"She transformed my book with lightning speed"
I’ve worked with a number of editors in my life, but I have never found one as talented as Donna. As we shaped my new conflict-resolution book “Inside Out,” she was able to reorganize, capture my meaning in a simpler, clearer ways, and give life to the material, making it accessible to a much broader audience than I could have done on my own.
Working with her was like a dream. She seemed to respond almost instantly to every draft I sent her, with great questions and rewrites that actually transformed the book with lightning speed to make it more alive, personal and clear. She gave the book a flow that I had no idea was possible.
Through her gentle and direct questioning, Donna was able to draw ideas out of me that I didn’t know I had. I would not have thought that someone who didn’t know me or my work could understand and see the potential of the book to reach far beyond the professionals I had had in mind. But once done, the approach seemed so obvious that I couldn’t believe I hadn’t seen it all along. She really understands the reader’s perspective.
Be prepared, if you hire Donna, to know that she will listen to you with amazing attentiveness and bring your thoughts to life in your voice. She has a profound understanding of how to make words, stories, and ideas jump off the page.”
—Gary J. Friedman, Co-founder, Center for Understanding in Conflict;. Author, Inside Out: How Conflict Professionals Can Use Self Reflection To Help Their Clients, American Bar Association/Harvard Program on Negotiation (PON). understandinginconflict.org
"She deeply understands the writer's journey"
Donna has a writer’s soul and an editor’s ear and eye. She is intuitive, meticulous and inspiring. As a collaborator and editor, she deeply understands the writer’s journey, the twists and turns encountered on the way, the many choices to sort through, and here—the rare thing—she knows how to help convey that expanse on the page: She’s uniquely talented at getting to the heart of the matter so that the journey feels deep and lived-in but expressed with economy and power.
—Lynell George. Journalist, contributor to KCET Artbound. www.lynellgeorge.com
"Donna made my writing career possible"
After my agent B.J. Robbins sold my memoir, “Maneater and Other True Stories of a Life in Infectious Diseases,” to Renaissance Books, my co-author quit the project and it looked like the book deal was going to fall through. In stepped Donna. What I wanted was an editor who would take the time to teach me as we went along and who would only co-write the parts that were beyond my skill. The resulting book was the synergistic fusion of my writer’s voice and Donna’s deft help as teacher, editor, and co-writer. A paperback edition of the book was published by St. Martin’s Press under the title, The Woman with a Worm in Her Head.
Donna taught me so well, that I was able to work entirely independently on my second book, Bitten: True Medical Stories of Bites and Stings, which was published by St. Martin’s Press. Both books have been successful and are still in print. I credit Donna with making possible my career as a writer and I will always remember with gratitude the six months that I had the benefit of her kind and competent support.
—Pamela Nagami, M.D. Author, The Woman with a Worm in Her Head, St. Martin’s Press.
"Her extraordinary talent sets benchmarks"
Working with Donna Frazier as my editor at the L.A. Times was one of the best experiences of my 25 years in journalism. Her extraordinary talent set benchmarks for what an editor should be.
Donna is not only brilliant at helping her writers to conceptualize difficult stories and bring them to fruition, but also a superb line editor and wordsmith. She sets high standards, and her unfailingly kind, patient and thoughtful manner makes those who work with her strive to do their very best.
She possesses a very rare combination of knowledge of what makes for great reporting and a keen sensitivity to the nuances and poetry of language. She inevitably made my work more thoughtful, authoritative and gracefully written than it would have been otherwise.
—Reed Johnson, managing editor, Zocalo Public Square.
“Her encouragement and insight were crucial”
My journey in writing my memoir, “The Souvenir”, about my father’s service in the Pacific War, was immeasurably aided by Donna Frazier’s astute editing. Early in the writing process, Donna read through my manuscript. She wrote detailed notes, suggesting connections I couldn’t yet see myself. Her encouragement and poetic insight were crucial to my being able to persevere in the long process of writing my book.
Her notes were like a map to which I could refer when I got lost. She has an uncanny ability to see into the core of one’s writing. She helped me zero in on what was relevant to my story and where in the text I could delve deeper to find meaning. I recommend her without reservation as an editor, writing coach and consultant.
—Louise Steinman, Author, The Souvenir: A Daughter Discovers Her Father’s War, Algonquin Books; North Atlantic, and The Crooked Mirror: A Memoir of Polish-Jewish Reconciliation. www.louisesteinman.com
"Our book remains a best seller in its genre"
Working with Donna Frazier was an educationally enlightening experience. Wanting to write a book, and actually being capable of writing one, are two very differing things. Though my imagination and background were willing and fertile, my skill set as a want-to-be writer left a great deal to be desired. Donna calmly guided me step-by-step through the process from outline to end product. Her heart and intellect kept me in balance and on track.
“Set Your Voice Free” created a bidding war between several of the top publishers in New York City, and we received a six-figure advance. Published in 1999, it remains a bestseller in its genre today and we are updating it for a new 2015 edition. It has been translated into Italian, Japanese and Korean, and there are offers from around the world still coming in. I consider the book and my collaboration with Donna to be a huge success. If you are on the fence about working with an editor, coach or co-writer, get off of it! Stop procrastinating and start writing with a real professional.
—Roger Love, Voice and influence expert. Author, Set Your Voice Free, Little Brown. www.rogerlove.com
"She has A generosity of spirit And An aptitude that are rare."
Simply put, Donna Frazier is a peak performer, the most skilled and compassionate editor I’ve worked with over a long writing career of several decades. I handed her a manuscript that had some promise but needed work and, thanks in large measure to her dedication and competence, I came away with a publishable book. She captured my meaning, preserved my voice, and elevated the book’s readability with a generosity of spirit and aptitude that is rare in the book business. Our conversations and her insightful questioning helped reveal the book’s greater depth while broadening its potential audience. It was a sincere pleasure to work with Donna. She is definitely a treasure.
—Charles Garfield, Ph.D., founder Shanti. Best-selling author, Peak Performance, Peak Performers, Life’s Last Gift, Central Recovery Press, 2017.
"Two publishers wanted my book within weeks."
I was referred to Donna by one of her former colleagues at the Los Angeles Times, who said Donna was a fine writer, a superb editor, a deep thinker, and a wondrous spirit. I was therefore positively predisposed toward her when we met to discuss my book. The only thing I didn’t know was whether we’d have chemistry together. Donna did not disappoint at that first meeting nor at any time in our months working together. She was interested in my subject matter, responsive to my voice, and in tune with my goals for this book. Once she figured me out, which did not take long at all (she is a keen intuitive empath), we set out to work together.
Donna’s modus operandi is subtle, yet clear. I took virtually every one of her suggestions seriously and to heart. She helped me focus my thinking and writing, encouraged me to stay conversational even when discussing serious and difficult ideas and life-issues, and as a consequence two publishers wanted to publish the book within weeks of my sending in the manuscript. If and when I write another book, Donna will be among the very first people I call. She’s wonderful!
—John Rosove, Senior Rabbi, Temple Israeli of Hollywood. Author, Why Judaism Matters: Letters of a Liberal Rabbi to his Children and the Millennial Generation, Jewish Lights Press, 2017.
"I deeply value her contribution to our books."
Donna and I have worked closely on four books, and I deeply value her contribution to each one. Our first book, Emotional Blackmail, has sold more than 200,000 copies, and each week, another 100 people buy it to learn what have proven to be timeless techniques for responding to manipulation. Our most recent book, Mothers Who Can’t Love, may repeat that kind of success.
As a professional with strong ideas and a love for difficult topics, I was looking for a collaborator who could actively help me bring my tools, themes, and stories to the page with drama, clarity, compassion. Donna did that with grace, ease, and artful language. She respected my voice, challenged what needed to be questioned, and helped me refine and expand my material to satisfy our editors and powerfully move our readers. I highly recommend Donna as a book collaborator, editor, writer (and person).
—Susan Forward, Ph.D., psychologist. Best-selling author, Toxic Parents, Emotional Blackmail, Mothers Who Can’t Love.