Gina Mazza - Word Provocateur | Creative Alchemist
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To write is human. To edit is divine.

 

 

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“Be careful with whom you choose to share your creative gems, especially if they are still unpolished and mined from a very deep place or very high source.”

— from Everything Matters, Nothing Matters

 

 

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“Gina writes and edits with real talent and great humanity.”

Bill Weil, Pittsburgh, author of
newearthrelationships.org

 
 

Editor

Practiced | in the art | of Wordplay

Words speak to me. I encounter them in draft form and they say, “Put us in our place, every last one of us.” I have no choice but to oblige. Some words beg to be flung out like light. “Shine on, you crazy diamonds,” I encourage, giving them a polish. Others wish to be stripped down bare. “Cut the schmaltz and write us simple,” they implore. So I do.

Such is the wordplay of an editor enamored with language. If you’re having anything less than loads of fun with your writing project, let’s talk.

  • Need trouble sorting through whatever you’ve written? I can un-mess your message.

  • Are you out of words? I will invent some for you.

  • Has your writing lost its luster? Allow me to newfangle your stale nuances.

  • Has your authentic voice gotten drowned out? I will give your true voice the microphone so it can sing pure and clear.

  • I’m here to help you say what you mean and mean what you say.

Manuscript Evaluation

An evaluation of your work is the first step. If you have a partial or finished manuscript or other piece of writing, I’d love to help you take it to the next level of development. Maybe now is the time to have a set of professional eyes review your work and give you a solid critique. Bear in mind that feedback from those who know little about the artistic process — even well-intentioned colleagues and loved ones — can be ambiguous, personal and can stymie your creative flow; whereas constructive comments from a seasoned editor can spur you to new heights and beyond.

Enter, the Muse, stage right. My evaluation can be stand-alone or included as part of the editing services listed below. Depending on your needs, we’ll put together a plan of action for moving your manuscript forward. Even if you feel that your writing is ship-shape, it can still benefit from a fresh perspective. As creators, we can get too close to our material and miss things that another trained eye would readily see.

Content | Developmental Editing

This form of high editing takes into consideration the entirety of the project. I look at things like:

  • Is it suitable to market or not quite ready for prime time?

  • Is the narrative cohesive or inchoate?

  • Does it need to be expanded or shortened in places?

  • Is the plot sequential and logical?

  • Does the dialogue sound natural or stilted?

  • Should it include cited research or relevant sources that substantiate or bolster your central point?

  • Could the work use substantive revisions or a good cleanup throughout?

  • Are there problem areas that require complete rewrites?

  • Should the material be reorganized to better present the topic or plot?

Developmental editing can also include crucial considerations such as the work’s overall theme, marketing viability and—last but not least—the title and subtitle.

Line Editing | Proofreading

This form of editing strengthens the work by applying the rules of good composition and efficient writing. It is generally performed as a final pass to hone a manuscript for submission or publication. When doing this type of editing, I gleefully slip into my OCD persona and focus on the twee minutia. I do tasks like:

  • Correct spelling, punctuation and grammatical errors

  • Eliminate redundancies and verbosity

  • Tighten structure

  • Catch inconsistencies in plot, point of view, timeline, etc.

  • Tweak and vary word choice

  • Fact-check

  • Fine-tune rhythm and sound of the prose

  • Generally give the language a spit and polish

Gina’s Clients Speak:

“When I contacted Gina to edit my book draft, I had no idea how incredibly helpful it was going to be to my entire writing education. Her advice was invaluable. I learned so much about the structure and tone of a good story, and that has led to tangible results. I’ve since had 10 essays published by the San Francisco Chronicle and now have six agents interested in my manuscript. Thanks to Gina, I’m on the path to becoming a successful writer.” — Scott Terry, San Francisco, California

“Gina’s editing of my novel was clear and concise, and I was impressed by her accessibility and dependability. Gina’s sparkling personality made everything seem like fun, not work.” — Lorine Cahill, Wisconsin

“Gina’s edits added just the right touch. She is the best I've worked with over the years, a master at taking one’s writing from ordinary to extraordinary.” — Sandra McDevitt, Ohio, founder, Emotional Intelligence Institute

“Gina is an absolutely wonderful editor. Her sharp eye and creative perspective transformed my story from good to great. She is professional, personable, productive and fun to work with. Holding my finished book in my hands makes me so glad that I hired Gina to perfect my material before presenting it to the world. I wholeheartedly recommend her excellent services.” — Cathy Jennings