Alexis Rizzuto

Alexis Rizzuto - Editor

Cambridge, MA, USA

I am a freelance editor specializing in narrative nonfiction. I offer developmental and line editing for essays, books, and proposals.

Request a quote
Verified identity

Overview

I’ve spent nearly 20 years in the writing and publishing world, in positions that add up to a useful combination of perspectives: from writing instructor, to working at a literary agency, as an editor at two publishing houses, and now freelancing. I know what goes into creating books, pitching books, editing books, and promoting books. My expertise is as a developmental and line editor of nonfiction. I am known for my sound editorial judgment, the passion and integrity I bring to my work, and a warm interpersonal style. My goal for each project is to bring the author’s ideas to their fullest and most effective expression, and help those ideas reach their audience.
Here are some comments from authors I've worked with:

"This is the second book I have worked on with Beacon Press senior editor Alexis Rizzuto. ‘Work’ is a misnomer—collaborating with Alexis has been a pure joy, and she has helped to fulfill my vision for this story, even at a point when I began to lose my way. I greatly appreciate her intelligence and honesty but most importantly her warmth in what has been an emotional, often challenging, process."--Jorja Leap, author of Jumped In and Project Fatherhood.

"During the many years I dreamed of being an author, I prayed I would be blessed with an editor who would make my work far better than it otherwise could be. Alexis is that dream editor, and I am grateful for the opportunity of working with her. Alexis ‘got’ the book from the outset and saw potential in it beyond my original concept."--Judy Mills, author of Blood of the Tiger

Languages
English (US)
Non-Fiction
Agriculture
Biographies & Memoirs
Earth & Space & Environmental Sciences
Education & Reference
Life Sciences
Nature

Certifications

  • MFA in Creative Nonfiction

Work experience

Freelance Editor

Self-employed
March, 2015 – Present (about 5 years)

• Manuscript critique and full developmental and line editing for authors of narrative nonfiction and memoir.
• Book proposal development and editing, guidance on market research, submission advice and support.

Senior Editor

Beacon Press
June, 2008 – March, 2015 (over 6 years)

• Spearheaded Beacon’s environmental list, acquiring and editing books on energy, climate, food, nature, animals, and conservation, as well as literary nature writing. Other topics include memoir and education.
• Worked collaboratively with other departments in the production, promotion, and marketing of each book, guiding the authors throughout these stages, and generating material for launch meetings and sales presentations.
• Cultivated new projects, authors, and contacts with agents; attended conferences relevant to acquisition areas.
"Alexis is everything you could ask for in an editor--conscientious, a meticulous line-editor, SMART, warm, reliable, and passionate about her projects, authors, and activism. She was a delight to work with as an office mate and equally appreciated as a model editor whose projects were always in impeccable shape when handed over to production. A rare combination of writer and editor, Alexis would be an asset to any editorial project."--Marcy Barnes, Production Director

Writing Instructor

Grub Street Inc.
January, 2003 – January, 2009 (about 6 years)

• Taught Creative Nonfiction, and Personal Essay & Memoir workshops (Levels I, II, and Master Class).
• Taught publishing workshops and book proposal seminars.
• Recurring panelist and manuscript consultant at the Grub Street Muse & the Marketplace conference.

Editorial Manager

Kneerim & Williams Literary Agency
January, 2002 – June, 2004 (over 2 years)

• Worked closely with authors to develop and edit book proposals.
• Assisted agents with submission lists and pitch letters, follow-up calls with editors.
• Managed flow of incoming manuscripts and queries; recruited, hired, trained, and supervised interns.

Portfolio (12 selected works)

Into Great Silence: A Memoir of Discovery and Loss among Vanishing Orcas

Eva Saulitis

Science entwines with matters of the human heart as a whale researcher chronicles the lives of an endangered family of orcas Ever since Eva Saulitis began her whale research in Alaska in the 1980s, she has been drawn deeply into the lives of a single extended family of endangered orcas struggling to survive in Prince William Sound. Over the course of a decades-long career spent observing and s... read more

Science entwines with matters of the human heart as a whale researcher chronicles the lives of an endangered family of orcas Ever since Eva Saulitis began her whale research in Alaska in the 1980s, she has been drawn deeply into the lives of a single extended family of endangered orcas struggling to survive in Prince William Sound. Over the course of a decades-long career spent observing and s... read more

Before They're Gone: A Family's Year-Long Quest to Explore America's Most Endangered National Parks

Michael Lanza

A longtime backpacker, climber, and skier, Michael Lanza knows our national parks like the back of his hand. As a father, he hopes to share these special places with his two young children. But he has seen firsthand the changes wrought by the warming climate and understands what lies ahead: Alaska’s tidewater glaciers are rapidly retreating, and the abundant sea life in their shadow departs wi... read more

A longtime backpacker, climber, and skier, Michael Lanza knows our national parks like the back of his hand. As a father, he hopes to share these special places with his two young children. But he has seen firsthand the changes wrought by the warming climate and understands what lies ahead: Alaska’s tidewater glaciers are rapidly retreating, and the abundant sea life in their shadow departs wi... read more

Project Fatherhood: A Story of Courage and Healing in One of America's Toughest Communities

Jorja Leap

A group of former gang members come together to help one another answer the question “How can I be a good father when I’ve never had one?” In 2010, former gang leader turned community activist Big Mike Cummings asked UCLA gang expert Jorja Leap to co-lead a group of men struggling to be better fathers in Watts, South Los Angeles, a neighborhood long burdened with a legacy of racialized poverty... read more

A group of former gang members come together to help one another answer the question “How can I be a good father when I’ve never had one?” In 2010, former gang leader turned community activist Big Mike Cummings asked UCLA gang expert Jorja Leap to co-lead a group of men struggling to be better fathers in Watts, South Los Angeles, a neighborhood long burdened with a legacy of racialized poverty... read more

When Grit Isn't Enough: A High School Principal Examines How Poverty and Inequality Thwart the College-for-All Promise

Linda F. Nathan

Examines major myths informing American education and explores how educators can better serve students, increase college retention rates, and develop alternatives to college that don’t disadvantage students on the basis of race or incomeEach year, as the founding headmaster of the Boston Arts Academy (BAA), an urban high school that boasts a 94 percent college acceptance rate, Linda Nathan mad... read more

Examines major myths informing American education and explores how educators can better serve students, increase college retention rates, and develop alternatives to college that don’t disadvantage students on the basis of race or incomeEach year, as the founding headmaster of the Boston Arts Academy (BAA), an urban high school that boasts a 94 percent college acceptance rate, Linda Nathan mad... read more

Dirt Work: An Education in the Woods

Christine Byl

A lively and lyrical account of one woman’s unlikely apprenticeship on a national-park trail crew and what she discovers about nature, gender, and the value of hard work Christine Byl first encountered the national parks the way most of us do: on vacation. But after she graduated from college, broke and ready for a new challenge, she joined a Glacier National Park trail crew as a seasonal “tra... read more

A lively and lyrical account of one woman’s unlikely apprenticeship on a national-park trail crew and what she discovers about nature, gender, and the value of hard work Christine Byl first encountered the national parks the way most of us do: on vacation. But after she graduated from college, broke and ready for a new challenge, she joined a Glacier National Park trail crew as a seasonal “tra... read more

Love and Fury: A Memoir

Richard Hoffman

An acclaimed author reflects on his upbringing in a post–World War II blue-collar family and comes to terms with the racism, sexism, and other toxic values he inherited.Finalist for the 2014 New England Book Award in Non-Fiction Richard Hoffman sometimes felt as though he had two fathers: the real one who raised him and an imaginary version, one he talked to on the phone, and one he talked to ... read more

An acclaimed author reflects on his upbringing in a post–World War II blue-collar family and comes to terms with the racism, sexism, and other toxic values he inherited.Finalist for the 2014 New England Book Award in Non-Fiction Richard Hoffman sometimes felt as though he had two fathers: the real one who raised him and an imaginary version, one he talked to on the phone, and one he talked to ... read more

The Point of Vanishing: A Memoir of Two Years in Solitude

Howard Axelrod

Named one of the best books of the year by Slate, Chicago Tribune, Entropy Magazine, and named one of the top 10 memoirs by Library JournalInto the Wild meets Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man—a lyrical memoir of a life changed in an instant and of the perilous beauty of searching for identity in solitude On a clear May afternoon at the end of his junior year at Harvard, Howard Axelrod pla... read more

Named one of the best books of the year by Slate, Chicago Tribune, Entropy Magazine, and named one of the top 10 memoirs by Library JournalInto the Wild meets Portrait of the Artist as a Young Man—a lyrical memoir of a life changed in an instant and of the perilous beauty of searching for identity in solitude On a clear May afternoon at the end of his junior year at Harvard, Howard Axelrod pla... read more

Among Chimpanzees: Field Notes from the Race to Save Our Endangered Relatives

Nancy J. Merrick

Foreword by Jane GoodallA former student and colleague of Jane Goodall shares stories of chimps and their heroes, and takes readers on a journey to save man’s closest relative. Unbeknownst to much of the public, chimps are in trouble: censuses show them to be extinct in four African countries and nearly so in ten others. A large percentage of the remaining populations live in unprotected, incr... read more

Foreword by Jane GoodallA former student and colleague of Jane Goodall shares stories of chimps and their heroes, and takes readers on a journey to save man’s closest relative. Unbeknownst to much of the public, chimps are in trouble: censuses show them to be extinct in four African countries and nearly so in ten others. A large percentage of the remaining populations live in unprotected, incr... read more

Harvest the Wind: America's Journey to Jobs, Energy Independence, and Climate Stability

Philip Warburg

Winds sweeping across the Great Plains once robbed the Farm Belt of its future, stripping away overworked topsoil and creating the dreaded Dust Bowl of the 1930s. Today, those winds are bringing new hope to the declining rural communities of the central United States. Nowhere is wind's promise more palpable than in Cloud County, Kansas, home to the Meridian Way Wind Farm, whose turbines are bo... read more

Winds sweeping across the Great Plains once robbed the Farm Belt of its future, stripping away overworked topsoil and creating the dreaded Dust Bowl of the 1930s. Today, those winds are bringing new hope to the declining rural communities of the central United States. Nowhere is wind's promise more palpable than in Cloud County, Kansas, home to the Meridian Way Wind Farm, whose turbines are bo... read more

On the Same Track: How Schools Can Join the Twenty-First-Century Struggle against Resegregation (Race, Education, and Democracy)

Carol Corbett Burris

A public school principal’s account of the courageous leaders who have dismantled the tracking systems in their schools in order to desegregate classrooms What would happen if a school eliminated the “tracks” that rank students based on their perceived intellectual abilities? Would low-achieving students fall behind and become frustrated? Would their higher-achieving peers suffer from a “water... read more

A public school principal’s account of the courageous leaders who have dismantled the tracking systems in their schools in order to desegregate classrooms What would happen if a school eliminated the “tracks” that rank students based on their perceived intellectual abilities? Would low-achieving students fall behind and become frustrated? Would their higher-achieving peers suffer from a “water... read more

Blood of the Tiger: A Story of Conspiracy, Greed, and the Battle to Save a Magnificent Species

J. A. Mills

Blood of the Tiger takes readers on a wild ride to save one of the world’s rarest animals from a band of Chinese billionaires. Many people think wild tigers are on the road to recovery, but they are in greater danger than ever—from a menace few experts saw coming. There may be only three thousand wild tigers left in the entire world. More shocking is the fact that twice that many—some six thou... read more

Blood of the Tiger takes readers on a wild ride to save one of the world’s rarest animals from a band of Chinese billionaires. Many people think wild tigers are on the road to recovery, but they are in greater danger than ever—from a menace few experts saw coming. There may be only three thousand wild tigers left in the entire world. More shocking is the fact that twice that many—some six thou... read more

The Predator Paradox: Ending the War with Wolves, Bears, Cougars, and Coyotes

John Shivik

An expert in wildlife management tells the stories of those who are finding new ways for humans and mammalian predators to coexist. Stories of backyard bears and cat-eating coyotes are becoming increasingly common—even for people living in non-rural areas. Farmers anxious to protect their sheep from wolves aren’t the only ones concerned: suburbanites and city dwellers are also having more unwa... read more

An expert in wildlife management tells the stories of those who are finding new ways for humans and mammalian predators to coexist. Stories of backyard bears and cat-eating coyotes are becoming increasingly common—even for people living in non-rural areas. Farmers anxious to protect their sheep from wolves aren’t the only ones concerned: suburbanites and city dwellers are also having more unwa... read more

Explore the Reedsy Community

Reedsy is a community of top publishing professionals. Join Reedsy today to browse 1000+ profiles.

Marta Pentecost

Marta loves to take a concept and help craft it into a spellbinding book that excites and informs its readers.

Denver, CO, USA

Deborah Webb

Editor/proofreader: experience in post-doc level books to EYFS and primary KS1 via academic articles, theses and commercial reports

England, United Kingdom

To view 1,000+ more profiles, Join Reedsy