When did you know you wanted to be an editor?
An internship in college was my first introduction to the job of Editor. I didn’t even know such a job existed and it was my father’s suggestion that I give it a try. I think working with words is in my DNA, though. My mother had to bribe me to put down books and interact with the world when I was a child. My mother and sister are both librarians and my parents met in a library.
What do you love most about the writing process?
For me it’s a puzzle and I get great satisfaction out of solving the puzzle. Filling in holes. Fitting together characters to make full picture. Solving the mystery of why people (characters) do what they do.
What do you love most about teaching writing?
Helping. Helping writers solve the problems gives me joy. Watching a writer’s face as he or she puts together those puzzle pieces and has a true creative moment is energizing.
What are you reading right now?
I’ve just finished Alan Bennett’s The Uncommon Reader which I highly recommend. On the surface it’s about the Queen of England taking up reading as a hobby but really it’s an absolutely hilarious, slightly subversive treatise on why reading and books are so important.
What’s your favorite writing quote?
Because I’m from Virginia, I default to Thomas Jefferson on this one: “I cannot live without books.” I might adjust it: I cannot live without writing.