Whether you know you're looking for a simple line edit or want to tear the floors out of your draft, I have experience working with authors at all stages of the game. I've worked on for-print productions and ebooks as a production manager, checked final drafts as a proofreader and combed through manuscripts on a line-by-line basis working as a copy editor.
Maybe you know what you want to say, but you'd like help figuring out where to start. Or you have the inclination and even the words, just no time to put pen to paper. As a professional copywriter, I can help you with that, too. Drop me a line and let me know what you're looking for. If I can't help you, I'd be happy to direct you to one of my contemporaries who can.
And if you'd just like to ask a question about your project and aren't sure where to turn, I'd be happy to help in that instance, too. I don't charge for this service or consultation.
Production Copywriter & Production Copy Editor
May 2015– present
Oct 2013 – Present
• Select and revise submissions for publication in a monthly online fiction magazine
• Collaborate with editing staff to publish high-quality fiction, poetry and editorial pieces
• Proofread fiction submissions for sentence-level and organizational issues
Freelance copywriter & editor
2011 – Present
Aug 2010 – Mar 2014
• Plan the contents of publications according to the publication's style, editorial policy, and publishing requirements.
• Oversee publication production, including artwork, layout, computer typesetting, and printing.
• Ensure adherence to deadlines and budget requirements.
Please note: Former clients are welcome to message me directly for continued consultations, updates, etc.
May 2010 – May 2011
Duties with this publisher include:
• recruiting new interns
• editing manuscript copy
Acacia Publishing (The Hired Pen)
May 2010 – Dec 2010
Read copy or proof to detect and correct errors in spelling, punctuation, and syntax.
GirlfriendIt (Social Media)
Jan 2010 – Dec 2010
• light page modification (HTML)
• layout, and proofing
• soliciting creative material and contributors
• writing teasers and companion articles for weekly radio show
• designating stories to interns
• updating/maintaining GirlfriendIt's radio show's news and podcast feeds for social networking sites
Jan 2010 – May 2010
• Verify facts, dates, and statistics, using standard reference sources.
• Develop story or content ideas, considering reader or audience appeal.
• Read copy or proof to detect and correct errors in spelling, punctuation, and syntax.
• Wrote for print and Web mediums while working closely with DRAFT editors.
• Learned the general editorial process of a national consumer magazine.
Apr 2009 – Dec 2009
• Observed certain administrative and clerical procedures.
• Familiarity with systems such as word processing, managing files and records, etc.
• Microsoft Office Suite 2007
• Learned how to communicate professionally on behalf of a publication.
using tools such as Indesign, Quark, InCopy, DreamWeaver, Photoshop and Photoshop Elements
for print and online content
administrative and customer service roles as well as connecting with professionals in on and off-line mediums
Publishing (page layout and production)
for print and ebook
Chicago Manual of Style; Copyeditor's Handbook; AP Style Book
Content management systems (Wordpress, etc.)
blogs, posting content to web and mobile platforms, etc.
for print and online journalism
Microsoft Office 2013
Word, Publishing, Excel, Outlook, Powerpoint, etc.
University of Washington
Editing Certificate 2015 - 2015
Arizona State University
B.A. - English 2008 - 2010
Arizona State University
B.A - English: Technical Writing 2008 - 2010
Mesa Community College
A.A English 2006 - 2008
Here's what a few folks have to say about working with me...
Interior Designer, Author, Speaker, Rebecca West Interiors
I can't begin to say how delighted I am with Mariah's edits to my book. When I read through them it feels like my very own writing, but better! She stays true to my voice and my intent, but manages to clarify what I want to say with every wonderful suggestion. Not only that, she goes above and beyond, offering far more than your standard editor. It's like having your very own cheerleading squad - so important on this So Long and So Hard journey of writing and publishing a book! She is generous with her smiles, her knowledge, and her resources. Mariah is a like a sparkly treasure in your writing toolbox. Rebecca West
Writer, The Eden Chronicles
Working with Mariah has been a wonderful experience, her services are exceptional and very reasonably priced, and I can’t wait to work with her again in the future. She was always very positive and her edits made my book a hundred times better. She has an infectiously positive attitude that made me excited to revise my novel, and the ability to check on the edits she was making in real time was a wonderful feature. Her humor and knowledge of pop culture made her edits as entertaining to read as they were informative, and I can’t imagine having anyone else edit my work.
I'll have my people call your people.
I count myself lucky to know some really amazing creatives. If I'm not exactly what you're looking for, maybe you'd like to get in touch with one of my contemporaries? Check out a few of my favorite people below.
Northwest Independent Editors Guild offers a frequently updated list of editors that comes complete with a bio. A great sign that your editor is worth his or her salt? They've invested time and money into building their web presence. After all--as anyone who's trying to market or promote their book can tell you--websites, guilds and associations aren't free. Working with an editor who has been vetted by and maintains a relationship to a professional organization means your editor values their reputation and is investing in their own growth. That's a good thing.
Frequently Asked Questions
You've got questions, and I've got answers. Well, the internet has answers...and I have this handy list of links.
Q: What will editing cost me?
A: That answer is so variable that the answer almost anyone will give you is: "Well, that all depends..." Here's a handy resource from The Writer's Market that many editors use to get an idea about what rates to charge.
The Editorial Freelancer's Association, too, is a great resource for editors and authors alike regarding rates.
A: I don't, but the EFA offers a sample contract and invoice link on their website. Plus lots more cool stuff. Honestly, I don't know why you're still here. You could be learning valuable information by clicking on any of these links.
Q: I have a novel, and I'm pretty sure it's a best-seller. Who do I get in touch with? Or should I self-publish? What's the big difference?
A: Don't we all, friend; don't we all.
If I knew who to get in touch with, they would be listed on the page above. The internet and a current issue of The Writer's Market--combined with a winning book proposal--are your closest allies. An editor cannot tell you where to publish your book. An established editor might know who to get in touch with, but typically referrals to agents or publishers will be limited to...well...what I just said above.
In regards to self-publishing versus pursuing a relationship with an established publisher, I'll tell you right now what I tell almost every one of the authors I work with: you miss 100% of the shots you don't take. If you had the patience and the passion to write a novel, I think it's a disservice you perpetrate unto yourself not to attempt a connection with a literary agent or publisher. You have literally (a-ha--see what I did there?) nothing to lose.
Self-published authors can know great success; I've had the pleasure of working with a few! But it takes thick skin and patience and persistence to be a successful self-published author. A wonderful editor and teacher, Beth Jusino, has an equally wonderful collection of books out that I think are a fantastic resource for do-it-yourselfers. It has my stamp of approval, and I think you'd get a lot out of it. (I'm also a fan of Gary Vaynerchuk's book, Jab, Jab, Jab, Right Hook, on social media marketing, which you can read about on Amazon.)
If you have questions about self-publishing, shoot me an email and I can go over the basics with you. It is not impossible to see success as a self-published author, but I will always recommend casting a wide net.
Q: I keep hearing about query letters and proposals and all this technical-sounding stuff. How do I know if I'm writing a good whatever-that-is?
A: I'm so glad you asked! And just like our friends at Reading Rainbow would have told us, you just need to take a look--it's in a book! This book, in fact: Scott Larsen's How to Write a Book Proposal is the book proposal Bible. Crack it open right now and drink in all of its juicy secrets.
A few other resources can be found readily online, such as these links here:
Jane Friedman's advice on writing a book proposal.
Rachelle Gardner offers a really great blow-by-blow with resources here.
And well-known contributor to Writer's Digest Brian Klems writes a bit about it here, as well.