Louise Catherine Breslau
A Group of Friends, 1905
I consult with writers working in memoir, fiction, the personal essay, lyric nonfiction, and more adventurous forms of cultural, literary, and art criticism. My strengths as a consultant include helping writers access their authentic voice, handle issues of time and narration more nimbly, create vivid scenes and imagery, and tackle larger structural and thematic concerns in both short and long form fiction and nonfiction. My input is most useful to writers with projects already underway (I don't do coaching—but see below for info about generative classes). My method is to read and reflect on the work, then respond with a 2-3 page letter on large scale issues such as plot or throughline, pacing, voice, use of imagery and dialogue, scene building, and overall structure. I also provide 3-5 marked-up manuscript pages pointing out sentence-level issues (syntax, word choice, etc), and follow up with a voice or video call in which we review my suggestions and discuss strategies for revision. My rate is $100/hour with a minimum of three hours. To inquire about a consultation, please email me with details of your project and thoughts about what you'd like to get out of our work together.
"Kim Adrian is an unusually perceptive critic with a keen sensibility and rare gift for writing. Her reading of my first chapter made me feel she’d caught every nuance I’d put into the material, and even every intention. Her observations and advice—written as a short lyrical masterpiece on pertinent aspects of the craft of fiction writing—helped me enormously and stayed with me as I revised other chapters and also as I produced some new material."
—Anne Mackin, author of Americans and Their Land: the House Built on Abundance (University of Michigan Press), working on a novel
"Kim Adrian is a powerhouse! With a remarkable eye for everything from structure to the smallest detail, she meets you where you are and helps you realize the full potential of your project. I can’t recommend her more highly."
—Ann Tashi Slater, publications in The New Yorker, The Paris Review, The New York Times, The Washington Post, and elsewhere
"Kim’s consultation is unfailingly on point. Her close reading and honesty help me take my writing forward. When it comes to assessing voice, Kim has a golden ear. Her love of language and deep understanding of craft inform her valuable feedback."
—Judith Helfand, working on a memoir
"Kim Adrian is the consummate professional. She somehow strikes just the right balance between being warm and truth-telling, a winning combination to move writing to the next level. When I met with her for consulting, she both provided specific feedback on my piece and talked about general craft points applicable to the work. This two-pronged approach makes her an extremely effective teacher, not something that many excellent writers can do. I would absolutely hire her again."
—Sheryl Boris-Schacter, working on a memoir
If you'd like to work with me in a small group setting, either to move ahead with something you've already got cooking or to generate new material, I sometimes teach workshops online. Please email me to stay in the loop on new workshop offerings. In the meantime, you might want to check out my free, craft-oriented newsletter for writers, Write On.
(submitted anonymously)
"Kim Adrian is an excellent teacher. She can describe with such insight and precision what’s working and not working in any given piece being workshopped."
"Zoom was an excellent vehicle for this class! People from all over the country were able to participate and we got to know each other and build the trust necessary for an honest exchange of ideas and feedback. Kim's degree of specificity with writing craft and memoir shaping ideas were excellent. She modeled feedback that was useful, clear, constructive, and actionable."
"It was an invaluable experience. Kim Adrian was great. She was engaging, full of information and ideas. She's a great listener and is especially personable."
"Great class! Immediately established a community. Lots of prompts and writing."
"The silver lining [of Zoom] is that it drew writers from many places. It was engaging, informative and super supportive. Kim Adrian is a gifted instructor with insight, deep knowledge about writing and a firm but gentle approach to bringing out each writers' best."
"Kim controlled the class, while allowing everyone to contribute, an excellent instructor!"
"I thought it was great. I loved the organization, the assignments and thought the teacher was very insightful."
"Kim was terrific. A natural listener with totally relevant and helpful responses to each participant. Balanced and professional."
"The class was excellent. Kim is a great instructor, sharing some of her own story to let us know that she identified with us. Kim offered the right blend of large and small group discussion, small group exercises, individual writing, and helpful feedback. "
"I enjoyed the instructor's approach to the class and her personal way of sharing her experiences with us. I thought the material she covered was helpful to me."
"The instructor, Kim, was fantastic."
"Class was wonderful! There were many students but because Kim is such a skilled teacher and writer, she immediately established comraderie and community. There was a variety of writing expertise and experience, from published writers to those submitting for the first time, yet Kim managed to knit us together into a cohesive group."