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Ready to get started with Kary Wayson? Contact them using the button on the right to let them know what you're looking for help on and when you're ready to get started.

"[Kary] helped me build my chapbook, and then my first book, poem by poem, encouraging me to ask all the right questions of them, to study them line by line. With all sincerity, I’d say that working together with her… continued and furthered my education as a writer. I have no doubt that she’ll do the same for many other writers who seek her help, and I recommend her whole-heartedly.” —Erin Malone, author, Hover (Tebot Bach Press, 2015) and What Sound Does It Make (Concrete Wolf Press, 2008) See All

Kary Wayson $90/hr

Services Offered

  • One-on-One coaching sessions
  • Read Complete Manuscript
  • Read first 15 pages of manuscript and provide feedback

Available For

  • Essay
  • Guidance in applying for awards/residencies
  • Line-Editing/Copyediting
  • Poetry
  • Preparing applications for College/MFA/etc.

"[Kary] helped me build my chapbook, and then my first book, poem by poem, encouraging me to ask all the right questions of them, to study them line by line. With all sincerity, I’d say that working together with her… continued and furthered my education as a writer. I have no doubt that she’ll do the same for many other writers who seek her help, and I recommend her whole-heartedly.” —Erin Malone, author, Hover (Tebot Bach Press, 2015) and What Sound Does It Make (Concrete Wolf Press, 2008)

"I was in the midst of reworking a manuscript that had been a near-miss at several presses over the course of several years, and I was at a dead end in my revision process. That was when I enlisted Kary’s help as an editor. Kary read two different versions of the manuscript. She helped me to tear it apart. She threw some pieces out (that I wouldn’t otherwise have had the heart to cut), then she gave me assignments for new poems to replace them. Within six months, I had an entirely new draft of the book, and six months after that, it was accepted for publication. Kary is a brilliant editor for the same reasons she is a brilliant teacher. She has an uncanny ability to step inside a poet’s mind. Kary will let you in on the secret of your work—and then give you the tools you need to realize it. The question isn’t should you work with Kary. The question is: why aren’t you working with her already?" —Drew Dillhunt, associate editor, Hummingbird Press, and author, Leaf is All (Bear Star, 2015)

"Kary is a kind and talented editor. She’s knowledgeable, attentive, detail-oriented, and attuned to the unexplored possibilities in each text. She’s also fearless about telling you what your best work requires. Every time I’ve followed her advice on a piece, the result has been a text that felt more like—I don’t know another way to say this—itself. How delightful is that? Definitely hire her. You’d be hard-pressed to find someone who does better work." —Eli Briskin, author, Orange (Entre Rios Books, 2019)

"Kary Wayson has helped me shape and fine-tune a number of essays, stories, and two manuscripts over the last fifteen years. One of the manuscripts she reviewed was an academic book, and the other, a memoir. Kary’s adept at finding the heart of the narrative, the intent and the aspiration of the work. She offers clear, direct suggestions about what might need to be reshaped, reconsidered, rewritten and/or sometimes cut. She’s thorough and reflective, attentive to small details; Kary considers each word. I never doubt that a piece of writing she’s edited is on its way to becoming its best possible self. I can’t recommend Kary highly enough." —Trisha Ready, author, Music in Therapeutic Practice (Rowman & Littlefield, 2016)

Kary Wayson is the author of three books of poetry, the most recent of which is Via Maria Materi, forthcoming in 2019 from Burnside Review Press. Her poems have been published widely online and in print journals such as Crazyhorse, Poetry Northwest, The Nation, Narrative, FIELD, and others, including the Best American Poetry and the Pushcart Prize anthologies. A 2012 Stranger Genius Award nominee, Kary was Writer-in-Residence from 2013-2015 at Hugo House, where she’s taught poetry classes (on and off) for around 15 years.

Working Style

Read Complete Manuscript

I’ll read the manuscript three times. The first pass through will be a preliminary skimming of the entire text. In the second pass, I’ll give the text my careful attention; I’ll welcome it as-is, without an agenda, noting my questions and reactions along the way. The third time through, I’ll give it (again) my careful attention, but by this time the manuscript will have lived long enough inside my consideration for me to see clearly where it does or doesn’t work, and why. At this point I will be able to offer detailed suggestions for syntactical and structural revisions. I like to meet in person to go over my suggestions, which I will provide as specific notes in the manuscript itself, as well as in a separate document giving more general advice.

One-on-One Coaching Sessions

My favorite! I’m able to meet monthly for regular hour-long coaching sessions, which include written and verbal feedback on existing work, help with revisions, and ideas and exercises for generating new work.

Availability

My availability is flexible, depending on the needs of your project. I prefer to offer any extensive feedback in person, though I’m willing to do it via email—or even on the phone—if that makes more sense for the best use of time and travel.

Interests

Literary fiction, short fiction, essay, memoir, art criticism, literary criticism, literary theory, philosophy, poetry.