Pets Onboard Boats!

Voyaging Pets

Our judges cannot separate the top two stories.

We’ve called in more judges – STILL they cannot be separated.

Voyaging Pets / Pets onboard boats
We’ll be announcing the winners soon – meanwhile, don’t forget we have another competition – your non-fiction story should have a connection with the water... Click here for more details.

What Does An Editor Do?

Meet Our Editor

Belinda Collins, Chief Editor at SisterShip Press, reveals her Editing Ethos

What makes a book enjoyable to read?

Do you like strong, vibrant characters? Do you take pleasure in immersing yourself in a time or place? Do you look for a good a story line that carries you along? If you have found these things in the books you enjoy, there is a good chance that the author has worked with an editor.

I’m Belinda Collins and I’m the Chief Editor with SisterShip Press. That means that I work with SisterShip authors to help them to produce the best work they can. Writing any kind of book is a huge undertaking that requires vision, planning and attention to detail.

“I am an author’s critical friend.”

It is difficult to bring it all together and to deliver it to an audience. I am an author’s critical friend and an advocate for the reader, so that the author’s vision is realised and the reader has the best reading experience we can provide.

Editing Processes

There are two stages to the editing process. Structural editing works on the content, style, and presentation to make sure it is right for its purpose and reader. Copy editing works on the accuracy, clarity and consistency of a document, and includes things such as spelling, grammar, and layout. Of course, the two stages of editing often overlap, and an editor can be asked to do just one or both of these stages.

“…the author’s vision is realised…”

Editors are different to proof-readers who also play an important part in the production process – making sure there are no typographical or layout errors or inconsistencies in the production of the document.

Structural and Developmental Editing

I really enjoy structural or developmental editing – where I work with the author to achieve a strong and consistent narrative, a consistent and clear voice, and pacing that is appropriate to the story. This can involve discussion about whether some sections need to be added or expanded, moved or deleted. It can include recommendations on sentence structure and even choices of individual words. It also requires good people skills. None of us like criticism and authors are understandably very protective of their work. It is after all the product of both inspiration and a lot of hard graft.

“An editor has to remember that it is the author who has creative ownership.”

Sometimes the discussions between editors and authors can be lively. An editor has to remember that it is the author who has creative ownership; but good working relationships with authors are very rewarding.

Belinda can often be found doing something on the water at Batemans Bay in NSW, Australia

Belinda can often be found doing something on the water at Batemans Bay in NSW, Australia

I have always loved reading including a good seafaring adventure.

As a child, I read Swallows and Amazons by Arthur Ransome, in my early teens I spent a hot dry summer reading and re-reading Dove by Robin Lee Graham. My learn to sail books include SisterShip’s Jackie Parry’s Cruisers’ AA. As a history buff I’ve enjoyed Master and Commander by Patrick O’Brien, and I have loved working with Pamela Grimm on Destiny’s Gold. An editor also has to read widely, so I read lots of other things besides. I’m working my way through the classics, try to keep up with new fiction, and I relish a good memoir.

“…and the reader has the best reading experience we can provide.”

Editing is a Dream Job

When I’m not reading or editing, I enjoy rowing, kayaking, and sailing. Editing with SisterShip Press is a dream job. I knew it was right when I looked on my bookshelves and they were full of grammar guides, dictionaries, and style guides together with boat maintenance manuals, guides to cruising and living aboard, and sailing memoirs. This job brings it together, and my plan is to keep editing when I go cruising. All I’ll need is my laptop and an internet connection via my mobile phone. It’s a perfect fit.

Contact the SisterShip team:

“With your Skins whole and your Pockets fat!”

Captain Jane Thorn motivates her crew to work hard and watch her back… but do they?

“All right, men,” she began, “we are finally off and you made a good job of it in the end. I should like to thank you all for signing on. We mean to make a lucky and profitable venture of this trip and see you all home with your skins whole and your pockets fat.”

At this, a cheer went up from the men and Jane had to wave her hands to quiet them. She continued, “We are bound for Cuba as our first port of call. We have a contract to pick up sugar, and will see to loading some for ourselves as well. That should give you something extra in your pay packet if we get a good price.” Another cheer interrupted her speech, and Jane waved again to settle them so she could finish.

“We have heard there may be fever in Havana, so we will make quick work of the cargo when we are there. I fear we may need to limit shore leave if the epidemic is raging, but I aim to make it up to you on the other side. Dawkins and Galsworthy here can be counted on to see you right with the work, and Cookie will keep your bellies well filled. Do your work, do it well and swiftly, and we will all arrive home by and by with gifts for our sweethearts and money to put in the bank.”

Destiny's Gold Historical Fiction

This is an excerpt from Destiny’s Gold – Book 2 is due for release in the New Year… you’d better hurry and catch up with Jane…


Facing Fear Head On

How would you cope?

Facing Fear Head On is a collection of inspirational and practical stories from women on the water.

These true tales of raw emotion and courage will help you tackle fear, cast off the lines, and take heart in knowing you are not alone.

The Book
Created by a short story competition, women around the world opened their hearts and bared their souls.

The Winner
The competition was extremely close, but in the end Jill Carter was placed first with “Paralysed in the Pacific” a terrifying tale, encompassing great courage.

Rudder Remnants!
Rudder Remnants!

“I’m wrenched away from my dreams just after 2100 local time as Paul calls out for me to come to his assistance.”

Bruised but safe!

Bruised but safe!

“When we rise at dawn, we see that the weather gods have decided to throw everything at us…”

Arriving into Nuku Hiva

Arriving into Nuku Hiva

“With less than 200NM to go and obviously sensing land, our avian companion who I’ve named Monsieur Rouge, decides it’s time to leave. He tightrope walks down the starboard rail, makes a strange clacking sound and flies away. We’re alone again…”

M. Rouge

M. Rouge

Facing Fear Head On - new release by SisterShip PressBuy now on Amazon or contact (click here or on the picture)

About Jill: I’ve been a full time blue water cruiser since April 2010 and with my husband Paul, have now amassed close to 50,000NM under the keel of our 48′ yacht, Elevation. Sailing became a retirement goal, and we were blessed to be able to farewell working life in our early 50’s, casting off the lines and living the dream ever since. I hail from Fremantle and have been a member of the Fremantle Sailing Club since 2006. I’m a newbie to writing and in recent times I’ve been really enjoying blogging about both bluewater adventures and each destination we’ve explored – my blog is here.

Facing Fear Head On

A collection of inspirational and practical stories from women on the water.
Gasp, cry and laugh out loud as forty-six women from around the globe reveal their deepest fears and coping strategies while voyaging on (and in) the world’s waterways.
Experience a unique journey and witness the emotional turmoil that fear can create as dreams, and loved ones, are threatened.
These true tales of raw emotion and courage will help you tackle fear, cast off the lines, and take heart in knowing you are not alone.
Not just for women, men should read this too. If you want to take your partner sailing these stories are a remarkable insight into the minds of women as they unfold the secrets to help you – help them – love life at sea.

“Anchors aweigh!” – “Hoist the jib! Helm to windward!”

Destiny is underway, and so is Captain Jane Thorn in – Destiny’s Gold

“The sails filled and they tacked out of the harbor into the Atlantic.”

We are proud to announce Destiny’s Gold is now available in paperback (in the USA – rest of the world following soon!).

Join Captain Jane Thorn and her hearty crew…

“Heave short!” The foredeck crew rammed home the capstan bars and prepared to pull the Destiny downriver until she floated over her port bow anchor. As soon as the tide turned, they would heave the anchor and set sail on a broad reach with the wind on the starboard quarter. It was a tricky maneuver in tight quarters, but would give them a jump on the larger vessels if they could pull it off.
Perched on the near end of the Destiny’s eighteen-foot jib boom, Galsworthy peered down at the anchor chain, waiting for it to draw slack.
“Heave ho!” came the call, and the men bent their backs to the work, pushing the bars around the capstan as one of the hands led them in a rousing chorus of Maid of Amsterdam.
“Anchors aweigh!” rang out as the flukes cleared the bottom and the Destiny began to move with the outgoing tide.
“Hoist the jib! Helm to windward!” The orders were coming fast as Jane watched her crew move nimbly to execute Mister Dawkins’ commands. Over the past week, these seven sailors had come together under the firm hand of the chief, and Jane felt a shiver of pride and anticipation as the sails filled and they began the long tack down the harbor and out into the Atlantic.

4.0 out of 5 stars – Great story!!   (Very few books get a five star rating from me, but this one is close.)
December 2, 2018 – Format: Kindle Edition
I don’t know anything about sailing, but I do know when I enjoy a good adventure story and really feel that I’ve connected to a character. Captain Jane and her crew grabbed my heart and pulled me into her world. The book was very enjoyable and I’m looking forward to reading the next one!

Destiny's Gold Historical Fiction great read