Choosing an editor for your work should not be an agonizing process,
but you do want to be sure that you can foster a great working relationship
with the editor you choose.
Below is some information about me, but if you want to know more about
my credentials than you can learn here we encourage you to contact me. In return, before working with you, I request that you
fill out the Pink Eraser Author Interview, which asks questions about
you, your writing, and your writing life. It is important to me to know
that I might enjoy working with you, too.
Please read below to learn who I am, what I edit, and how I work.
Who I Am
Molly E.K. McGrath
Molly has been a professional writer
and editor for over fifteen years. After working in-house as a development
editor for a Boston and New York publishing company,
she decided to take her ongoing projects with her and contract new work out while she finished an MFA degree in creative nonfiction writing. She has found that though she is grateful for her formal training, as an editor at the publishing house and as a writer in her writing school, she enjoys the lifestyle and freedom of the freelancer better than working in any office with an obligatory workload. She gets to choose her own projects, and she can see both sides of the publishing industry.
As a writer and an editor Molly knows that both occupations are at the same time interrelated and quite
independent of one another. In her own experience as a writer, she is often satisfied with her writing
but suspects that it still needs an editorial eye before she can sell it. She consults with other editors and friends who are agents, who share their wisdom with her. In turn, she transfers this advice and her own editing secrets to her clients.
Molly believes that there is a certain way to go about getting published, a particular protocol,
which, if you follow correctly yet creatively, puts you ahead of your
field of competition.
Today she works with publishing companies, literary agents, and authors.
Publishers call her when they have a project in mind and have found an
author, but they need her to help develop the author's story, or help
the author to write within the style of that publishing house. Agents
ask her to coach their clients on how the publishing process works, from
book proposal stage to the bound book, and then help their writing evolve
along the way.
What I Edit
Molly's specialty is creative nonfiction. Also known as narrative nonfiction or literary nonfiction, this type of writing uses the elements of fiction (plot, character, dialogue, setting, etc.) to tell a true story. Molly began her career by editing history books for the academic trade market, and she enjoys editing nonfiction with a historical slant as well as memoir. She also works on several subgenres of fiction, and will consider collections of stories and essays, too.
Please browse through a list of recent published works to see some of the titles Molly has edited from the earliest manuscript
stages to final edits once the book is in production.
How I Work
Pink Eraser offers several different types of editorial services: Book
Proposal Writing, Query Letter Writing, Development (Content) Editing,
and Copy (Line-by-Line) Editing and Proofreading. You may click on this link to services for fuller descriptions, or read below to learn how we work with clients on each of these different kinds of editing.
How I Work on Book Proposals
Working from a draft of your manuscript, a table of contents, or a description of your project, Pink Eraser will help you turn your material into a marketable sales tool. As we go,
we will tell you some trade secrets about what sells, what doesn't, and
why. We will help you develop a compelling narrative arc, and make sure
that the prose of the proposal itself is error-free and that it contains
your best writing. Working on a book proposal can often take months,
but you will find it is worth it when literary agents and publishers
offer you contracts.
How I Work on Query Letters
The query letter, like the book
proposal, is an important sales tool. If written well, it has the power
to get your work published. We will help you craft a query letter that
stays true to the style of the writing in your book or shorter piece.
Together we will devise a way to draw the reader immediately into the
story your letter introduces, and employ literary devices to sustain
the reader's attention throughout the remainder of the letter. In the
end, you will have written a query letter that makes your project irresistible,
and you will also have a better understanding of what happens next.
How I Work on Developing Your Writing
When I receive your manuscript
I will read through it carefully, taking notes as I go. Within two weeks
of receipt we will have a phone conversation or an e-mail exchange
(whichever form of contact you prefer) about how you should proceed
to revise, and how I can help you do so. Typically I might craft a list of issues that jump out at me, combine them with your own concerns, and then set out on resolving these issues so that your manuscript has what it takes to get published. Generally I will help you rewrite sections if you are comfortable with that, or else just offer a critique and leave it to you to revise. See a fuller description of development editing in the services section of the website.
How I Work on Copyediting Your Writing
I will read through your manuscript, section by section, paragraph by paragraph, sentence by sentence, and finally word by word. This big-to-small-focus approach allows me to see any obvious errors first, and then work to the nitty-gritty. I can write comments and corrections directly on your paper manuscript; however, I prefer to work with Microsoft Word for Windows Editor. You may choose whichever way you would prefer to receive our edits.