And  here is the same story as it was when we handed it in to the New Yorker.

Let me edit your work.


I have a relentless eye for word choice. I attack redundancies and clichés mercilessly. I perceive overall structure and reorganize to make it all work. I make my clients work hard, but we get the job done.


I  have been editing the copy of my husband and writing partner, Dan Baum, for fifteen years. Gun Guys, published by Knopf in 2013, is our fourth book. We start by working together on the proposals which get us our magazine and  book contracts.


In producing a book or article, Dan does the legwork and writes the first draft, then I chip away at it and shape it, and finally, it goes to the magazine or publishing-house editor. On Nine Lives, for example, I reduced the manuscript from 190,000 words to 117,000 without losing a single scene or character -- just by tightening sentences and trimming fat.

This is me blocking out Nine Lives in our house in New Orleans. You can read more about our collaborative process here.

Here’s an example of how Dan and I work. This is the first draft for Dan’s New Yorker story about the Asian tsunami. This is the way I got it.

Margaret Knox

Here’s how it finally ran in the magazine -- not much different than our final version.

If you’re thinking of writing a book, please call me early. I can be very helpful in conceiving a book-length narrative and a few conversations early on could set you on a good path and avoid a lot of heartache later.

If you’re at the stage of wanting to pitch your book to publishers, or your article to magazine editors, you might look at Dan has helped a lot of writers craft successful proposals.

I can be reached at or 303-817-5592.

“Meg is a miraculous shaper of words and ideas. She helped guide my manuscript with a firm but light hand, with respect for my voice and vision and, at the same time, great empathy for the reader. She is a guru of both the micro and macro of editing, providing a strong sense of both structure and flow, while at the same time distilling sentences and paragraphs so gracefully, with such economy of language--a word-swap here, a deletion there--that one can't imagine how the writing could have been otherwise. I, for one, won't be caught publishing without her keen eye and calm guidance! “

                                                -- Hannah Nordhaus, author of:

                                                “The Beekeeper’s Lament.

“Margaret provided critically needed edits to my book "Collaborative Resilience: Moving From Crisis to Opportunity", published by MIT Press in 2011. Not only did she enliven and streamline the text - with a ruthless eye for academic jargon - she was delightful to work with and delivered on a tight deadline.”

                                                -- Bruce Goldstein, 

                                                Associate Professor

                                                Environmental Design

                                                University of Colorado Boulder

"I didn't have the writing chops to pull it off.  Meg Knox took an axe to the unwieldy dialogue and reshaped it into narrative form. So thank you, Meg, for taking that painful, necessary first step."

                                                -- Neil Fabricant, author of:

                                                Mike! Wall Street’s Mayor

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