I'm Mary Lanham, an editor and writer with a deep love of books that explore the fantastical, the liminal, and the psycho-spiritual.
My first story was an emotional epic about a magic flying trash can, written (and edited) on construction paper. Luckily, I’ve made some progress since then. I have an honors degree in English and Creative Writing from Williams College, and I was an editorial intern with Red Wheel/Weiser Books and with Milkweed Editions. I first dipped my toe into freelancing back in 2010, and I’ve also worked for two literary arts organizations.
I’m a member of ACES: The Society for Editing and the Editorial Freelancers Association (EFA). As a committed language nerd, I take a lot of professional skills classes, including:
the Poynter ACES Certificate in Editing
Copyediting Fiction (EFA course)
Copyediting: Intermediate and Advanced (EFA courses)
Inclusive Language (ACES course)
Unconscious Bias and the Conscientious Editor (ACES webinar)
Bricklaying: Editing for Structure (ACES webinar)
I live in the Twin Cities area of Minnesota, on the traditional territory of the Anishinaabe and Dakota peoples, where I share a home with my partner and our disconcertingly friendly cat. When I’m not doing word stuff, you can find me hiking at the local wildlife refuge, rock climbing at the gym, or playing terrible renditions of Queen songs on my ukulele.
And finally, the most important thing to know about any editor: serial comma, yes or no??
When it comes to my personal writing, you will pry the serial comma out of my cold, dead, and stiffened hands. But if you don’t use it, I can deal. After all, editing is about perfecting your work and your voice, not indulging my grammar obsessions (really!).