For over a decade I acquired and edited fiction and memoir for the Nan A. Talese imprint of Doubleday, a division of Penguin Random House that publishes an esteemed list of authors, including Margaret Atwood, Ian McEwan, and Pat Conroy.
Some of the books I edited went on to become finalists for the Los Angeles Times Book Prize, the National Jewish Book Award, the NAACP Image Award, the Thurber Prize for American Humor, the PEN Award for Biography, the Minnesota Book Award, and a Barnes & Noble Discover selection.
I hold a BFA in musical theater from Syracuse University, where I honed my knowledge of storytelling and dramatic theory. I’ve also participated in writing workshops at Columbia University and the Unterberg Poetry Center, and have participated as a panelist at the Writers’ Conference at Hunter College, the Jewish Book Council, and the Sarah Lawrence Writing Program. An essay I wrote on trade publishing appears in THE BUSINESS OF WRITING (Allworth Press, 2012).
“Ronit’s editorial critiques were so spot on and well expressed that I often believed I’d thought of them myself. She’s able to hone in on the heart of a story and help the author fully express that core, while trimming away that which does not serve it. She was incredibly responsive, whether helping me structure a novel in progress or in refining and line editing one that was more complete. I am lucky to have had her as my editor on two novels.”
—Allison Amend, author of ENCHANTED ISLANDS and A NEARLY PERFECT COPY
“Ronit was an exceptional editor. She seemed to have an intuitive sense of what I was trying to describe and helped me figure out the clearest way to express myself. She was kind, sensitive and generous and always framed her suggestions in an encouraging and empowering way. I learned so much from Ronit. Her editing made my book immeasurably better.”
—Leah Vincent, author of CUT ME LOOSE
“Ronit’s editorial comments give you at least three or four different kinds of useful reads at once: you get the sharp, savvy evaluations of a senior editor at one of New York’s most prestigious publishers, the visceral reactions of a reader who loves good writing, and the personal touch of your super-smart friend who’s deeply invested in your success. Her comments always go directly to the heart of the matter, without fuss. Without fail, her edits sent me back to my drafts with renewed energy, clarity, and confidence.”
—Avi Steinberg, author of THE LOST BOOK OF MORMON and RUNNING THE BOOKS
An NAACP Image Award FinalistAn ALA/YALSA Alex Award NomineeAnnMarie is growing up fast. After years of living in foster homes and homeless shelters, the twelve-year-old girl can take care of herself and her ailing mother. At thirteen, she's competing with other girls for the attention of older boys in the hip hop and rap scene of Far Rockaway. At fourteen, she is in love and pregnant, but dre... read more
An electrifying memoir about a young woman’s self-destructive spiral after being cast out by her ultra-Orthodox Jewish familyIn the vein of Prozac Nation and Girl, Interrupted, this brutally honest memoir tells the story of one woman’s struggle to define herself as an individual. Leah Vincent was born into the Yeshivish community, an ultra-Orthodox Jewish sect that shuns the modern world. When... read more
Plantation mistress Amanda Satterfield’s intense grief over losing her daughter crosses the line into madness when she takes a newborn slave child as her own and names her Granada. Troubled by his wife’s disturbing mental state and concerned about a mysterious plague that is sweeping through the plantation’s slave quarters, Master Satterfield purchases Polly Shine, a slave woman known as a hea... read more
Inspired by the midcentury memoirs of Frances Conway, Enchanted Islands is the dazzling story of an independent American woman whose path takes her far from her native Minnesota when she and her husband, an undercover intelligence officer, are sent to the Galápagos Islands at the brink of World War II. Born in Duluth, Minnesota, in 1882 to immigrant parents, Frances Frankowski covets the life ... read more
Avi Steinberg is stumped. After defecting from yeshiva to attend Harvard, he has nothing but a senior thesis on Bugs Bunny to show for himself. While his friends and classmates advance in the world, Steinberg remains stuck at a crossroads, his “romantic” existence as a freelance obituary writer no longer cutting it. Seeking direction (and dental insurance) Steinberg takes a job running the lib... read more
Encyclopedia of the Exquisite is a lifestyle guide for the Francophile and the Anglomaniac, the gourmet and the style maven, the armchair traveler and the art lover. It’s an homage to the esoteric world of glamour that doesn’t require much spending but makes us feel rich. Taking a cue from the exotic encyclopedias of the sixteenth century, which brimmed with mysterious artifacts, Jessica Kerwi... read more
A masterly and moving account of the most horrific hidden atrocity of World War II: Ravensbrück, the only Nazi concentration camp built for women On a sunny morning in May 1939 a phalanx of 867 women—housewives, doctors, opera singers, politicians, prostitutes—was marched through the woods fifty miles north of Berlin, driven on past a shining lake, then herded in through giant gates. Whipping ... read more
A lively and provocative double biography of first cousins Eleanor Roosevelt and Alice Roosevelt Longworth, two extraordinary women whose tangled lives provide a sweeping look at the twentieth century. When Theodore Roosevelt became president in 1901, his beautiful and flamboyant daughter was transformed into "Princess Alice," arguably the century's first global celebrity. Thirty-two years lat... read more
Is the Book of Mormon the Great American Novel? Decades before Melville and Twain composed their great works, a farmhand and child seer named Joseph Smith unearthed a long-buried book from a haunted hill in western New York State that told of an epic history of ancient America, a story about a family that fled biblical Jerusalem and took a boat to the New World. Using his prophetic gift, Josep... read more
The gripping story of the author’s aunt, a Jewish dance instructor who was betrayed to the Nazis by the two men she loved, yet managed to survive WWII by teaching dance lessons to the SS at Auschwitz. Her epic life becomes a window into the author’s own past and the key to discovering his Jewish roots. Raised in a devout Roman Catholic family in the Netherlands, Paul Glaser was shocked to lear... read more
The award-winning cartoonist, playwright, and author delivers a witty, illustrated rendition of his life, from his childhood as a wimpy kid in the Bronx to his legendary career in the arts. A gifted storyteller who has delighted readers and theater audiences for decades, Jules Feiffer now turns his talents to the tale of his own life. Plagued by learning problems, a controlling mother, and a d... read more
An engrossing and revolutionary biography of Isabella of Castile, the controversial Queen of Spain who sponsored Christopher Columbus's journey to the New World, established the Spanish Inquisition, and became one of the most influential female rulers in historyBorn at a time when Christianity was dying out and the Ottoman Empire was aggressively expanding, Isabella was inspired in her youth b... read more
Elm Howells has a loving family and a distinguished career at an elite Manhattan art auction house. But after a tragic loss throws her into an emotional crisis, she pursues a reckless course of action that jeopardizes her personal and professional success. Meanwhile, talented artist Gabriel Connois wearies of remaining at the margins of the capricious Parisian art scene. Desperate for recognit... read more
“You never, ever, have to worry about me being with another woman—that will never happen,” said Victor. “What you do have to worry about is me being with another man."That moment is the beginning of the end of a happily-ever-after marriage. After 12 years of marriage, Victor confesses to his wife that he is tormented by same‑sex yearnings. Despite his revelation, she is determined to do whatev... read more
Mourning for her daughter and her crumbling marriage, photographer Clare Porterfield returns to her childhood home in Galveston, Texas, hoping to find distraction in mounting an exhibition featuring the island’s vivid history. Things haven’t changed much during her decade away: her relationship with her mother and older sister is still fraught and competitive, and their neighbors, the Carraday... read more
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