Paula Derrow Modern Love

paula derrow

a way with words

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First, there was the gazebo workshop...

"For Gorge, Paula Derrow served as my mentor and muse in her amazing Connecticut glass-bottom gazebo retreat." 

--Kara Richardson-Whitely

Read the review of Gorge in The New York Times Book Review.


Paula is, hands down, the best editor I've ever worked with: smart, intuitive, collaborative, hands on--and off--when appropriate. She is the standard by which I judge other editors, and not many reach the bar she's set. -- Elizabeth DeVita Raeburn, author The Empty Room (Scribner)

Paula Derrow is one of the best editors I've ever worked with. And I have worked with a lot of editors, because I am as old as the hills. If you're lucky enough to do an essay with Paula, you'll see just how tough and brilliant and emotionally real she is: She won't let you be glib, and she's amazing at both the craft and the heart of writing -- she will not ever let you descend to cliche or maudlin crap. She's blindingly fast and decisive. She returns calls immediately. She's collaborative in the best way -- you always feel as though you're on the same team, which isn't true of every editor. If you have never worked with Paula, I feel sorry for you.-- Marjorie Ingall, author, Mamelah Knows Best (Crown); columnist, Tablet

Paula Derrow is the most insightful, talented, nurturing magazine editor I have every worked with. I've written dozens of articles for her at Self. Without fail, she made huge improvements on the surface, asked the right questions that forced me to go deeper and find the emotional core of each story. -- Val Frankel, author of numerous memoirs including Thin is the New Happy and It's Hard Not to Hate You

Now, there's the

terrace workshop!

Got a personal essay or two you want to polish--and publish? Struggling with a chapter  of your memoir? In this day-long writing workshop on a spacious terrace overlooking Central Park and the Manhattan skyline, you'll get a close edit and critique of your work from Paula Derrow, and your fellow students (maximum of 8), plus snacks, coffee...and wine! Email me at for details. 

Coming soon to a terrace near you.