Melissa Shales

What Others Have to Say

Lisa Gerard-Sharp, Travel-writer, Feature writer, Correspondent, Editor

“Melissa is one of the most experienced travel guidebook editors in the business and has edited my work on several occasions, including for Insight Guides. She is supremely competent, well-informed and sensitive to the needs of both publisher and writer so I have no hesitation in recommending her.”

Thea Grobbelaar, Publishing Manager at New Holland Publishing (South Africa) (Pty) Ltd (retired)

“I have worked with Melissa for about a decade, and it’s been a pleasure! She always delivers good work, and always comes through when it’s an emergency. I would recommend her unreservedly.”

Molly Burke Kirova, Writing professor, travel writer

“Best project editor I ever had the joy to work with. Choosy and exacting in the kindest way, but always on the side of the writer as long as that person produces to her standards. Also a superb historian and a lovely, lovely person. She has helped me immensely in my own career and I thank her.”


  • Honorary Life Member, British Guild of Travel Writers (2012)
  • BGTW Online Travel Writer of the Year (2010)
  • Voted #28 on the UK Press Gazette list of 50 most influential UK travel journalists (2010)
  • Winston Churchill Fellow (2009)
  • BGTW Guidebook of the Year (1999 and 2003)
  • Napoli Gold Prize – Best Guidebook (2002)

 Brian Bell, Former Editorial Director, Insight Guides

“Insight Guides delegates a great deal of responsibility to its project editors.., they come close to providing us with a print-ready book. It is a job that requires a broad range of skills. Melissa has always fulfilled the role admirably, producing books of quality within deadline and budget….”

 David Prest, Vice-Chairman of the British Guild of Travel Writers 2004-2006

“Melissa … has done the most astonishing job for our organisation: enthusing the wilting, seeing sense in the ridiculous and always being there to pick up the pieces and mould them into something wonderful…She’s not only managed to juggle all the balls in the air, but she’s kept the plates spinning, mucked out the elephants and made sure that the chipmunks get fed too…”

Jackie Binks, Head of CESC Summer School, Clacton 2012

“I’m so pleased [the summer school] was a positive experience for you – you really put your heart and soul into it, and to very good effect. I’d be delighted to give you as glowing a reference as references can be!”

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