As a writer, I have published stories and essays in a variety of literary journals, including New England Review, Slippery Elm, Summerset Review, Maryland Literary Review, Yemassee, Open: Journal of Arts & Letters, and many others, and I have been nominated for multiple Pushcart Prizes.
As an editor, I have worked with dozens of professional writers, including Erin Rose Belair (Glimmer Train, Narrative, Greensboro Review), Dvora Rabino (The Lascaux Review, Best of the Net nominee), and Dominica Phetteplace (Zyzzyva, Copper Nickel, Ecotone, The Los Angeles Review, multiple Pushcart Prizes). Stories and essays I've edited have appeared in scores of literary journals, including Southern Indian Review, Good River Review, Green Hills Literary Lantern, Fiction on the Web, and many, many more (see Gallery below).
Over years of publishing my own and others' stories and essays, I've learned a few tricks:
First, your work must be grammatically impeccable and follow standard usage rules. There's too much competition, especially among the top publishers, to submit imperfect work.
Second, your story or essay needs to "work." Plot is important, of course, but I'm often more concerned with writing craft, character development, consistency of voice and tone, beauty of language, clarity of intent, and so on.
Third, if you're looking to submit your work to literary journals (or agents), we sometimes need to focus on topics that go beyond your actual writing, including bios, cover letters, query letters, and manuscript formatting. We also need to target the right journals. I've read and analyzed literally hundreds of literary journals, and I've created an algorithm that will ensure your work goes to the ones that best match your writing.
From the minutia of copy editing, to broader topics such as character, language, and voice, I will help take your writing to the next level. If you decide you’d like to submit your story or essay (or novel excerpt) to literary journals, I can help. And, of course, I'm happy to edit longer projects. I look forward to working with you!
"Erik brings kindness, wisdom and deep knowledge to the editing and submission process.” —Dominica Phetteplace (Pushcart Prize, Zyzzyva, Copper Nickel, Ecotone, and others)
"Erik was prompt, responsive, cordial, and a pleasure to work with. His comments and suggestions improved my essays and stories immensely. His copy-edits were impeccable. And he placed all three of my pieces [in literary journals] within three months. He totally knows his stuff!" —Dvora Wolff Rabino (The Ignatian Literary Magazine, Linden Avenue Literary Journal, The Lascaux Review, and others)
"Getting published in a literary journal was a lifelong dream of mine. After years of rejections, Erik helped me get there! The algorithm is particularly helpful, but the sensitive and thoughtful copy editing and comments made my stories better. I’m deeply thankful and urge writers to give him a try.” —Jane Van Cantfort (Fiction on the Web, and others)
I've been working with writers for years as an editor and consultant. Everything from flash fiction to novels. My goal is help get their work ready to be published, especially in literary journals. I also help my clients target the journals that will likely accept their work. And the results are in: 66% of the stories I receive find a home in a literary journal.
I've been working with students on college essays and SAT/ACT writing prompts for years. All the rules of good grammar and proper usage apply.
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I am a freelance editor with over a decade of experience working with major publishers, top literary agencies, and independent authors.
Friendly, hands-on women's fiction editor with over 15 years experience editing and publishing, including many Sunday Times bestsellers.