Making your writing more seamless, one word at a time…
Hi! I’m Nicole Roccas, PhD, editor and writing coach at The Writer’s Loom.
My biggest creative outlet is communicating–whether honing my own writing or helping others do the same. Aside from my work as an editor, I am also a writer (check out my author site here). Because of this, I’m familiar with the pitfalls and difficulties inherent to the production and publication of excellent manuscripts.
Next on my list of favorite creative outlets is knitting, even though I’m not very good at it. I love knitting: I love the repetition, I love the combination of color and technique, and I love how it culminates in a finished product I can see and feel.
But what I don’t love is that it confronts me with my tendency toward perfectionism. I can’t tell you how many times I’ve brought a project close to completion only to rip it out or throw it into the furthest corners of my knitting drawer, never to see the light of day again. Everyone who knits knows that all projects must go through that loose-endy, adolescent phase. It’s the awkward homestretch after you’ve finished (or nearly finished) the actual knitting, but before you weave in the loose ends or block the stitches so they become more uniform. Every project must go through that valley, and the piece of knitting often looks messiest and ugliest just before completing these minor, endgame steps. It’s an aspect of the creative process I’m still learning to navigate with hope and confidence. Knitting teaches me to stay the course, despite my tendency to forsake the ultimate destination.
I can’t help but perceive connections between these two modes of creating–writing and knitting. Both begin with disparate strands, both require weaving in the loose ends, and both can culminate in something that brings greater warmth and vibrancy into the world.
As an editor and coach at The Writer’s Loom, I’m here to guide you through the toughest phase of creative effort. By working alongside you, the author, I help make your writing as seamless as it can be.
I got my start as an editor in graduate school. While completing my MA in German Studies and my PhD in European History, I learned to polish both my writing and that of my colleagues and students. It was also in graduate school I realized that I was more concerned about how people communicated their message than about their actual scholarship or research. I grew disheartened by the swell of academic books and articles whose arguments were difficult to discern through the haze of jargon, thereby failing to engage their readers. I wanted to make a positive dent in written discourses–whether those of academia or other nonfiction venues–by helping writers communicate in more compelling and articulate ways.
I brought the skills I learned in graduate school with me into the field of editing and coaching. For nearly five years, I’ve been working alongside accomplished and aspiring writers through the highs and the lows of the writing process.
Along with assisting private authors at all stages of the publishing process, I have worked under contract with academics and publishers. In addition, I serve as vice-chair for Editors Toronto, the local branch of Editors Canada. In the past, I’ve been an editorial assistant for Early Modern Cultural Studies, a book series published through the Centre for Reformation and Renaissance Studies (Victoria College, Toronto).
Looking for an editor or writing coach? Contact me for a free consultation.
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