Instagram: Hannah Vanvels
2020 Annual Contest Editor ✓
Mini-Event Editor ✓
Hannah VanVels is an editor, writer, and literary agent at Corvisiero Literary Agency. Hannah has worked various bookish jobs including a stint as a bookseller at Barnes & Noble, a freelance editor for scholarly and academic essays and journals, and most recently as the acquiring editor at a young adult imprint with HarperCollins Publishing. With nearly a decade of editorial work under her belt, Hannah made the jump to freelance editing. Her editing business was born out of a love for working closely with authors and coming alongside them to make their vision come to life on page. Hannah lives in West Michigan with her partner, two German Shepherds, and two cats.
- Contemporary fantasy – something with humor and heart and, duh, magic!
- Adventure – something like the Brendan Frasier version of The Mummy but with tweens
- Animals – a beautiful emotional story that involves animals and will probably make me cry
- Science Fiction - Character driven adventure stories that use technology in fun and engaging ways. Outer space settings!
- Fantasy – (dark, urban, contemporary, high—all of it!) I have a soft spot for reluctant heroes, who inevitable shouts, “I never asked for any of this!”
- Horror – Ghosts, witches, vampires, and contagions are very much welcome
- High concept contemporary – slow burn romances, girls supporting girls, friendship and friendship breakups, and self-love are some of my favorite themes
- Science Fiction - Accessible science fiction. Think Star Wars or Marvel movies. I'm looking for a strong grounded story in which you do not need to understand the ins and outs of time travel and quantum physics in order to follow along
- Thrillers - Stories with a tightly-knit, well-paced plot, clever and nuanced characters, and a twist that readers will never see coming.
- Horror – Gothic, witchy, atmospheric elements in a dark and devious story
- Fantasy – Bonus points if the MC isn’t the “Chosen One”
How can a manuscript’s first five pages make you sit up and take notice?
A killer first line is a must. I also like to have some sense of who the main character is/is going to be, some idea of the main thrust of the plot, and most of all an idea of the stakes.
What can writers expect from working with you during #RevPit, including communication?
Writing is an inherently personal art, so I am always aware of what a privilege it is for me as an editor to be entrusted with an author’s story. It is an editor’s job to help make an author’s work shine, so I like to make sure that I have a clear idea of an author’s editorial vision, and then I come alongside to help bring that vision to life in the shiniest way on page. Editing is a collaborative effort, and I’m always available to freak out, brainstorm, and be completely in your corner when it comes to your story.
What do you expect from writers during the #RevPit revision process, including communication?
Revising is HARD, and I expect writers to put in the work. I expect writers to be open to criticism, be willing to kill their darlings, and be honest and transparent in their communication with me.
What hobbies do you have outside of writing and editing?
I love traveling. Two of my favorite recent traveling adventures have been riding a camel through the Suq in Petra, Jordan, and feeding stingrays in the Cayman Islands!
What is your favorite book to reread, and why?
Leigh Bardugo is queen! I love both her YA and her adult. Memorable characters? Check! Morally gray heroes? Check! Magic and creepiness? Check!