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““I have gotten to know Bruce Bortz in the course of his editing and publishing the novels of a colleague and friend, Arch Montgomery, and then in the editing, publication and promotion of a novel of my own, Paul and Juliana. The latter was my fifteenth published book, and never in my writing life have I worked with someone who was more responsive, literarily acute, or more infectiously enthusiastic.

“Bruce is a fine writer, which, I suppose, is how he manages to be responsive and helpful to such a wide variety of texts and voices. He shares the kind of intelligence that can quickly come to terms with the literary task at hand, shape it, clarify it, tease it out into its best self. He is a good example of the kind of writer and editor who was at large when the publishing business was about advancing literature, not merely marketing. I recommend Bruce for his intelligence, writing acuity, and quick, courteous delivery of what he promises.”
—Richard Hawley, Author of The Headmaster’s Papers, Headmaster of Cleveland ’s University School , and founding president of the International Boys’ School Coalition

“In 1999, my novel, The Reappearance of Sam Webber, was published by Bruce Bortz’s Bancroft Press. It was a small work that was intensely dark and brooding. Upon Bruce’s request, I took it home and carefully lightened aspects of the story, however slightly, and gave it back. At that point, he said, ‘Enough.’

reappearance of Sam Webber“That ‘enough’ might sound minor, but it is actually huge. Knowing when to stop editing is as important as recognizing what a book needs, what is missing, and what should be missing. Bruce has a keen eye for these details. He has a great zeal for books and pages and rhythm and intention. Without his efforts, The Reappearance of Sam Webber would’ve lacked air. With his efforts, it breathed, and that breath fanned a fire.

“Bancroft Press, Bruce Bortz’s small, esteemed house, launched my career. Before The Reappearance of Sam Webber, I was an unpublished author. When all was said and done, just one year later, I was a multi-award winning writer with a well-known book and a very hot career. Bruce not only published the book, but he carried it through the ins and outs of the industry. He navigated treacherous terrain and got my work seen and read. I don’t believe there are many people out there with his singular ability and desire.

“Would I hire Bruce to handle my work? Absolutely! He can guide a writer through the intricacies of a story arch to the final, polished product. Then, if need be, he can carry a book through secret, often-closed passageways, from anonymity to prominence.

“Since my days with Bancroft, I have published another award-winning novel with Candlewick Press. This winter (2003-04), I had a third novel come out. Since 1999, I have had a children’s book published by Houghton Mifflin, and a graphic novel published by Warner Bros./Vertigo. I now have a readership at home and overseas, and, obviously, I have worked with numerous editors. Bruce is very talented. That’s rare.

“Now, I should say, I don’t think any individual can create this type of magic every time. That would be impossible. But I have no doubt that a man as driven as Bruce to show the world beautiful, important works of literature will get luckier—if luck is what you call it—far more frequently than many in the industry can possibly imagine.”
—JonathAn Scott Fuqua

“I am happy to learn that Bancroft Press is entering the editing/ghostwriting business. Its wonderful services are much needed. Many writers I know have interesting and very provocative book ideas—ideas that, if well constructed, could be fashioned into good, marketable books that will sell well. But these days, unlike in the past, many editors at most large commercial publishers are so overwhelmed, they have very little time to help an author shape a book—even one with significant potential. I’ve found editors unable to spend time even talking with me about an array of ideas I wanted to incorporate into books they’d just purchased. The response I received was, ‘Just go ahead and put it in the book. I’ll see how it works.’

Last of the Black Emperors“Any writer will attest to the fact that the relationship with an editor is key to his or her success, and, truthfully, to the success of a book. My friends and I frequently lament the absence of this close working and nurturing relationship. However, I and many of my fellow book writers have pledged to spend our own money, if necessary, to have that important interaction with an editor willing to take the time to understand what we’re trying to achieve with our books and help us reach that goal.

“Because of his work on my first book, I wouldn't hesitate to employ Bruce Bortz or his company as an editor. I want and very much need not simply a good, competent editor, but one who’ll take the time to understand what I want to accomplish in a book, and in so doing, help me become a better writer. I certainly will tell my friends about the availability of Bancroft’s services. Given Bruce Bortz ’s incomparable skills, it should be a supreme success.”
-- Jonetta Rose Barras , author of the acclaimed Last of the Black Emperors (Bancroft Press, 1998) and Daddy’s Little Girl (Ballantine One World, 2000)

 “I’ve had the privilege to work with Bruce Bortz on several writing and editorial projects. He is the master! When ghostwriting, he has a unique talent for drawing out those things from the author that make a difference to the storyline. When editing, he instinctively knows what needs to be done to the manuscript in order for it to touch its reader with the greatest impact. And he always has the long-term interest of the project in mind. He begins planning the marketing campaign the first day he is introduced to a work, including how the cover should look and how to gain the most attention from the media. I got much more than I expected from Bruce and highly recommend him as an integral member of any publishing team.”
—Jill Bertolet, Publisher, Tapestry Press

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