Erik Klass

Erik Klass - Editor

Los Angeles, CA, USA

My specialty is helping writers get their work ready for publishing in literary journals. Years of expeience. Dozens of success stories.

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I have published my own stories and essays in a variety of literary journals, including New England Review, Yemassee, Slippery Elm, Summerset Review, Maryland Literary Review, and Open: Journal of Arts & Letters, and I have been nominated for multiple Pushcart Prizes. I run a submission service for literary journals, and I have published several writing and grammar guides.

As an editor, I have worked with dozens of professional writers, including Erin Rose Belair (Glimmer Train, Narrative, Greensboro Review, Juked), Dvora Rabino (The Lascaux Review, Santa Fe Writers Project, Best of the Net nominee), Dominica Phetteplace (Zyzzyva, Copper Nickel, Ecotone, The Los Angeles Review, PANK, multiple Pushcart Prizes), and many more. Stories and essays I've edited have appeared in dozens of literary journals, including Southern Indian Review, October Hill Magazine, Green Hills Literary Lantern, Charge Magazine, Five on Fifth, 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 (I adhere primarily to the Chicago Manual of Style and Garner's Modern American Usage). There's too much competition, especially among the top publishers, to submit imperfect work. Journal readers, bombarded with towers of submissions, are looking for excuses to send work to the burn pile; failures in grammar and usage make for easy disqualification.

Second, your story or essay needs to 'work.' Plot is important, of course (usually), but I'm often more interested in craft and character. Once we've dotted our grammar i's and crossed our usage t's, we need to focus on bigger picture items, such as consistency of voice and tone, beauty of language, clarity of intent (even if our intent is to obfuscate), and plausibility of character.

Third, we sometimes need to focus on those topics that go beyond your actual writing: bios, cover letters, making sure your work is formally appropriate (font, pagination, line spacing), and so on.

Finally, if you're planning to submit your work to literary journals, we need to target the right ones. This is one of my greatest strengths. I've read and analyzed literally hundreds of literary journals, and I've created an algorithm that will ensure your work goes to the journals that best match your writing.

From the minutia of copy editing, to broader topics such as story, character, language, and voice, I will help take your writing to the next level. And when you're ready to start submitting your story or essay to literary journals, I can help. And, of course, I'm happy to help with longer works. I look forward to working with you!

"Erik brings kindness, wisdom and deep knowledge to the submission process.” —Dominica Phetteplace (Pushcart Prize, Zyzzyva, Copper Nickel, Ecotone, The Los Angeles Review, PANK)

"I gave Erik three pieces so far to edit and submit on my behalf. He 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, and I couldn’t be more thrilled with the process and results!" —Dvora Wolff Rabino (The Ignatian Literary Magazine, Linden Avenue Literary Journal, The Lascaux Review, Santa Fe Writers Project, and Steam Ticket)

"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 them a try.” —Jane Van Cantfort (Fiction on the Web, and others)

"Erik has a unique process, where he not only serves as an editor and, in some ways, mentor who encourages and helps improve your writing, but he also has an algorithm that gets to the heart of submission. I have no idea how long it would have taken me to have stories accepted if I didn't have Erik's clear guidance. I, without reservation, suggest you try Erik's service. He cares about writing and writers and he knows how and where to submit your stories." — P. A. Farrell ( McGraw-Hill and Demos Health)
English (US)
Contemporary Fiction
Historical Fiction
Literary Fiction
Short Story
Writing & Publishing


  • UCLA: Bachelor's of Engineering (minors in History and Music)
  • UCLA: Masters of Engineering (minor in Business)
  • Berklee College of Music: Degree in Music Performance

Work experience

Editor & Consultant

January, 2017 – Present (over 5 years)

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.

Editor & Writing Coach

January, 2005 – Present (over 17 years)

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.

Erik has 14 reviews

Communication & Punctuality
Communication & Punctuality

Judith Day
This is the second project Erik has worked on with me. I returned to him because he is professional and experienced, promptly responsive, challenging and very supportive. I greatly appreciate his work.

Judith Day, August 2022

Erik Klass
Thanks, Judith! It's always a great pleasure reading your work.

Reply from Erik Klass

Tony Covatta
Erik is a sophisticated reader with a good ear for dialogue and the right way to describe things. He has a sound sense of proper spacing of a story. Working with Erik has not only helped me improve individual stories but has also sharpened my overall sense of what will and will not work in my stories.

Tony Covatta, July 2022

Erik Klass
Thanks, Tony. It's always a pleasure to work with you.

Reply from Erik Klass

Tony Covatta
See other review for same sentiments, expressed there.

Tony Covatta, June 2022

Tom Parker
This has been my first experience in hiring an editor. Erik was prompt and professional in all of our communication; his critique and editing of my short story was high quality and considerate of my style. He was also eager to provide clarification or answer any further questions I had. I hope to employ his submission services to find a home for the piece he has helped to improve and would not...
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Tom Parker, June 2022

Erik Klass
Thank you, Tom, for the kind review. Reading and editing your work was truly a pleasure. I hope to work with you again soon.

Reply from Erik Klass

Lucas Strom
Loved working with Erik on my short story. He sees the fine-grained details and bigger picture elements and was able to help me greatly improve my work. He's also an excellent communicator. Would be happy to work with him again. Thanks, Erik!

Lucas Strom, June 2022

Erik Klass
Thanks, Lucas, for the review. I truly enjoyed reading your work. It was a pleasure working with you, and I hope to do so again soon.

Reply from Erik Klass

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