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What expertise do I bring to the table?
Coming from a background of nearly ten years teaching middle school ELL in a Title I school, I have a wealth of experience not only in teaching reading, writing, and language skills, but also in dealing with teens and tweens and the dramas (oh, the angst!) of their day-to-day lives. My favorite part of the job was recommending books to kids that they could relate to, and helping them learn to love reading and harness the power of writing.
I have a BA from University of Wisconsin--Milwaukee and an MEd from Pacific Lutheran University, with endorsements in Library Media and Humanities. On top of my experience teaching English and writing, I have also taken proofreading courses. I have been an avid reader since I developed the motor skills to hold a book. While I find writing enjoyable, I enjoy it even more to critique and help better writers than I to sound their best!
What can you expect working with me?
"Laura was delightful to work with. She balanced professionalism and warmth perfectly. She truly was a team player and committed herself to the work of our agency."
-Evelyn Cook, Educator & Curriculum Developer
I am most experienced in adhering to the Chicago Manual of Style, 17th ed., and Merriam-Webster’s Collegiate Dictionary, Eleventh Edition. However, if you have a house style guide you need to use, I am happy to learn it and go from there.
My personal preference is to use MS Word's Track Changes. I also have experience with Adobe and Google Docs, if one of those is more your speed.
Sharing a manuscript can be a daunting, intimate thing, and I want you to feel comfortable and supported. Consider me your cheerleader (minus the pom-poms and back flips-- sorry). I want to understand what you want and where you're coming from, so I typically ask a lot of questions. I am straight forward and you will find all of my feedback to be constructive, respectful, and helpful.
What's my turnaround time look like?
Ultimately, that depends on your project. I don't like to rush my way through novels for fear of not being able to give you my best. It also depends on what you want from me. How many editorial passes of what sort? However, if you are working to a hard deadline, we can definitely see if I can make it happen at no detriment to your work.
How does payment work?
For larger jobs such as novels and books, I ask for a 50% deposit before I begin, with the remaining 50% payable upon completion. For smaller jobs, payment is due upon completion.
If you need to work in installments (one chapter at a time, for example) then payment is due upon completion of each individual installment.
Payment can be made via PayPal or Venmo.
If your manuscript is longer than 20k words, I am happy to take a random sampling of your choosing (~1500 words) to edit for no charge. This is for you to be able to gauge if you feel like I would be the right fit for you to work with.
About Me - Laura Nichol
I grew up in Milwaukee, WI, but have now lived in and loved Tacoma, WA for over a decade with my husband and our tripawd "son". I am an avid swing and vintage jazz dancer and teacher. I tend to prefer animals to people-- especially elephants. I can't live without traveling, music, theater, gardening, snarky needlework, books, and cooking/baking. I'm a big language nerd and love mysteries.
Harry Potter series by J.K. Rowling
Miss Peregrine series by Ransom Riggs
Thursday Next series by Jasper Fforde
Veronica Speedwell series by Deanna Raybourn
Beatrice Hyde-Clare Mysteries by Lynn Messina
Anna Dressed in Blood by Kendare Blake
Hamlet by William Shakespeare
A Tale of Two Cities by Charles Dickens
To Kill a Mockingbird by Harper Lee (all-time favorite)
Norwegian Wood by The Beatles
Anything by The Beatles, really
The Hamilton soundtrack, at the mo'
Word of Difference welcomes diversity. We believe that
Differences = Diversity
that's a good thing.
How do you know if I'm right for you?
This is an important question. Here's a little more info on the topic of choosing an editor, if you're interested. Basically, your manuscript is your baby, in a sense, and you wouldn't just pass your baby off to anyone. I believe you should feel some kind of connection or a sense of good rapport with your editor in order to feel comfortable with them marking up your work. In other words, good vibes are helpful. If you poke around my site and think you like what you see, great! If not, that's okay. If you're just not sure, please feel free to contact me with any questions or concerns you might have, even if it's as simple as "Chocolate or vanilla?" (FYI, the answer is caramel. Or just "Yes, please!").
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