Jennifer Keckonen, Fiction Writer
Working with Elli has been profoundly helpful, and I accomplished more with her in a month, than I did in the past few years alone. Her exercises had me dig deeper into the who and why to get the most out of my plot. Her critiques were always positive in the manner she gave them, and my writing improved considerably with them. I am extremely grateful to have had the chance to work with her and look forward to working with her again in the future.
Charlie Shepstead, Fiction Writer
Elli provides thoughtful and formative feedback and great insight to a reader’s perspective when editing. She also thinks ahead, to what’s possible with a story, and what will keep a reader captivated to uncover more. Her personality and engagement really show in her edits!
Cara Finnegan, fiction (mystery) writer and non-fiction author
Elli's coaching is the perfect combination of compassionate and clear. She knows what makes a story move and how to craft character. Her feedback is substantive, her questions are always on point, and all along the way she challenges me to get to the heart of what I really want to say. On top of all of that, working with her is fun! Having her guidance has given new life to a story idea I've had in my mind for literally two decades.
Margaret McNellis, Historical Fiction Author
Elli brings both compassion and constructive criticism to my novel. She has—and continues to be—instrumental in helping me bridge older and newer chapters. Her facility with recalling minute details and thinking broadly at the same time has helped shape my book as I prepare to publish. An investment in working with Elli would be, for any writer—but especially those who need to world-build—just that: an investment. No money or time spent could be considered a waste with Elli’s steady hand at the helm. In addition to her ability to see the forest and the trees, Elli comes to her work with enthusiasm, integrity, and motivation—for herself but most importantly, for the writer.
E. A. Coe, Fiction Writer
Elli Comeau’s suggested edits for my book were outstanding. Her critique was also gentle and respectful. She is a professional who understands the diplomacy required to create improvement through measured and well-delivered assessment.
Karis Galloway, author of "Comfort The Wolves" --Winner of the 2020 Wattys
Feedback is a careful craft. Honesty is paramount. Criticism must be constructive. Personal opinion is a factor. And encouragement is needed in heavy doses, for the artist is a sensitive soul. Elli does all of this so well. From the sweeping commentary on bigger themes, to the small excitements of meeting new characters, to my pesky punctuation errors, she covered it all.
Personally, I found her feedback most helpful when it came to world building. As a fantasy writer, no matter how thoroughly you prepare your pallet, there will be colors you miss in the paint-by-number craft of fantasy worlds. So you need another set of eyes; honest eyes with honed precision to point out the blank corners of your canvas. Elli did so while respecting my vision and choices for the novel, giving me direction and hope for my edits and revisions.
Can’t thank you enough, Elli. Keep giving writers like me direction and hope as we tame the beautiful beasts that are our novels.
I asked Elli to take a look at the first draft of my first novel and give some feedback. As a new writer I felt both excited and proud as well as insecure and vulnerable. Elli’s feedback was kind, thoughtful and structured, our discussion was positive and she encouraged me to continue working on my writing, in a genuine and caring way. She looked at my work in a macro and micro way: the bigger picture of the story arc and the edits I needed to make to give the story and characters more depth and meaning, and minor things (minor at this point because the story needs to be re-worked in a big way) like point of view and tense. I felt like Elli really cared about me as the writer, not just the words on the paper. It was as if she built up the wellspring of creativity in me to continue writing and working my story when someone else might have crushed my sensitive dreams of one day becoming a published author. I felt I could trust Elli to work with me to edit my ‘baby’ and she gave me the confidence to continue writing it and one day set it free. Thank you Elli!
Susannah F., MA
Before starting my coaching journey with Elli, I was working on my novel project for many years. I had come to the point where I felt utterly stuck and lost. This was immensely frustrating to me as I attended a very prestigious MFA program - why couldn't I finish my novel? I was amazed after handing in just my first chapters to Elli that she honed into exactly where my stumbling blocks were and offered just the right advice. I realized that I had never been shown how to approach structure, pace and other elements that turn good writing into an actual book.
Elli's comments are thoughtful, detailed, positive-yet-constructive and geared toward helping a writer achieve the book he or she wants to write, while at the same time keeping the needs of the publishing market in mind. I wish I had found Elli earlier and am very excited to continue my work with her. I feel at long last that I will have a novel in my hands to send to agents in the foreseeable future!
Maggie R., PA
Elli gave me actionable feedback on my novel at the point where I was most overwhelmed. I'd worked on the project to the point where I was tempted to give it up for lost, but she had only encouragement for me, honestly pointing out the problems but also giving me direction (and hope!) on how I might fix them. She was prompt, professional, and thorough, and my writing and confidence have both improved due to her thoughtful advice.
Jennifer Baylor, Fantasy Author
I received a great developmental edit from Elli; it was much more detailed than any other I've received so far. Elli's comments were thorough and detailed. She covered issues from character development to world building to word usage and beyond. She honed in on things I knew I was struggling with as well as things I hadn't thought of or noticed, and offered solutions or ways to think on the issue further. She provided follow-up responses to my questions. Elli had an excellent grasp of my genre (urban fantasy) and what was needed to make the novel work. I enjoyed working with her, and would highly recommend her to anyone looking for an edit or a book coach.
Elli edited two chapters of an early draft of my current WIP. This is my third novel, and something I know I struggle with as a writer, especially in early drafts, is white room syndrome. Elli helped point out where my scene could be fleshed out to help illustrate the setting and emotions of the characters. This will help me look at my future chapters with the same eye for where to add information about the setting.