everyone I work with - an exceptional bonus. I offer the type of advice that
might be expected from a publishing consultant, but
at a 'services' rate.

My clients are free to question me on issues small and large, on points of publishing convention, on design, on streamlining workflow, on marketing, and on smart ways to keep costs down.​





I have been project managing editorial projects since the 1980s when I worked at Taylor & Frances, and I am also qualified as an AGILE  Principles Project Manager. This means I am capable of handling the largest and most complex of projects, including those with multiple authors, across multiple stages and multi-media formats. I not only streamline projects effectively, but strive to deliver the finished product within the agreed time-frame and the agreed budget.




All of my services are provided at very competitive freelance rates, based on those of the CIEP and other professional freelance organisations around the world. Even though I am an Editor Plus (my own phrase), who offers a far wider scope of support than most freelances, to the level of a consultant and including design services, I only charge clients who have their work edited by me at the same consistent standard editing rate.  More details here.

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