MY STORY

 
 Photograph by Lindsay Mukkadam

Photograph by Lindsay Mukkadam

Photo by Alex Toumazis

Short Version

  • Drawing on almost a decade of editorial and marketing experience at major New York City publishing houses, I offer editorial, writing, consulting, and coaching services to writers, agents, publishers, and businesses on a freelance basis. 

  • A recipient of the Ashmead Award honoring Outstanding Editorial Achievement, I am also a graduate of the Yale Publishing Course.

  • I edit fiction and nonfiction projects, in a variety of genres, at all stages of development and execution. I collaborate with businesses and not-for-profit organizations of all sizes.

  • I have worked with national, international, and New York Times bestselling novelists and nonfiction writers; finalists for and winners of prestigious awards and fellowships; senior academics; high-profile celebrities; and professional experts. 

  • I've been a featured speaker at Bindercon NYC and other events, and I teach a popular Catapult class.

  • I graduated magna cum laude from Bryn Mawr College with an A.B. in English and a Concentration in Creative Writing. I spent a semester in Cairo, Egypt, which I believe is one of the most incredible countries on earth.

  • I was born in the United Kingdom, and now I live in San Francisco with my husband and the other love of my life—our pug, Charlie (left). 

  • When I'm not working, I spend my time reading, watching TV (recent recommendations are Hannah Gadsby's phenomenal Nanette and the HBO adaptation of Gillian Flynn's Sharp Objects), cooking (current obsession: Jerusalem), exploring outdoors, and eating my way across San Francisco. 

 

“We die. That may be the meaning of life. But we do language. That may be the measure of our lives.”

—Toni Morrison

 

LONG VERSION

I began college intending to major in political science, and ended up graduating with an English degree. If you're truly interested, I'll tell you the whole story over a cocktail sometime, but my change of heart was at least partly kindled by an introductory creative writing class I took freshman year to counterbalance my more academic course load. One turned into several, and during those classes I realized that I love cultivating the power words possess, and reflecting on what shapes a reader's experience. I also discovered that the "workshop" process was far more enjoyable than the nights I spent sitting down at my computer to churn out chapters. Reading my peers' work, identifying its power and potential, and figuring out how they could fulfill it introduced me to a professional path I might not have otherwise considered. 

After getting my feet wet as an editorial intern in the trade department of W.W. Norton & Company, I went to Random House (before it became Penguin Random House) and was lucky enough to end up in the office of legendary editor Gerald Howard. Authors I worked with during my time at Doubleday Books included numerous New York Times bestsellers and award-winners such as novelists Hanya Yanagihara, Kate Christensen, Donald Ray Pollock, and Chuck Palahniuk, and nonfiction writers Jacob Tomsky, Richard Rhodes, Edward Ball, and James Wolcott. After nearly four years, I moved across town to Harper Books, an imprint of HarperCollins Publishers, to work with established authors like Cokie Roberts, Mitchell Zuckoff, Attica Locke, and Lauren Belfer, and discover new literary voices such as novelists R.J. Hernández and Sophie Jaff, cultural historians Shelley DeWees and Allison Yarrow, memoirists/essayists Andy Miller and Morgan Jerkins, and criminal defense attorney Jerome F. Buting (star of Making a Murderer). 

By early 2017, my ten-year anniversary in the industry was looming. I'd read, evaluated, and debated hundreds of submissions; edited dozens of proposals and manuscripts, and shepherded their transformation into successful finished books; written reams of copy and crafted many marketing plans; earned significant professional accolades; developed relationships with a wide network of literary agents whom I respected; met many writers whose work I deeply admired; and amassed a cornucopia of entertaining anecdotes. (For instance, one year they announced at the Random House holiday party—after the bar had been open for several hours—that we were all getting a $5,000 bonus because E.L. James's trilogy had sold more than 60 million copies. We all cheered, and then a woman up front yelled, "I'm going to Jamaica!".) However, something inside me was restless.

I love making ideas come alive, and putting words to work. I love engaging intellectually and creatively with writers, encouraging them to dig deep to discover the full scope of their talent and then reach high to ensure their project is the best version of itself it could possibly be. I love helping businesses and brands find their authentic voice and use it effectively to share their story and connect with customers. When my husband was offered his dream job in San Francisco, I found myself at a personal and professional crossroads: If we moved, I would be leaving behind great bagels and a flourishing publishing career, but in exchange I would be embracing a dynamic, burrito-filled future focused on doing what I truly enjoy. Now I offer editorial, writing, consulting, and individual coaching services to writers, agents, publishers, and businesses.