Devil Dog, by David Talbot, designed by Norma Tennis for Simon & Schuster

We edit and design great books!

Let us make your work shine

We can  do the whole project:

  • Edit your manuscript to perfection
  • Design interior and cover
  • Take it all the way to printed and digital form.

Or provide editorial and/or design services at an hourly rate.

Why work with us?

We are highly talented visual and literary craftspeople. We are also great communicators. We know the book business. We have experience. We have patience. If the process is new to you, we will explain each phase clearly. If you are a veteran, we will speak your language.

Who are we?

I (Cary Tennis) handle the editorial side. I am a writer and editor with 30 years of experience in journalism and publishing. Norma Tennis handles the design. She is an incredible designer. Look at these books she did for the Talbot Players. For that project with Simon & Schuster, Norma created a rich visual language steeped in pulp adventure, comics, tabloid magazines and lurid retro illustrations.

She can also produce traditional, solid, cost-effective layout for self-published and indie-press books such as the Mamas Write book, and the Benjamin Wachs book A Guide to Bars and Nightlife in the Sacred City, which we published with CreateSpace under the indie imprint Strange Castle Press. Norma also designed our whole series of advice column compilations, which are really first-class books, especially the first one, Since You Asked.

What does it cost?

Our prices depend on the depth of the project, the amount of time needed and, frankly, how much we love it. We can estimate a whole project and put a cap on the maximum cost. Or we can charge by the hour in a pay-as-you-go arrangement. Give us a call and let’s talk about your project!  415 308-5685. Or email us:


Pay what it’s worth to you. What a concept.

That’s right: For our great four-day writing retreat coming up May 16 through 19 in beautiful rural Connecticut, I have decided to do something radical yet sensible: I’m reducing the price, but rather than picking a percentage reduction, I decided to ask you, if you are interested in coming—and it is going to be really great—What would you like to pay?

Seriously. Here is the reasoning. I once went to a financial consultant who helped me a great deal with some business matters and the handling of money. When we were through I said how much and she said, “Pay me what it was worth to you.” What? I was shocked. But she had degrees in economics and had been genuinely helpful to me, and she sounded serious. So I had to think, on the spot, about what it was actually worth. I wrote her a check for what it was worth to me. The experience was empowering. I realized the world wouldn’t fall apart if we picked our own price, and that there’s no shame in talking about what something is actually worth to you. I realized that we could trust each other make a rational exchange. And I continued to benefit from her services and expertise.

Now I’m putting that lesson into practice. So if you would like to come but have hesitated because the price wasn’t right for you, pick a price that’s right for you.

Email me at and suggest a price you can pay. The best offers will get rooms and we’ll all have a fantastic four days writing and doing workshops with me and with Pat Schneider.

Simple as that. Let me know. And if it’s not right for you but might be good for a friend, just forward this to a friend! Or tweet it, or retweet it, or Facebook it, using the buttons on this page, or however you share things that interest you and make sense for the world.
Cary T.