S270B. Reading as an Editor: The Intimate Hermeneutics of Work in Progress

Marquis Salon 7 & 8, Marriott Marquis, Meeting Level Two
Saturday, February 11, 2017
4:30 pm to 5:45 pm


Frank O’Connor wrote that William Maxwell guided his writers not by directive, but by saying "This I think is what you are trying to say.” Good editors occasion the latent genius of a work through conversation, inviting that blaze of understanding between reader and writer. These panelists have a broad range of experience acquiring, developing, and writing fiction and nonfiction. They discuss how a deep engagement with works in progress informs and enriches one's own reading and writing life.



Mara Naselli's essays have appeared in Agni, the Kenyon Review, the Hudson Review, Ninth Letter, and elsewhere. She has been an editor for twenty years, was a recipient of the 2014 Rona Jaffe Foundation Writers' Award, and writes a regular literature column for 3 Quarks Daily.

Catherine Adams is the founder of Inkslinger Editing LLC. She has worked tirelessly since 2003 to mentor authors in the creation of stunning narratives by charting out revision plans that enhance the books’ strengths and build lasting connections with their readers.

Peter Dimock has worked as an editor in book publishing for more than twenty-five years, first at Random House and then at Columbia University Press. Authors he has worked with include Toni Morrison, Angela Davis, John Kerr, and Amartya Sen. He has published two novels.

Beth Staples is associate editor at Lookout Books and Ecotone at the University of North Carolina Wilmington, where she also teaches classes in editing, book design, and publishing. She received her MFA from Arizona State University, and she is currently at work on a novel.

Hilary Plum is the author of the novel They Dragged Them Through the Streets and a work of nonfiction Watchfires. She has worked as an editor of international literature and with the Kenyon Review; she is coeditor of Rescue Press's Open Prose Series, and teaches and edits in Philadelphia.


February 7–10, 2024
Kansas City, Missouri

Kansas City Convention Center