Cushion Editing Services

Content editing, copy editing, writing, research


My name is Maureen Lee. The services I provide include content editing, copy editing, writing and research.

For over 20 years I worked full-time as an editor at the New Zealand Parliament, editing text on a wide range of subjects. My duties included copy editing, proofreading, fact-checking and checking formatting. I developed editing style, wrote style guides and training material, and trained people to be editors.

I can quickly get to grips with any subject so that I can edit copy on it.

I edit non-fiction, academic writing, memoirs, histories, reports, and training material.

I look forward to working with you.

  • English degree from the University of Auckland
  • Experienced editor of text for people whose first language is not English
  • Experienced editor of text that includes words and phrases in Te Reo Māori
  • 15% discount for members of the New Zealand Society of Authors (PEN NZ).


I recently had the pleasure, as well as the good fortune, of utilising Maureen Lee of Cushion Editing to edit my autobiography. I found her work to not only be very accurate and precise, with an emphasis on pertinent, relevant facts, but also provided an uncanny ability to think laterally. So to ensure any reader, a well informed, easily understood read. I am indebted to her.

Name withheld

I found Maureen’s editing of my manuscript very thorough. She even researched the Maori words, checking they were written in the correct way for the story. She would question why I wrote things, then present different viewpoints for me to consider. This allowed me to push my thinking even wider. She would make me think about what I had written, and by re-writing or changing a sentence or paragraph it would sound even better. Yes, I can say it was totally worth having my book edited by Maureen.

Raewyn Anderson

Maureen edited my manuscript ‘A Lighthouse Keeper’s Cookbook – Stories and recipes from New Zealand lighthouses.’ It has now been accepted by a publisher. I had written the book over twenty years which clouded my mindset. The editing process was thorough in the extreme. Maureen sorted it all. Numerous emails passed to and fro to confirm facts and style. I recommended her to a friend who has also had his book accepted by a publisher. I have no hesitation in saying this is the go-to lady for any writing editing.

Paul Trevethick

I have recently had a manuscript approved for publication as a direct result of using the editing services of Maureen Lee at Cushion Editing. I had rewritten the manuscript many times over many years and there was some interest in it, but it needed the finishing touch that I as a writer found overwhelming. Maureen’s coherent thinking, meticulous attention to detail, and her ability to sympathise with the story and my writing style, coached me through the final process. I needed a “third eye” and got it. My publishers told me that apart from a few comma changes the manuscript was good to go. Now we have a writing relationship, Maureen is also working with me on a sequel.

Name withheld

Maureen has provided high-quality comprehensive editing services for our organisation across a variety of products. Often the parameters of the work have changed and we have become very appreciative of Maureen’s flexible and agile approach to meeting our needs.

Name withheld

Maureen has the rare skill of being able to polish a piece of writing while preserving the author’s voice. With her excellent general knowledge she is able to edit writing across a broad range of subjects. Maureen is conscientious and precise, and is patient and thorough when training others.

Heather Zachernuk, former Hansard Reporter and Editor

Having worked alongside Maureen for 20 years in a demanding publishing environment, I can vouch for her excellent editing and proofreading knowledge and expertise. Her work on screen was always accurate and timely in what was a pressured environment. Maureen has been involved in computerised publishing systems and is a great self-manager.

Name withheld

Are you looking for an excellent editor? I can recommend Maureen Lee of Cushion Editing Services. Maureen has always given me excellent feedback, asking careful questions so she understood what it is I am trying to say and explaining why changes need to be made to my documents.

Wynne Price, former Clerk Assistant (Reporting Services), New Zealand Parliament

Why use an Editor?

You write because you have something you want to communicate. Poor writing can make it difficult for your readers to understand what you are saying. Spelling mistakes and typos are a distraction. Factual errors make you lose credibility.

By using my services you can be confident that your writing is

  • clear
  • concise
  • accurate
  • consistent in style and formatting.

And I will make sure your writing uses language appropriate for your readers.

The services of an editor provide you with a safety net – a cushion.

Sara Donaldson of Northern Editorial on why copy editing is important to good writing:
Copy Editors Matter

Here is a recent article written by someone who knows the value of a good editor:
The Better Angels of Our Writing

John E McIntyre of the Baltimore Sun writes about what proper editing is:
What they think about when they are editing

This op-ed piece from The New York Times explains the effect that using the passive voice can have:
How Texas Teaches History

Recent Clients

international consultant writing reports on a new law

Institute of Directors in New Zealand: proofreading online training course

doctorate student

therapist developing advertising material

author of a series of booklets to be published on a personal development website

academic applying for another position

holder of knowledge of the history of an iwi who wants his knowledge to be available to his fellow iwi members and their descendants

family of a young New Zealander who kept a diary of his trip to the Antarctic with Captain R F Scott on the ship Discovery in 1901-03

author of a 63,883-word story of ‘love, friendship, betrayal, adventure and the power of matakite’, set within a Māori context and drawing heavily on Māori beliefs

truck driver writing about his life on the road, and his journey to enlightenment

author of children’s book, a sequel to Awatea’s Treasure

a company’s KiwiBuild proposal, involving several technical documents in different formats, done to a tight timeframe

HUIA Publishers: content and copy edit of 78,000-word young adult manuscript incorporating Māori concepts,

Institute of Directors in New Zealand: review of training material (multiple documents over several formats)

MBA student’s property development project: editing and fact-checking

Institute of Directors in New Zealand: report writing (12 reports), including some Te Reo Māori words and phrases

builder putting together a Look Book and TradeMe advertisement

author of military history The Compleat Guide to HMS New Zealand

Institute of Directors in New Zealand: report writing (100-plus reports)

tertiary student writing report on sugar tax

author of 80,000-word love story

author of children’s book Awatea’s Treasure

tertiary student writing a report on waste reduction at building sites

author of an editorial for a medical publication

author of memoir / recipe book A Lighthouse Keeper’s Cookbook

Institute of Directors in New Zealand: editing multiple training documents