I offer complete book editing services for fiction, nonfiction, and children’s/YA: general assessments and developmental editing for early-stage manuscripts; detailed, constructive critiques; and final line editing. I work with writers at all levels, from beginners to much-published veterans. For newer writers, my critiques serve as a mini-writing tutorial that is customized to your manuscript, but that you should also find helpful to your future projects. For all clients, I aim to take the fear out of the revision process by offering clear guidance on how to proceed, with a focus on preparing your book for the marketplace. I also help authors develop query letters and book proposals that consistently lead to agent requests.
I have enjoyed over 30 years of experience in many aspects of the publishing field, as a published author (Bantam, Berkley/Ace, Scholastic, Avon, other), book editor, series developer, picture editor (Time-Life, Troll Associates), website producer (Whole Foods, other), ghostwriter, bookseller, ad agency owner, workshop teacher/speaker, and “literary midwife.” In the 19 years I have been editing full time, I have worked with over 300 authors. As the author of 15 books and countless articles, I know how much I have benefited from the many editors I have worked with; and I hope my clients learn to be better writers by working with me. I particularly love editing mysteries and thrillers, historical novels, children's/YA projects; and literary fiction; and nonfiction that teaches me something. But I work with manuscripts of all types. For me, every new project opens up a new world—one I always feel excited and honored to visit.
Owner, full time editorial service, 2000-present
Freelance manuscript editor/ghostwriter/coach 1992-present
Producer/content director/head writer, CD-ROMs, HyperQuest, 1995-1996
Contributing editor, various periodicals, Boardroom Reports, 1982-1998
Producer/writer, women's interest television talk show, 1993
Producer/writer/owner, Carol Gaskin Consortium (advertising agency) Gold Addy, 2 Silvers, 1988-1990
Author, 15 books, fiction and nonfiction, mostly children's/YA, one adult novel; 1985-1990
Picture editor, two Time-Life series and other publications; various positions in publishing and bookselling since teens, from stocking parents' bookstore to fact-checking to writing to manuscript editing.
Over 50 million Americans have a mental illness, but as many as 20 million don't have their illness detected. And many others get substandard treatment. Family members play a crucial role in recognizing mental illness, and helping a loved one get the treatment they need. The early signs of mental illness are clear if you know what to look for, and getting rapid and effective treatment will hel... read more
“Once upon a time,” begins the narrator of this richly imagined novel. But what follows is no ordinary fantasy full of dragons, elves, and wicked stepmothers. Yes, the tale involves a boy named Jack. But he’s not the one who climbed a beanstalk or slew seven giants with one blow. This Jack is a storyteller, a seventeen-year-old farm boy who sets off to seek his fortune in the royal city of Sun... read more
Strokes are the third-leading cause of death in America, and for the lucky’ stroke victims who don’t die, about half will spend the rest of their lives trying to recover.” Roughly 700,000 American suffer a stroke each year and around 140,000 of them are fatal. Different Strokes is an in-depth look at what surviving, or not surviving, a stroke can mean. And Steven Boorstein should knowat age... read more
"Those who have only been in Valley Forge and Middlebrook during the last two winters, but have not tasted the cruelties of this one, know not what it is to suffer." Major General Johann de Kalb, an officer in the Continental Army during the American Revolution, was describing the winter of 1779-80 at Jockey Hollow, a wilderness near Morristown, New Jersey. The beaten up and worn down Continen... read more
Foreword by Nikki GiovanniShe survived the horrific Middle Passage as a child and was purchased as a slave in 1761. By the time she turned twenty Phillis Wheatley became the most famous person of African descent in the world. In a culture dominated by white supremacy, she forced those around her to acknowledge her humanity and confront the inequity of her status as a slave. Heav'nly Tidings Fr... read more
The battle for the White House following the election of November 7, 2000, was arguably one of the biggest controversies in U.S. history. And one woman stood at the center of the storm-Katherine Harris, Florida's secretary of state. As the Florida recount unfolded in a maze of bizarre events, Harris was faced with the challenge of a lifetime. What enabled her to maintain her integrity, stick b... read more
Winner of the 2014 James River Writers Best Indie Novel ContestWinner of the 2015 Feathered Quill Book Awards for Best Historical Fiction and Best Debut AuthorA young woman's gift could weave together the fabric of a nation... 1810, upstate New York. 21-year-old Ella Kenyon is happiest gliding through the thick woods around her small frontier town, knife in hand, her sharp eyes tracking game. ... read more
Hurricane Sandy was a fierce demonstration of the ecological vulnerability of New York, a city of islands. Yet the storm also revealed the resilience of a metropolis that has started during the past decade to reckon with its aqueous topography. In Fluid New York, May Joseph describes the many ways that New York, and New Yorkers, have begun to incorporate the city's archipelago ecology into pla... read more
Teaching Stories and Activities for Youth is a storybook, but not completely. It is anactivity book, but not entirely. Rather, it is a combo: a combination of stories andactivities; of the inspirational and practical, of fantasy and reality.Here is a book of stories and lesson plans for teachers, group leaders, camp and schoolcounselors, and all who are entrusted with the welfare and growth of... read more
For any young woman, it can be hard to follow the rules . . . especially when you’re falling in love.But for Rachel, Hindy, and Leah, it’s especially hard. Because as Orthodox Jews, they live by a whole different set of rules. No touching a guy - any guy! - before marriage. No dating - unless they are considering marriage - and then, only marrying a man who rates high on their parents’ checkli... read more
2018 Book Excellence Award Finalist in the Suspense categoryAlan Newberg, a staid title-company lawyer in the middle of a divorce, escapes to the French Riviera in an effort to reinvent himself. Instead, he catches a case of careful what you ask for when his soon-to-be-ex wife freezes his bank accounts. Without access to money, Newberg gets a job working for a crazy American ex-pat from Texas ... read more
"Much more than a superb conspiracy thriller, Backfill is an absolute must-read for any environmentally conscious reader." BestThrillers.comEnvironmental manager Mary Ann Hodges takes on a job to build a near-zero emission coal power plant and mine at a power generating and mining company in the Utah desert. She discovers a conspiracy to hide the truth about an illegal gold mining operation in... read more
Life in the small mountainous community of La Paz, Guatemala is shaken by a gruesome discovery. The remains of a visiting U.S. doctoral student are found on one of the community's holiest shrines. Furthermore, his heart has been ripped from his body, his skin has been stripped away, and his limbs are missing. Government officials are convinced that he was the victim of ritual murders by local ... read more
As Boston’s demographics shift, a subtle cultural revolution swirls ahead, opening doors of perception. Jazmin, a Latina teen, explores immortality on a basketball court in Jamaica Plain. Tanya, a young black woman from Dorchester, confronts a store-owner over racial profiling. Matt, an Irish thug from Charlestown, learns “what women want” at a Caribbean hair salon in Mattapan. Rosa, a beautif... read more
In 2008, financial planner James Nussbaumer was convicted of felony theft. At age fifty, he found himself incarcerated and facing a ten year prison term. On his first night in prison, he was stunned when the locker he is assigned contains a worn, dusty book no one will claim--a book for which he has been searching: A Course in Miracles. His in-depth study of its lessons, combined with frank de... read more
Demons in the CrawlspaceFrank Salvato is a middle aged, divorced, homicide cop who is forced to join the world of tortured souls when his little boy is murdered. Battles with his own inner demons spiral into a limitless willingness to bend the law to get the bad guy. His emotional torment intensifies when he begins to investigate the disappearance of two little girls a case that may involve sa... read more
In the world of casino gaming, larcenous souls tip the scales of fortune in their favor. Casinos don't stop players from cashing in if the win is honest. But if the rules in the game are bent, casinos counter the results. James "Jimmie Quick" Silver knows life on both sides of the fence. He was a dealer, a player, a winner, a loser and a fugitive run to earth. Now he's a high-tech-gadget totin... read more
In Broadway, Schrafft’s and Seeded Rye—Growing Up Slightly Jewish on the Upper West Side, Lyla Blake Ward, author of How to Succeed at Aging Without Really Dying, tells it like it was growing up on the Upper West Side of Manhattan in the 1930's and early 1940's. Through essays and poems, histories and vintage photos, Lyla Blake Ward makes this unique neighborhood-- 72nd street to 110th-- east ... read more
Who Killed the High Priestess Thermafi? Palace intrigue...sibling rivalries...mysticism...murder. Hidden From the Face of Humans is a sweeping epic that brings to vivid life the last native Egyptian dynasty of 400 BCE. Behind the banquets and the festivities, the world-changing battles and maneuvers, are the great powers of the day: the pharaohs of Egypt, Plato of Athens, Persian King Artaxerx... read more
Carol Kortsch weaves the complex story of the weekend retreat journey of Mei, Sam, Raquel, and a cast of characters from diverse backgrounds who join together with the purpose to reconnect who they are with the work they do in the world. The story is evocatively set in a former Benedictine monastery, and is narrated by the mysterious plural voice of the ancient wisdom of a garden sanctuary. Ch... read more
The Other La Bohème is literary fiction that depicts the lives and loves of four friends who pursue opera singers' careers in present-day New York City. Jennifer (soprano), Stephanie (mezzo-soprano), Henry (tenor), and John (baritone) met in music school in Manhattan, where they performed Puccini's famous opera La Bohème at their graduation concert. After graduation they banded together as a g... read more
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