Lisa Cooper Ellison

Writer, Editor & Coach

What i do

Manuscript Evaluation

Looking for feedback before you move forward?

Developmental Editing

Need someone to help you tackle serious problems in your manuscript?


Starting a new project or feeling stuck and overwhelmed?

Classes and Seminars

Looking for a speaker or instructor for your next event?

Mindful Writing

Having problems with that dastardly internal editor?

Getting Started

I offer a free thirty-minute initial consultation via Skype for all potential clients to discuss the scope of their projects, goals, deadlines, and budgets.

“The best part of this work has been watching other writers blossom.”

Lisa Cooper Ellison

About Lisa Ellison Cooper

Lisa Ellison is a freelance writer, editor, and writing coach. She teaches memoir and the art of story telling at WriterHouse, a nonprofit writing center in Charlottesville, Virginia. Her work and life story are forthcoming or have appeared on NPR’s With Good Reason, and in The Kenyon Review, Huffington PostThe RumpusThe GuardianStreetlightGravel Literary Journal, The Rusty Nail, Charlottesville Family, and The Healthy Living Directory.

Helping writers harness the power
of their stories one word at a time.


“Lisa has read two manuscripts for me now, one a short piece of narrative nonfiction and one a full-length novel. Her feedback on both was excellent. She provided an overview document with detailed suggestions on the narrative arc, character development, and more. She also provided page-by-page suggestions and line edits on the entire manuscript. I would highly recommend Lisa even to the most experienced writer.”

“Since I’ve known Lisa Ellison (we met at the VQR conference in August 2015), her incisive commentary on my work has been extraordinarily helpful. It’s easy to see from the outset that she’s genuine and generous, and puts those traits to work in everything she does. Apart from the nuts-and-bolts mechanics of writing, which she is also good at, she got me to see my work in a different way and to imagine new possibilities. What more could you ask for?”

Phil Quam, Indonesia, author of “Inmates” published in Word Riot

“Lisa is both an accomplished teacher and very talented practitioner of mindful writing. She is a very capable, empathic and insightful writing teacher, who creates and sustains a safe, warm space for students to learn and become successful mindful writers themselves. Lisa is nurturing, attentive and generous — everything one wants in a teacher of such a practice. Students will benefit from her kind, insightful and truly mindful attention, and will grow under her tutelage and guidance.”

Rita Hart, book publisher in Melbourne, Australia

Slow Pieces Blog

Heart Speak Column #1: Getting Alice Out of Wonderland

Interested in learning how truth is stranger than fiction, the formula for figuring out your book, and what to do with your genre-bending book idea? Check out Heart Speak, The Memoir Writing Advice Column #1: Getting Alice Out of Wonderland, on my monthly Heart Speak...

Writing Is Your Gift: How to Share It With Others During The Holiday Season

The holidays are upon us. Whether you celebrate Hanukkah, Kwanzaa, Christmas, New Year’s, the Solstice, or Festivus (for the rest of us), the end of the calendar year is filled with opportunities to celebrate all that is good in our lives. As we close out the year, I invite you to view your writing as a gift rather than a vocation. Instead of imagining grand pieces you’ll one day submit for publication, let your art have a simple, rich, and immediate effect on someone else.

Harnessing the Fast Draft: Eight Essential NaNoWriMo Tips

There’s something about the end of the year that inspires us to produce more work. Perhaps it’s that extra hour of sleep we gained at the end of daylight savings time or the promise of feasting and family time motivates us to sit in our chairs. Maybe, with time running out, we can no longer ignore our inner procrastination monster’s frightening roar.

Contact Lisa

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