How I became a writer and editor


Of course I haven’t always been a writer and editor, but the signs were there right from the start. I always had a love of words and reading. This has developed over the years into a fully-fledged career as a writer and editor, providing ghostwriting, writing and editorial services to authors and businesses in the UK and further afield.

According to my family, I started talking while I was still really young – at the precocious age of six months – and I’ve been communicating ever since. I wrote my first serialised novel at the age of thirteen. For the most part though, my creative talents were hidden under mountains of coursework until after my formal education ended.


My qualifications include a BA (Hons) degree in English literature, a post graduate certificate in teaching and a CIPR foundation course in public relations.

The first seven years of my working life involved formal report writing. I later worked in various forms of educational research. Subsequently, I spent three years writing Jeremy Paxman-style interviews to enable CEOs to rehearse their media training in front of cameras in authentic style. This was an enormous privilege, very hard work and great fun.

Editorial specialist

After many years’ helping others to perfect their manuscripts and copy, I decided to professionalise and have now gained Intermediate Membership of the Society for Editors and Proofreaders (SfEP). I am undergoing further training towards my next goal of Professional Membership. This ensures that I am ‘doing it right’ and offering the reassurance of a quality service to my clients and differentiates my offering from others’.

Ghostwriter: helping authors to write their books

Having a voracious appetite for reading, from cornflakes packets to history books, via crime fiction and biography, I’d always had the idea that I might write my own book. Then I was approached to write a memoir as a ghostwriter. It’s not an exaggeration to say that that particular project changed my life and Never Say Di was the first of many books that have been ‘born’ as a result of such a collaboration. I can now say that I’ve ghostwritten several biographies, a psychology/design themed book that became an Amazon best-seller, business and marketing publications, together with various fiction and non-fiction genres. Sometimes I even get my name on the cover, which is always a buzz. The process varies, but usually involves face-to-face or Skype interviews, lots of transcribing and then a period of intense writing. Ghostwriting, for me and my author clients, is a joy and a triumph.

My background in PR and marketing

As a natural progression from various writing jobs, during the early ‘Naughties’ I began working with a marketing and public relations agency. Here, I wrote online and offline copy for clients. It was during this time that I began to focus on working as a copywriter. So, in 2010, I set up my business, Sue Kelso Ryan Writer, which enabled me to take on my own clients. As a lifelong learner, I taught myself social media and SEO skills, avidly reading and networking to increase my knowledge.

At that stage, I tackled most things in the course of an average week, from blogs and full length magazine articles to entire websites. Variety is one of the pleasures of the job and I gained experience in copywriting on a wide range of specialist subjects. These include medical, environmental and financial, as well as topics such as travel, weddings and especially hotels and hospitality. When offering to work as a writer and editor, it is fantastic to have had this experience and to be able to pass on the skills learnt to my clients.

Copywriting for my clients

I still take on copywriting work and as an experienced writer and editor I can bring my knowledge and experience of life to the task of writing for my clients. Together we agree a brief and I produce excellent copy to suit the purpose. During the process of writing I adopt the persona of my client’s business – whether I’m engaged to edit a brochure of leisure courses, write a website about a characterful builder or persuasive magazine feature for a new restaurant. I’m happy to review website copy, bring life to your blog or write advertorial to reach out to new customers on behalf of your enterprise.

Why not take a look at the testimonials I’ve received as a writer and editor with clients in Cheltenham and elsewhere? I hope you’ll be encouraged to know that they’ve been pleased with my work.

Pittville Pump Room and bandstand
Pittville Pump Room, Cheltenham

Cheltenham writer and editor

I’m based in Cheltenham, Gloucestershire, UK. Thanks to the wonders of the internet, I have worked with clients in Europe and as far afield as Kenya, Vietnam and the USA. If you think I can help you and you’d like to have a chat, please get in touch. I look forward to hearing from you and learning more about your project.

Sue Kelso Ryan copywriter logo

I very much enjoyed working with Sue Kelso Ryan while she was writing copy for a new website and I’m delighted with the end result! … I would highly recommend Sue and indeed, I hope to work with her on further projects in the future.

Dr Mike Crisp – Jan 2016