I’m Pam

The Detail Devil

Editing Services for Researchers

Are you an academic researcher searching for a professionally trained and experienced academic editor to copyedit, format or proofread your manuscript? Great! Make yourself a cuppa and take the weight off — you’ve come to the right place.

I provide editing services to researchers in the social sciences, particularly education. I work with researchers just like you — copyediting, formatting and proofreading books and chapters, doctoral dissertations and master’s theses, journal papers, research proposals and reports, and much more.

Have a browse around my website to see how I can help, and contact me if you have any questions.

About the Detail Devil

Professionally trained, experienced academic copyeditor, providing editing services to researchers in the social sciences, particularly in education.

Editing Services

View details of the services I offer, including copyediting, proofreading, manuscript formatting, thesis and dissertation editing, and reference formatting.


Client Testimonials

Read testimonials from my many happy clients at all stages of their careers and across a broad range of research areas.



Check out a snapshot of my work: books and chapters, journal articles, conference papers, research reports, research higher degree theses, research proposals and reports



Your questions answered: How much will it cost? What’s the process for submitting a manuscript? When do I need to schedule dates? What are your payment terms? Do you have guidelines for editing theses?

Devilish Details: Blog

Fiendish Tips for Writers and Editors
Useful resources, tips and hacks: Word, academic writing, self-editing, APA Seventh, manuscript preparation and much more …


Edited manuscripts

Cups of coffee

Client Testimonials

Pam is the most effective and the nicest detail ‘devil’ you could hope to find. She finds bugs, missing references, commas that should not be where they are and spaces begging to be rescued with a meaning-enhancing comma. Pam fixes actual problems and notices potential ones. She asks for your opinion and gets your approval before she makes changes, but I came to see that she is always right. Pam copyedited two of my research reports and improved the presentation logic, readability and prose in deep ways. I recommend The Detail Devil, but really Pam Firth, without any reservation. She’s great.

Prof Joseph Lo Bianco Language & Literacy Education, University of Melbourne

Your feedback was incredibly helpful. I could have worked on this for another 4 years and not thought about language and formatting to the extent you have been able to convey. I wish [supervisor] had recommended you earlier, but I am glad I have had the opportunity to work with you. Thank you again for all your help. Your knowledge, support and expertise is fantastic.

Andrew McAlindon Doctoral Candidate (Mathematics Education), University of Melbourne, Australia

We owe Pam (The Detail Devil) immeasurable gratitude. As our copy-editor, Pam’s valuable insights, attention to detail, and professionalism shone throughout the project. We are forever indebted, and readers will witness her ‘special touch’ in every chapter of this handbook [The Palgrave Macmillan international handbook of women in outdoor learning, 2018].

A/Prof Tonia Gray and Prof Denise Mitten (Eds.), Western Sydney University, Australia, and Prescott College, United States

Pam is the most detailed and thoughtful editor I have ever worked with. Her service is incredibly focused and timely, and her comments meaningful, gentle and filled with valuable resources. Her copyediting skills are exceptional and her talent for catching inconsistencies astonishing. Her approach was respectful, collaborative and knowledgeable. I have learned a tremendous amount of information and appreciate her service beyond words.

Lenka V. Studnicka Doctoral Candidate (Sustainability Education), Prescott College, United States

I thoroughly recommend the Detail Devil. Pam assisted me to finalise submission of a book manuscript of over 130,000 words [Assessing Mathematical Literacy: The PISA Experience, 2014, Springer]. She has an excellent command of English, including the finer points of grammar. She set up the styles for our Word program to simplify the formatting task and to deal with references, figures, tables and indexing. Pam is a master of academic style manuals and finds answers to complex referencing questions quickly and accurately. She is indeed good at detail and tracks it through the manuscript. Best of all, Pam is able to achieve just the right balance between making a decision and referring a decision to you. A pleasure to work with.

Emeritus Professor Kaye Stacey (Mathematics Education), Graduate School of Education, University of Melbourne, Australia

Pam provided a truly fantastic service with helping me get my PhD thesis to a point where I was really proud and ready to submit it. In the last couple of months, it's unbelievably stressful but to know that you have such caring, professional and detailed support in Pam makes it all so much easier. I've even learned how to use the semicolon after all these years! Honestly, I couldn't recommend her work highly enough. Thank you!

Clare Dallat Doctoral Candidate (Outdoor Education), Western Sydney University, Australia

Passive Voice: When is it the better choice?

Many style guides recommend using active voice wherever possible, but is passive voice acceptable, and if so, when might it be a better choice than active voice?

How to Make the Most of Word’s Custom Dictionary

This blog post outlines the benefits of creating a custom dictionary for each unique writing or editing project, followed by step-by-step instructions on how to create, add/edit/delete a word, make default, change the language of and transfer your custom dictionary to another person.

APA Seventh: What’s New? 20 Changes You Need to Know About

The APA published the seventh edition of its publication manual in Oct 2019. So what’s new? This blog post highlights changes from the sixth edition, including reference to the manual’s section numbers and links to resources.

How to Eliminate Wordiness: 7 Fiendish Tips for Clear, Succinct Writing

Writing clearly and succinctly is important for communicating effectively to your intended audience, and to do this, economy of expression is key. This blog post gives 7 Fiendish Tips for eliminating wordiness, resulting in clear, succinct writing.

A Guide to Working with Word’s Track Changes + 5 Fiendish Tips to Use Them More Efficiently

This blog post guides you through the basics of turning Track Changes on and off, choosing what to show as markup, viewing the changes to your text in different ways and accepting/rejecting a reviewer’s recommended edits.

How to Apply, Modify and Create Word Styles with Confidence

This blog post shows you how to confidently apply consistent formatting throughout your document using Word’s in-built styles, modify styles to suit your needs, and create new styles from scratch.

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