2nd Draft Editors: Writing a Query Letter

Our 2nd Draft writing editors will give you expert writing advice on your query letter. They will provide a writing critique and tips on how to write a query letter for a novel, memoir, or nonfiction book. If you want writing advice from published authors, an honest writing critique, and guidance on revising your work then our 2nd Draft service is for you! Many of our critique editors are also WDU online workshop instructors.

Meet the Editors

Jack Adler

Jack Adler is a writer/journalist/teacher based in Los Angeles. He has had numerous nonfiction and fiction books published. Two books published in 2013 are Soulmates From The Pages Of History and The Apostate (Sunbury Press). Another novel, The Impresario of Terror, was published in 2014 by Sunbury. He's also had plays produced, one published, and has received a grant from the Yaddo Foundation. He teaches various writing courses at UCLA Extension and online for the Writer's Digest University. 

Mort Castle

Mort Castle is a horror author and a writing teacher who has published over 500 short stories. Twice a winner of the Black Quill award, seven times a Bram Stoker Award nominee, Castle edited On Writing Horror, the primary reference work for dark fiction authors. Mort specialized in horror, dark fantasy, literary, historical, how-to, Pop Fiction, comics/graphic novel. 

Jess Dallow

She has a BFA in Writing for Film and Television from the University of the Arts and worked in entertainment for eight years before returning to her home state of NY where she worked at a literary agency for two years before joining Brower Literary & Management. Jess specialized in YA, adult. contemporary, thriller, romance, crime, & women's fiction.

Margaret Danko

Originally from the heart of the south, Margaret Danko received her BA from Oberlin College before pursuing an MFA from Temple University. While there, she climbed the ranks to become an editor of TINGE Magazine, publishing fiction, essays, and poetry. She has worked as a freelance editor and media consultant. A lover of the dark, the quirky, and the fantastical, Margaret has a keen eye for projects that take unexpected turns or are told from unusual perspectives. Margaret specializes in literary fiction with teeth, historical fiction with a dash of magical realism, fresh literary and commercial suspense, spooky contemporary and fantasy YA, narratives with a deep sense of place and history, quirky and heartwarming family stories, and rom-coms full of charm and whimsy. She is also interested in nonfiction in the areas of humor, lifestyle, popular science, health/wellness, true crime, and current affairs. 

Ashley Golden

Coming soon.


Jackie Lindert

Jackie holds a B.A. in professional writing and book publishing from the University of Wisconsin-Whitewater and a certificate from the Denver Publishing Institute. After nearly a decade working in NYC at both literary agencies and a big 5 publisher, they are now based in Chicago and splits their time working for a literary scouting agency and freelance editing. Jackie specializes in middle grade, young adult, and adult fiction of all genres (and select narrative non-fiction), but is especially drawn to commercial fantasy and sci-fi; contemporary women’s fiction; LGBTQ characters; and all coming-of-age stories.  

Cherri Randall

Cherri Randall teaches creative writing at the University of Pittsburgh at Johnstown. She has an MFA in poetry and a PhD in English literature from the University of Arkansas. She has published in Blue Earth Review, Mudfish, The Potomac Review, So to Speak and several other journals as well as the anthology Impact (Telling Our Stories Press). Her favorite writers include Toni Morrison, Anne McCaffrey, and Lee Child.

Jordan E. Rosenfeld

Jordan E. Rosenfeld has been writing for the better part of 20 years. She holds a B.A. in Liberal Arts from the Hutchins School and an MFA in Creative Writing and Literature from the Bennington Writing Seminars. Jordan has taught private writing workshops at a wide range of institutions including the Sebastopol Center for the Arts, Gavilan College, the California Writer’s Club, and at conferences such as East of Eden and Mendocino Writers’ Conferences.

Jeff Suess

Jeff Suess is the author of Lost Cincinnati, Hidden History of Cincinnati, Cincinnati Then and Now, AAC 150, Cincinnati: An Illustrated Timeline, and Tomorrowland: The Past, Present, and Future of Disney’s Most Changed Land. He is a history columnist and librarian at the Cincinnati Enquirer. Jeff also writes fiction and has had stories published by Pocket Books, Post Mortem Press, and DC Comics. Jeff specializes in science fiction, fantasy, historical non-fiction, historical fiction.

Terri Valentine

The writing career of romance novelist Terri Valentine is truly a Cinderella story. An avid reader all of her life, she began writing her first historical romance in the summer of 1985 on an old Smith-Corona manual typewriter. To date, she has ten romance novels and a Christmas short story in publication. Sweet Paradise was nominated for Best Romance Adventure by Romantic Times and Louisiana Caress received a coveted K.I.S.S (Knight in Shining Silver) Award from Romantic Times. At present she is under contract for two more historicals, and she is currently working on a high-concept romantic novel that her agent anxiously awaits. She has also written a screenplay that is in production rewrites.