Michael Mohr: Book Editor & Writer
Michael Mohr: Book Editor & Writer

Michael Mohr: Book Editor & Writer

Offers remote services
Discounts available
Offers remote services
Discounts available
estimated cost

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Introduction: I am a Santa Barbara-based, Pushcart-Prize nominated writer, former literary agent's assistant and successful freelance book editor. I've worked with hundreds of writers and have helped them strengthen their books. A famous client is Christian Picciolini, whose memoir WHITE AMERICAN YOUTH was published by Hachette Books (2018). I edited his second memoir as well, BREAKING HATE (2020). Since then Christian has been on 60 Minutes, Sarah Silverman, Megyn Kelly, Sam Harris, NPR, and in 2019 had an MSNBC TV show airing called Breaking Hate. Clients also include Gini Grossenbacher (THE AMERICAN MADAM SERIES), Tom Pitts (HUSTLE), Rachel Rose (THE OCTOPUS HAS THREE HEARTS), and many more. My own work has been published in many places including: Writers' Digest; Creative Penn; Writer Unboxed; Concho River Review; Fiction Magazines; The New Guard; and more. MY fiction was nominated for the Pushcart Prize in 2018. In 2019 I was on the cover of Books & Buzz Magazine. Whether it's memoir or a novel, if you're serious about your craft and ready to get to the next level, I'm your editor. I do not handle science fiction, fantasy or mystery, nor children's books (YA is fine). Michael Mohr

Hired 1 time

Serves Santa Barbara, CA

Background checked

1 employee

10 years in business

Payment methods

This pro accepts payments via PayPal.

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Customers rated this pro highly for work quality, responsiveness, and value.

Exceptional 5.0

6 reviews


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pro avatar
Ashton T.
May 25, 2018

Hired on Thumbtack

Hired on Thumbtack

Honest on all issues and accomplishments with my work. I am very grateful for the amazing overview of the project and added insights.

Details: Developmental editing • Fiction novel • MLA • Phone or internet (no in-person meeting) • The editor travels to me

pro avatar
Barney M.
Nov 8, 2017
Michael is absolutely amazing! He is a master at his craft and keenly intuitive. His insight and provocative urging have forced me to dig deeper than I thought I could. He has an innate ability to elicit more from a writer with feedback that is truthful and unquestionable. I know my work has vastly improved which has been very satisfying. I give full credit to Michael for his concise guidance and inspiration. Every single comment he's offered, I read it and say to myself, "he's right." I feel so fortunate to have found him.
pro avatar
Christian P.
Nov 2, 2017
Michael was amazing. He helped me get my manuscript to a place where I was able to get an agent and a book deal with a major. He was a great copy editor and editor and I will work with him every new book I write. Great guy!!
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Richard L.
Nov 11, 2017
Michael is an outstanding book editor. I've been working with him on my manuscript for the past two years. He excels in the intangibles, with terrific suggestions about improving a story's pace, character development and plot. So often when Michael suggests something, a lightbulb goes off in my head and I think: Of course! Why didn't I think of that? Beyond his uncanny ability to see where my story should be going, he also detects what's missing. This is a trait any writer wants to have in an editor--an ability to identify what needs to be added or expanded upon. Beyond his professional editing skills, Michael is consistently prompt and turns drafts around well within his promised timeframe. Michael is not only a great editor but he can, if needed, be a coach as well. He knows what his writers are going through, because he's a writer himself. He has been important to me in his coaching role, because he's helped me plow through the rough spots that are inevitable in completing something as complicated as a novel. He becomes a partner in getting the job done, and his words of encouragement and hope make all the difference.
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Lori M.
Nov 6, 2017
Relieved, that's how I felt once I began working with Michael. I knew my story was solid, but needed help. From the beginning his feedback was invaluable. In written comments he helped me develop stronger three-dimensional characters, tighten the tone, pace, tension, and that all-important narrative voice. After his initial assessment I did the first of three rewrites. Each version was better. Michael was spot-on with suggestions of where I needed to restructure a scene or reflect a character's underlying motivation. He was so helpful with the big picture, offering specific examples and suggestions for how to improve. Honest but tactful, Michael was easy to work with, completely professional in reviewing the work and getting back to me in a reasonable period of time. I've worked with other editors and been less satisfied. Michael created a feeling of partnership on the project. I have no doubt my book is better because of our work, and I wouldn't hesitate to use him again
Background Check

Michael Mohr


  • What should the customer know about your pricing (e.g., discounts, fees)?

    For developmental editing I charge 4 cents per word. Sure, on a resource like Thumbtack (as a customer) you can pay less for an editor, since we're forced to compete. But if you're a serious writer, you should be thinking about quality over ease and an inexpensive edit. As they say: You get what you pay for. For query letter critique and general writing assistance I charge $50/hour. I am open to price negotiation for blog writing. Ghostwriting is different, usually a flat fee.

  • What is your typical process for working with a new customer?

    The customer comes to me with a fully formed book, in whatever stage. We negotiate a standard contract and agreement re time and money (4 cents/word) and then you pay me the first half up front and I dip into the manuscript. I will hand you back (usually within 1-3 weeks) the marked-up MS with tracked changes/side-bar comments as well as a detailed editorial letter (usually 5-7 single-spaced pages) giving my feedback on what worked, what didn't, and solutions to your story problems. I am always open a la email to answer questions, concerns, etc. (You will pay me the second half of the bill upon receipt of the completed MS.) As for general writing, query letter critique, blog writing, those are hourly (except ghost writing) and are to be discussed by author and editor. My hourly rate is $50/hr. Ghostwriting is a flat fee.

  • What education and/or training do you have that relates to your work?

    1. I have a Bachelor's degree in Writing from San Francisco State University 2. I have written about 30 or so published short stories and some nonfiction. One of my stories was nominated for the prestigious Pushcart Prize for Fiction; several have been semi-finalists in competitions; and one was recently a finalist in a big international contest and will be published in fall, 2020. 3. I interned with a literary agent for nine months in 2013 4. I have written 9 novels 5. I have edited dozens of authors' books, both at the agency (many of whom went on to be published) and on my own, including Christian Picciolini's memoir, WHITE AMERICAN YOUTH (Hachette Books, Dec 26 2017)

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