Hi, all! I’m Niels Kwakernaak, a copy editor from Israel. Welcome to my website.
Where I came from — The copyeditor who made aliyah
I was born and raised in the Netherlands, where I’ve spent most of my life—until I met my lovely wife on the walls of Jerusalem. After we got married, in 2015, I moved to Israel to start a new life in the Aravah desert. By now, three kids have joined our little fold.
Since I was a little boy, I had a passion for music and arts—I loved painting and playing drums, guitars, and piano; later, I started singing (classical, rock, metal, and everything in between). Books, however, were a mystery to me. I loved leafing through them, sniffing them, posing on pictures with them—but reading them was an idea that didn’t cross my mind. But when Peter Jackson’s The Lord of the Rings hit the theaters, I decided I had to read the books as well. And ever since, I have been a book junkie.
I had been writing stories and essays for most of my life, but now I was beginning to take things seriously. I took writing classes and read every book I could find on writing and editing techniques. When I moved to Israel, I started a job as a copyeditor for a multinational editing company, where I later got promoted to senior editor.
In 2020, I felt it was time to start on my own as a freelancer, and I started Your Best Story.
A professional copyeditor for music-related books and essays
As a singer, multi-instrumentalist, and certified music producer, my main interest in nonfiction editing is—you guessed it—music. I love classical music and metal and (nearly) all that’s in between. I sing classical, pop, and rock music (from a soft falsetto to belting my face off). And besides a performer, I’m a passionate songwriter and composer (see the section Songwriting and compositions).
If you’re a writer in the field of music (music theory, vocal technique, music history—you name it) and in need of a professional copy editor, I might be your man. Check out my page on copyediting.
A professional copyeditor for fiction
I love stories, and I love storytelling. I’ve always been writing, and for the past twenty years, I’ve been studying the art and craft of writing fiction. What makes a book suspenseful? How do you write dialogue that’s both technically correct and has this tension that keeps you up at night? I had to understand these things.
I read every single book I could find on the subject, and for the past eight years, I’ve been studying at the Institute for Writers to deepen my knowledge and experience.
And I’d love to use all I’ve learned to help you create Your Best Story.
If you’d like me to work with you on your fiction, check out my page on copyediting.
A professional copyeditor for nonfiction
Of course, I’m interested in all kinds of nonfiction as well. I love science, history, philosophy, psychology, linguistics, writing technique—everything that’s interesting and inspiring.
If you’d like me to work with you on your nonfiction, check out my page on copyediting.
My inspiration for Your Best Story
I love quality.
I’ve always desired to see things come to their full potential, and I’m happy when I can do something to make that happen. For a long time, I’ve been working as a copyeditor in a large company, where I felt I was limited in what I was allowed to do to improve the text—time and money were the enemy.
Slowly, the dream began to emerge to start on my own. To start a company in which I could take the time to help authors make the very best of their manuscripts. I dream of working with authors who value quality above their wallet, and who are willing to invest time and money into their work. I don’t aspire to be cheap, but to be the best.
Because it’s Your Best Story.
My mission statement for Your Best Story
To make your story stand out among your competition.
If your story is a diamond, we’ll cut it to perfection.
My vision for Your Best Story
My mission with Your Best Story is to have the authors I edit reach their goals for publication.
My core values
- Being honest
- Working hard to achieve the best
- Daring to be who I am
- Providing the highest quality
- Not being cheap, but being good
- Getting the details right
- Everybody deserves a chance to success
- Dare to dream big
- Let your imagination drive you
- Love each word of your story
- There’s a (rough) jewel in every person
- Always keep on learning