Helen Rogan edited my work for many years and everything I wrote was better because of it. She is the rare editor who understands your intentions and can help you improve every aspect of what you have written without trampling on your voice. And on top of that, she is a wonderful person. Anyone would be lucky to work with her. Your work will thank you.
—Merrill Markoe, author of several books, including What the Dogs Have Taught Me and Cool, Calm, Contentious; head writer of “The Letterman Show”
I’ve had a few lucky strokes in my publishing career but the luckiest was getting my start with Helen Rogan, She was the fiction editor at Harper’s, I’d sent a story to the magazine, a summer intern read it and passed it on to Helen. Even though I’d never had an editor, I was surprised at how much time she spent with me. Oh, so this was what it was like to have an editor, I thought. She had the uncanny gift of showing me how to make the story better but allowing me to think it was my idea. In fact, Helen spoiled me for life. She is my ideal as an editor; every time I hand in a piece of writing I think of her. Like all the best teachers, she is part of my brain and being. I am immeasurably grateful to her.
—Jane Hamilton, author of novels including A Map of the World, The Book of Ruth (both of them Oprah's Book Club selections), and The Excellent Lombards
Helen Rogan has all the tools of a good editor, including empathy and generosity combined with the ruthlessness necessary when she can see what doesn’t yet work in a piece of writing. Some of my writing has been on the receiving end of her sensible criticism, and a published essay, in one case, and a book, in another, were much the better for it. I would entrust a work of any length to her in the knowledge that when she has looked it over and suggested changes, it’s going to be better than it was when I showed it to her. But it will still be me.
—James Raimes, author of Gardening at Ginger
Helen Rogan is an editor’s dream and a writer’s answered prayer. She can take the most muddled writing and give it structure and depth without losing the writer’s voice. She is also a pleasure to work with, fast, professional and funny as hell.
—Betsy Carter, author of four novels, including The Puzzle King, and a memoir, Nothing to Fall Back On
Helen is one of the most brilliant editors I’ve ever met. Over the years I’ve had the privilege of working with her on projects both digital and print, at Hallmark Magazine, the U.S. Fund for UNICEF, and Natural Resources Defense Council (NRDC). At Hallmark, she demonstrated her ability to take raw prose to polish (she was the only person I’d trust to edit my Editor’s Letter). She helped writers both famous and new-to-the game to conceive and create their work—holding hands, talking through concepts, demonstrating where a turn of phrase or a different choice in verb, adjective, or punctuation might improve. At the U.S. Fund for UNICEF and NRDC, Helen has written or edited various publications—brochures, articles for publication, newsletters, a book outline—that contain a wealth of factual, often dense material, and made them lucid, accessible, and inviting, without sacrificing any of their complexity.
Bottom line? If I needed to hire an editor tomorrow, I would call Helen first. If I needed someone to look over some element of my own writing, I would call Helen first.
—Lisa Benenson, Chief Communications Officer at Natural Resources Defense Council; formerly, Senior Vice President, Marketing and Communications at the U.S. Fund for UNICEF and founding editor-in-chief of Hallmark Magazine
Helen edited my first piece of published work in a popular magazine. Her work was masterful, so masterful that the feature article inspired a book and book contract with a major publisher.
—Ellen Greene, author of Remember the Sweet Things
Helen is a great book doctor. She can diagnose what’s not working and provide the right medicine with a highly effective mix of telling-it-straight delivery and hope. To every novel, she brings a palpable love and respect for the writer’s voice, a notable expertise as a line editor, and a keen eye for the story. To every nonfiction project, she brings those same passions and chops as well as extremely strong journalistic and organizational skills. Helen is a writer’s editor in a way that makes her a publisher’s editor as well. She’s simply top of my list when I know of a book in need of assistance.
—Barbara Jones, Executive Editor, Henry Holt & Company
Helen Rogan is a genius! I love working with her. She is a perfect combination of intelligent, insightful, and funny—great with structure, has a wonderful eye and ear for dialogue, but more than that, you can trust her completely. She brings a wealth of experience to any project, she’s fluent in so many different forms—essays, magazine articles, books, blogs, writing for both mainstream and literary audiences. She’s smart and kind. Every time I’ve worked with her, she’s efficiently, beautifully cleared out all of the things that were getting in my way so that what I was left with was exactly what I wanted to write, but the fullest, best, most wonderful version of it. I highly, highly recommend her and her work. She is an incredibly valuable person to have on any writer’s team.
—Rebecca Barry, author of Recipes for a Beautiful Life and Later, at the Bar