Who are these people, anyway? Check out our “chops” here in the form of both traditional C.V. material and a few little known facts.
As founder and principal of Book Architecture, Stuart has spent over twenty years helping writers become authors, signing with top literary agencies, sealing deals with coveted publishing houses, or forging a successful path through indie publishing. Book Architecture’s clients have reached the New York Times best-seller list in both fiction and non-fiction, and have appeared on Oprah!, The Today Show, The Tonight Show, and in the most prestigious journals in their respective fields.
Stuart’s approach is a synthesis of academic theories of narrative structure and his hands-on experience as an independent editor, book coach and ghostwriter. He has written three highly acclaimed books which together comprise the Book Architecture trilogy: Blueprint Your Bestseller: Organize and Revise any Manuscript with the Book Architecture Method, Book Architecture: How to Plot and Outline Without Using a Formula, and Finish Your Book in Three Drafts: How to Write a Book, Revise a Book, and Complete a Book While You Still Love It.
Stuart has toured the Book Architecture Method through over one hundred venues in North America. He is also an award-winning essayist and poet, and has taught writing at Grub Street of Boston and Brown University. He holds two masters degrees—one in Literary Aesthetics from NYU, which helps him a lot with this work—and one in East Asian Studies from Harvard with a concentration in Medieval Japanese Buddhism, which helps him get out of bed in the morning.
Madison Utley ghostwrote her first book mere months out of undergrad. When the client enlisted Stuart to oversee the project, he was somewhat wary of the inexperienced then 21-year-old. Seeing as you’re reading this blurb, you can guess how it went. Her talent and her instinct made her a natural.
Stuart was impressed enough to enlist her services on subsequent projects of his own and, eventually, to bring her on as a full-time member of the team. Even the most solitary among us revel in the enhanced processing speed and deepened emotional richness that come when we work closely with another who “gets it.”
Madison is a doer. The blend of humility and confidence she brings to her work means that she’s unphased by any challenge. Over the past five years of operating in this space, she has played a variety of roles for projects spanning all genres and lengths. Invariably, she gets the job done–and she does it well.
The same boldness and enthusiasm that marks her work is present in all aspects of her life. She runs marathons. She climbs mountains. She is a self-proclaimed visa wizard who has spent the past few years living on three different continents. Her drive to test her own limits uniquely equips her for client service in the writing field, as does the joy she feels in packaging others’ messages to help give them reach. We’re glad to have her on board.
Anita Mumm, of Mumm’s the Word Editorial Services, is our right-hand collaborator, favored content editor, and deep soul who is a perfect fit for many projects. Her clients range from New York Times and international bestsellers to first time novelists, who all agree that her eye for detail borders on the disturbing. Luckily, she balances it with friendly humor and a passion for helping writers succeed. She is based in Salida, Colorado and when you really get to know her she sends you videos of elk herds co-grazing with flocks of wild turkeys. Which, in the end, are more restorative than puppy videos.
Stephanie Craig is an editorial and portrait photographer with clients that bring her all over the country. Stephanie first discovered the medium of photography as a means to access the internal landscapes of those she loves most—individuals who have their own stories of adversity yet find power in being vulnerable to the camera. If you don’t believe us, try sitting for one yourself; you’ll watch a visual story of your life, your insecurities and bravery, challenges and passions, unfold before you in a way that is at once unsettling and deeply comforting. In her free time, Stephanie can be found hiking in Western Mass. with her dogs, reading, and working in the garden. All at once. She’s actually quite talented.
Annie Tucker has twenty years of experience in a variety of literary roles. Focusing on structure, voice, scene, character development, point of view, and thematic takeaways, she has worked on more than six hundred fiction and nonfiction books that have won a wide variety of awards. She is also an obsessive-compulsive copy editor (and trust us, that’s a quality you want someone to have when it comes to grammar). Annie has a BA in English from Harvard and completed UC Berkeley’s Professional Sequence in Editing.
Dave Stebenne is a 23-year veteran of the creative business, as an art director, editor and animator. Having worked in broadcast media, the toy industry, advertising, publishing, and the corporate design world, he has a wide base of expertise to draw from in his work with Chick ’n Coop Pictures. He and his wife, the photographer Kristin Stebenne, live in Lincoln, RI with their two incredibly cool, sweet and adorable kids. Dave is responsible for the stop-motion shorts featuring action figures that are hands-down the best part of the Book Architecture 5-year tour.
Andrew Boardman founded Manoverboard, a purpose-driven design firm that provides websites, identities, and communications strategy, after working with Oven Digital, one of the earliest and largest web consultancies in the world. Andrew holds an MFA from SUNY Albany and received a Fulbright Fellowship to study visual culture in Poland. He is the recipient of a New York Foundation for the Arts Fellowship, and currently serves as President of the provincial chapter of the Graphic Designers of Canada.
He also really cares about the world way more than the average person in terms of sustainable business practices and is writing a book about it.
Cara Buzzell is a freelance graphic designer on the faculty of the Rhode Island School of Design. In her book design, motion graphics and web design she focuses on storytelling through timing and pacing. The subject of her masters thesis was haunted attractions which could explain why over 20 percent of her work contain Jack-o’-lanterns. She has worked with Spotify, School of the Museum of Fine Arts, Harvard Arts and Humanities and the MIT Museum. She lives in Providence, RI, where we have found her door is always open and there’s always a good idea waiting for you.
Molly Regan is creative partner and cofounder of Providence-based graphic design firm Logica. She has over 17 years’ professional experience and a BFA from Rhode Island School of Design. With an eye toward colorful and cheerful graphics, she designs for a mix of local and international clients like Book Architecture, Hasbro, Kiss 108 FM, Cleverhood, and Swarovski.
When she’s not working, you’ll find Molly fixing up her lovable 160-year-old home in Providence’s historic Federal Hill. Sometimes when we stare at Molly’s cover for Book Architecture: How to Plot and Outline Without Using a Formula, it feels like going to yoga and the art museum at the same time.
Michele DeFilippo is the founder of 1106 Design, a Phoenix-based company that works with anyone who wants a beautiful book, meticulously prepared to industry standards. Michele founded 1106 because she wanted all books to look as professional as the mainstream books she designed for Crown Publishing in New York. 1106 provides a range of publishing solutions, including start-to-finish project management, which we can vouch for! If you don’t email them back and it’s your stuff we’re talking about, they’re going to keep coming til you get your results.