I've been editing for the last decade and helped hundreds of writers to achieve their dream of publishing a book.
When you work with me you can expect:
A Quick Edit -- I don't make you wait a long time. Children's books and short stories I edit within 5 days, and for most novels it will take 2 - 3 weeks.
A Thoughtful Response -- I offer a blend of praise for what you're doing well as well as specific advice on how to improve parts of your work.
A Long-Term Benefit -- By the time we're finished, you will have a better sense of your writing strengths and weaknesses, and this editing process will empower you for the next 5 books (not just this one).
Here's a little bit more about me:
I'm also an author (“I Will Shout Your Name,” Press 53), have written for the Chicago Tribune and Los Angeles Times, and my work has been mentioned in The Guardian, Los Angeles Times, Publisher’s Weekly, and The Huffington Post. My MFA is from the University of Southern California and my MA is from New York University, and after teaching at the collegiate level for a decade, I decided to edit full time. After traveling to more than forty countries and living in three, I settled down in Orange County, California with my wife, twin boys, and five chickens.
“John provided a thoughtful analysis that pointed out many things that I’d missed. He also was kind and gentle in delivering constructive criticism, and effusive with praise where he felt it due. I am so glad that I trusted my book to him because I know that the finished product will be measurably better for it.”
– Samantha Hobden Stringert
“His editing services exceeded expectations. He helped me identify places to devote more attention and provided thoughtful ideas to begin implementing his feedback. I’ll be working with him again in the future. Can’t wait.”
– Chris Jones
“John was extremely helpful and very honest. All of his thoughtful comments made total sense. Will definitely use him again.”
– Karen Sherwood
“John provides just the right combination of encouragement and solid feedback that can greatly improve a piece of fiction. What I particularly like about John’s approach is his ability to understand where a writer is developmentally and speak to him or her on that level.”
– Maisie Wheeler
“John has an editor’s mind, a writer’s eye, and a teacher’s mentality. He challenged me to identify a deeper vision for my work, then cultivate my story to achieve that vision in the most compelling way possible. I’ve never revised more thoroughly, and I’ve never been more pleased with the results.”
– Mason David Boyles
I help fiction writers improve their books so they can get the agent they want, the publisher they want, and the reader they want. It's all about giving pleasure to the reader, and I help you shape your book so more readers will love the story you're telling.
I focus on the big picture elements -- character, plot, dialogue, themes, descriptions, etc -- and tell you what you're doing well and where your story could be improved.
Contact me if you have any questions and I'd be happy to answer.
Everyone knows everyone and everything in a small town. Wrong. Forbidden love, crime, even madness and murder lay hidden from view, unspoken. Sisters Crossing reveals the mystery of a serial killer, a suicide in a dark river, suppressed love for a potential murderer, the plight of a homeless genius. Small town characters tell their own stories in lyrical prose, excerpts from journals, poetry a... read more
A resourceful amnesiac, abiding in a brutal desert prison in Ancient Persia, tries to help his fellow inmates and struggles to stay alive. But when an opportunity for freedom manifests, matters grow worse than ever, and he must confront his deepest fears, or lose himself forever.
Dad, Angels and Dogs is an inspirational story that has purpose. Through this story a promise is kept -- we all make this promise to our parents at some point but only a few fulfill it with the help of Angels. When it comes time to keep that promise the reality of the situation can be daunting. Reading Maggie s experiences is almost like reading a template for success. Maggie brings real life ... read more
A collection of contemporary short stories with some touches of magic realism...Crane produces spot-on descriptions like that of an old man’s body that was “as thin and shapeless as a can of Pringles” and clever turns of phrase such as “[h]e’d learned to live with it, the way people learn to live leprosy or a criminal record”...Tales like “The Little Flower of the Newsroom”, with its clever ti... read more
Perspectives takes the reader through a tragedy, revealed from differing points of view, and delivers them to a triumphal epiphany of hope and restoration. When people ask, "Why would a loving God allow such evil to exist or why didn't God stop this evil?" Perspectives gives answers to these and other questions. Intended for ages 13 and up.Perspectives takes the reader on a wild ride, across t... read more
Warmth. Patience. Love. It’s a crisp, wintry morning and the Papa Possums take the kids to school. But wait! It seems that the little possums forgot a few things they need for school. Oh no! What can they do now? It’s an impossumible situation. But the papas have a secret that just might save the day. Are you ready to go to school with this fun group of possums? Let’s go! For all the little po... read more
whizz! Buzz! Sniffle! Sneeze! A bee with allergies... Who ever heard of such a thing! Lenny can’t stop sneezing and his buddies have the sweetest remedy to help Lenny feel good as new. Will it work? A rhyming verse picture book for all the little bumblebees near your campsite, ages 4-6.
Dilby R. Dixon was no ordinary 10-year-old boy. He was an outcast, the odd kid in school. Growing up as an only child, he had gotten accustomed to a life of solitude. In fact, he had no friends at all, which made him question whether or not he fit in with others in school or in this world.To occupy his time, Dilby turned to his wild imagination as he would dream of the most unbelievable places... read more
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I've been a freelance editor for 25 years, working with clients on novels and memoirs later published by Dutton, W.W. Norton, Scribner, etc.
I specialize in literary fiction and have worked with Lydia Davis, Joyce Carol Oates, Lara Vapnyar, Aimee Bender, César Aira, etc.