IMG_7542In addition to the traditionally-published novels I’ve written in collaboration with professional editors from St. Martins Press, Severn House, and Perseverance Press, I’ve also self-published several of my own books. For those projects I am my own editor.

Recently, I had the opportunity to compile and edit two dozen stories by aspiring writers and established authors, called Getting Through: Tales of Corona and Community. Starting with only an idea to write something about coping with the corona pandemic, within a few weeks we had a polished book on the market.

I found the experience of collaborating with other writers on their own work both challenging and fulfilling. My part as editor was to help develop ideas; comb out the kinks in the story; organize the story into a coherent whole; point out problems with grammar, syntax, punctuation, and voice, etc. In other words, help make it a finished work of art.

If there’s something you have written that you have a dream of publishing or even just polishing up, feel free to contact me. It’s important that you understand I am not a licensed editor nor a professional proofreader. For that reason, I do not charge a fee, which is typically $40-$50/hour. What I propose is that for every hour I spend on your manuscript, you buy one of my books and you send the link to that book, with your opinion, to your friends via email and/or social media. That’s all.

To get a sense of how other writers have felt about working with me, I invite you to read the following testimonials. These are all of them—I didn’t pick and choose!

Testimonials from Corona Authors

Robert Debbaut: “When musician, author, pedagogue, and all-around good guy Gerald Elias put out an invitation for individual contributions to this anthology about the COVID-19 lock down, I responded with great enthusiasm. I have been honored to share friendship with this kind gentlemen now for thirty years (as well as, quite frankly, not nearly enough concerts), and I believe any and all of you will benefit from his insights, ideas, and perspectives. If you are offered an opportunity to collaborate with Jerry on a future such project DO NOT hesitate to do so. Jerry will help you become a better writer, and just being around him rubs one the right way.”

Jesse Hercules: “Gerald was great to work with on this collaborative story collection. He provided good suggestions as an editor, and handled all the logistics of making a set of manuscripts into a real book.”

Cami Shaskin: “I had a great experience doing this! I probably wouldn’t have been a published author otherwise. The process was smooth and easy. Jerry got back to me about our collaborative edits promptly. And it was for a good cause! Thank you for the opportunity.”

Stephen Hughes: “It was nice that someone actually read a story and seemed interested. I never receive any sort of feedback and yours was excellent. My writing has always been incredibly isolated but I stopped writing around the time I met my wife last year. It was nice to reengage with that side especially after so many music audition rejections/failures.”

Robert Baldwin: “Working with Gerald Elias was a joy. His vision for this project mirrors his caring for the content in this excellent anthology.”

Tana Hunter: “As far as the experience, having not done this since I was in school, it was interesting to find out that I could come up with a story and write it in about 2 hours. That short time is reflected in the story I wrote, but thanks to Jerry’s editing skills and its length, I don’t think it will waste too much of anyone’s time! You rock!”

David Cowley: “I found the collaboration on the editing of the book fine. I felt that you respected my opinion, that you were constructive, and didn’t try to bulldoze me into making changes we made. Accordingly, I felt that the final edit was genuinely a collaborative effort.”

Dan Blum: “Over the years, I’ve enjoyed being in the role both of editor and of writer being edited. It is important to remember, in either role, that there is no one way of seeing thing, no one solution to a problem, and that in the end, writer and editor are on the same team: producing the best product for the reader. Jerry clearly understood this, and it made our collaboration a pleasure.”

John Harrison: “Jerry, it was an inspired idea to create something positive from this otherwise crushingly negative time in our country’s history. Indeed, in world history. Like the assassination of JFK and the attack on 9/11, the Coronavirus pandemic will be remembered by all of us. It is an unprecedented event and bravo to you for thinking to preserve these memories for future readers. Thank you for enabling us to participate in your idea!”

Priscilla Hallberg: “Jerry Elias gave me a sense of direction and time, the right tone, voice, and mood while working on my story for his anthology. His involvement was so intuitive and well-pitched that the edits were quite easy. As a fellow musician/writer, he inspired confidence. I couldn’t have found a better editor!”

Cheryl Marceau: “From an author perspective, the process worked extremely well — quick turnaround on the submission, clear communication from submission to publication. Could not have asked for better.”

Arlys Whitaker: “It was a pleasure to work with you, both the project introduction as well as our editing – very helpful and most professional. While this writing opportunity was timely, I would be delighted to again contribute a short story in a group effort with you.”

Kat Fast: “Jerry Elias gave us a gift of purpose, something we could do to make a contribution to help as we shelter while the Corona virus rages across the globe. Participation in the project was seamless and efficient with excellent communication throughout the acceptance of story through edits and questions to managing the details of production. The Tales of Corona was as rewarding as reading Jerry’s novels which I highly recommend.”

Laura Osborne: “Thank you for leading the author group for your book, Tales of Corona and Community. Your constant editing emails kept me working with interest and joy. I looked forward to hearing from you every day with your input notes. Your probing questions were thoughtful, necessary, and pertinent for my successful completion of my essay. It was an honor to work with a wonderful author (and musician!). I would not hesitate to work with you, or seek your professional opinion in the future.”