Work With Me


“Melanie is the best kind of voice to have in your head…one of the best things for my career has been Melanie’s advice, guidance, and red pen.”

Editing, Coaching & Consultations

From an in-person meeting, phone call, or Skype chat to discuss how to begin your project, to an in-depth big-picture critique of your draft, to editing a polished manuscript, I offer options for whatever help/advice you need at any stage of the writing process. Coaching can include setting deadlines and accountability check-ins, or having meetings to discuss story arcs, structure, plot holes or the business side of being a writer. With my education, training, and experience as a published author and writing instructor, I can lend a guiding hand to help you accomplish your writing goals.

Write to me at melanie.thorne@ymail.com and tell me a little about yourself and your project. We’ll email and/or set up a call to figure out a plan that works best for you.


“Melanie is, hands down, one of the smartest and most insightful instructors I’ve ever had…an instructor who can help you make your book the best it can be.”

Workshops & Seminars

Go Away, I’m Writing

A 3-part motivational seminar series designed to help you shut out the world, conquer your inner demons, and overcome your excuses so you can get your ass writing. What are you waiting for?

Friday Night Writes (Online)

A seven-week generative online course for anyone looking to produce new material or jump-start a project that has stalled. If you need deadlines, accountability, and community, read more here.

Finish Your Fucking Book Boot Camp  

Get your book in shape this summer. In-Person & Virtual options.

(Currently on Hiatus for 2019)


“Melanie believed that I could write a book before I really believed it. Thanks to her, I’m this much closer to finishing my fucking book.”

Writing “Therapy”

Let me help you identify behaviors and thoughts that hinder progress, whether on the page or in your mind or emotions. Just like in psychological therapy sessions, sometimes it’s a block or issue we don’t even know is there that’s creating the most trouble.

Because I am also a writer, and a teacher of writing, I can not only offer advice on how to overcome psychological blocks, but also offer suggestions and ideas for craft-related questions and struggles.

I’ve been told I’m quite easy to talk to, and due to my history I’m insightful and observant and often ask the questions that get you to the things you need to realize.

We most likely won’t even need to delve into your relationship with your mother, though I will say–it’s often good material for writing. 🙂

Email me and we can set up a time to talk–about (almost) anything you want, and if you want, you can read more about my philosophy behind writing therapy here.


“When I had my first meeting with Melanie, within two minutes she had put me completely at ease and seemed to be reading my mind, answering questions before I even asked them…She is also just a remarkably smart, genuine and witty person. Being around her is always a good time and then almost without realizing it you’ve taken your work to the next level by the time you say goodbye.”

Query Letter Critiques

Query letters are your first impression to agents, so you want them to shine. And not to brag, but I did snag an agent with only two queries, so I feel like I am a good person to offer advice on this short but stress-inducing piece of writing. Let me help you unpack its parts and make it less scary and easier to approach.

Whether you are just starting to put together your query or are ready with a draft and need feedback, don’t tackle this important part of the publishing process on your own, or wait until an agent is waiting for you. Spending time on your query is critical to your publishing career. Sooner is better than later in getting started so you have time to revise.

I can read and edit your query letter, synopsis/outline, and first five-ten pages, or any combination of the three elements generally requested in submissions to agents. Prices start at $125.

I can also offer guidance on the submission process and tips for choosing the right agent for you.

Email me for a consultation and we’ll move you forward in the publishing journey! melanie.thorne@ymail.com


UCLA Extension Classes

Most quarters I teach a class in the novel writing series at UCLA Extension. Check the catalog for the most up to date course information.


Long-Term Workshops

I run carefully assembled ongoing small private workshops. If you are interested in joining one of my groups or having me facilitate your existing group, please email me at Melanie.Thorne@ymail.com.


Not Sick of Me Yet?

Stay tuned for additional workshops and seminars. If you would like to be kept up to date with news on upcoming classes and workshops, please join my mailing list at the footer of this page or email me with questions.


Testimonials

“Melanie is the perfect blend of critical and encouraging.”

“In addition to Melanie’s notes and comments being incredibly helpful, I really appreciated her workshop. I’ve found other classes and writing groups much less useful, and I think Melanie is very skilled at leading and guiding these discussions. This was the first time I’ve walked away from a workshop feeling like I had real concrete ideas about how to improve and move forward.”

“Melanie is one of the best teachers I’ve ever had. I can’t wait to take her next class!”

“I have an MFA in writing and have been doing writers’ groups and workshops for years. Melanie is, hands down, one of the smartest and most insightful instructors I’ve ever had…an instructor who can help you make your book the best it can be. Anyone would be lucky to have the chance to work with her.”

“Melanie has invigorated each story I have brought to her, but more than that she has molded my writing practice so that my work keeps getting better when she’s not around…She is also just a remarkably smart, genuine, and witty person. Being around her is always a good time and then almost without realizing it you’ve taken your work to the next level by the time you say goodbye.”

Read more testimonials and what others are saying about working with me.

Testimonials

Melanie is the best kind of voice to have in your head. I know I can trust her to give honest feedback while still energizing me to get to the next page. Melanie has invigorated each story I have brought to her, but more than that she has molded my writing practice so that my … Continue reading Testimonials

Writing “Therapy”

At some point during the last few years of doing editing calls and writing consultations, I started to recognize similar patterns in these conversations as in conversations I’ve had with my therapists. I’ve been in therapy for years (if you’ve read my book or essays, you have some idea of of why that’s been necessary) … Continue reading Writing “Therapy”

Workshops

WORKSHOPS This writing life is hard, but not impossible. Community helps. Writing doesn’t have to be 100% solitary! Connect with others and tackle writing issues in these in-person workshops in the Los Angeles area, or make bonds with people from all over the country in my online courses. Current and Upcoming Workshops Go Away, I’m … Continue reading Workshops

My Teaching Philosophy

My goal in teaching fiction is to give students an arsenal of writing tools and the time and community in which to practice those tools, so that they may each find their unique voice and the confidence and courage to tell the stories only they can tell. My approach includes facilitating the careful study of … Continue reading My Teaching Philosophy