I offer editing, critiquing, teaching, and consultation services designed to help you discover the story you most want to write and get it on the page.
While I’m not sure I invented this analogy, I liken editing to adding salt to food while cooking: just like you don’t want to see the editor’s hand, you don’t want to taste the salt, but the right amount of editing can bring a writer’s voice to the fore. Whether you’re looking for a developmental edit to help you reimagine big picture aspects of a project or a copyedit to fine-tune sentence level and mechanical issues, I offer critiques that attempt to help get you closer to your ideal version of your creative project.
If you’re looking for something more hands on, a coaching arrangement offers you the chance to consistently check in with someone who offers accountability, as well as a critique of a manuscript in progress. Here, besides the nuts and bolts of writing, the focus is on getting from Point A to Point Zed, that is, putting words on the page. If you’re struggling through a draft, if you want the additional motivation of a deadline as well as the feedback from an informed, engaged critique of your works-in-progress, I can help with regular virtual meetings or phone calls.
I’ve taught creative writing at many levels to both children and adults, and some of my favorite classroom experiences have been in nonacademic, community based writing workshops. Writers have gone on to publish pieces they started or developed in my workshops in nationally recognized magazines and on major presses, and many writers have gone on from my workshops to earn places in well-regarded MFA programs. Whether you are part of a small or a large group, if you or your organization is interested in putting a group of writers together, I am an experienced workshop leader.
“Tom is the kind of reader and teacher every writer should feel lucky to work with—sharp, incisive, intuitive, curious, and warm. Wildly well-read, he brings a keen critical mind and an expansive imagination to his teaching. It was in his classroom that I first workshopped the initial chapters of what would become my debut novel. He read my work with meticulousness and generosity, providing feedback that left me eager to return to the page.”
— Antonia Angress, author of Sirens and Muses
“Tom is an outstanding instructor, coach, and editor. His ever-thoughtful feedback, editorial advice, and career guidance have been instrumental in my development as a writer over the years. Tom’s workshops are thoroughly engaging for writers at any stage in their career. He has an incredible breadth of literary knowledge, and his love for the written word is both genuine and contagious.”
“Tom does far more than edit, or even teach. He guides, mentors. After patiently sifting through my novel many times Tom continuously offered focused suggestions while pointing out strengths, all the while asking questions that allowed me to find my own answers. Think Morpheus saying, “Do you think that’s air you’re breathing?” Then Tom even shared versions of his own query letters—hugely impactful and confidence building. If you’d like to know more about my experience with Tom, please ask him for my email and reach out.”
— Anto Ljoljic
“Thomas Andes is a brilliant writer and teacher, kind, perceptive,humorous, industrious, compassionate, inspiring. All the great attributes of a master teacher. I recommend him to you. I’ve learned so much in his workshop.”
— Rosary O’Neill
“Tom was instrumental in bringing my manuscript to its final stage. His notes helped me hone in on character motivations, fight choreography, and overall big-picture changes that helped to drive the story forward much better than the manuscript I presented for his consideration. From the developmental edit to the line edit to helping with my query letter and synopsis, he maintained an enthusiasm for my story that kept me excited about moving forward through additional rewrites. I highly recommend him for anyone seeking editorial services.”
— Jon Hébert
“Tom is the kind of mentor who seeks first to understand what you’re tying to write, and then helps you get there. So many instructors impound their own rigid rules of writing, but not Tom. He’s an expert of the craft who can provide guidance across a range of genres and styles without missing a beat. Tom’s editing is always insightful and invigorating. His teaching makes writing feel fun and his encouragement is so genuinely tailored to your project that you forget all the writerly despair.”
— Laurel Shimasaki