While Indigo headquarters are in Portland, Oregon, members of the team hail from across the country. Each of these professionals works full time in the publishing industry and has a minimum of five years' professional experience as an editor, designer, or both. Each editor specializes in various genres, though services are not limited to these specialties. You can rest assured that the Indigo team will offer expert guidance on every project.
Founder & Executive Editor Ali McCart Shaw
Ali thinks her love for the written word might have something to do with the pungent odor of ink and the methodic sounds from her parents’ printing press, which permeated her senses before she even knew how to read. She has a bachelor’s degree in English from Willamette University and a master’s degree in book publishing from Portland State University. She also spent two years as a bookseller and sometimes still itches to create front-of-store displays. Since 2005, she’s edited a diverse range of nonfiction authors from Ram Dass to Rodney King, from Chade-Meng Tan to Kim Barnouin, and many emerging writers. Her own nonfiction has been published in Hippocampus Magazine and the anthology Celebrating Animal Rescue. She was a 2015 finalist for the Victoria A. Hudson Prize.
Ali's services: developmental editing, line editing, proofreading
Genres: nonfiction, memoir, and short narrative nonfiction; young adult fiction and nonfiction; and design-heavy materials such as calendars
Collaborative Editor Susan DeFreitas
Susan is an author, editor, and educator whose creative work has been featured in over thirty periodicals and anthologies. She is the author of the novel Hot Season (Harvard Square Editions, 2016) and the chapbook Pyrophitic (ELJ Publications, 2014), as well as a contributor at LitReactor and a regularly featured presenter at writing conferences throughout the Pacific Northwest. She holds an MFA in writing from Pacific University.
Susan's services: coaching and developmental editing
Genres: literary and genre fiction
Collaborative Editor Laura Garwood
Laura was born with a book in her hand. At the age of eight, she won a school-wide book-cover illustration contest, and she started telling people she wanted to be an "author-slash-illustrator." Since then, she has dropped some of the visual-art dreams, but she still loves books—reading, editing, and hopefully someday writing—with a passion.
After receiving a BA in English from UCLA and an MA in book publishing from Portland State University, Laura started her career working as senior editor for Ink & Paper Group. Since launching her freelance career, she has edited for Ken Arnold Books, Ink & Paper Group, the Hollywood Star News, intentionally urban magazine (where she also served as lifestyle department editor), the Portland Bridge calendar, and many individuals. Outside of work, she enjoys chasing her three young children, being active outdoors, and cooking and baking.
Laura's services: developmental editing, line editing, proofreading
Genres: nonfiction; historical, women's, and young adult fiction; children's books; and academic works
Collaborative Editor Kristen Hall-Geisler
Kristen spent four years working her way up the editorial ladder as a proofreader, copy editor, and managing editor of Sports Car Market magazine, then struck out on her own as a freelance editor and automotive journalist. She has edited a wide variety of books, including self-help, memoir, YA, spiritual, and fantasy novels of the sword-and-sorcery variety. Her automotive articles have been published in the New York Times, Details, Oregon Business, and on websites such as HowStuffWorks.com and VroomGirls.com. She is also the author of Take the Wheel: A Woman's Guide to Buying a Car Her Own Damn Self, which came out in 2013.
Kristen’s services: developmental editing, line editing, proofreading
Genres: nonfiction and memoir, historical fiction
Collaborative Editor Jennifer Zaczek
Jenn knew she wanted to be an editor ever since she learned how to diagram sentences in seventh grade. She’s been working in publishing since 2006, holding positions such as managing editor for an academic publisher and editorial project manager for a multipurpose publishing company. She also spent time copyediting and writing for two newspapers and evaluating manuscripts for The Florida Review literary journal. She holds a bachelor’s degree in creative writing with a minor in magazine journalism. Jenn has experience editing and proofreading both fiction and nonfiction and loves the variety in her work. She lives in Portland, Oregon, where she enjoys the city’s vibrant literary scene and the abundant outdoor opportunities the Pacific Northwest has to offer.
Jenn’s services: proofreading
Genres: general fiction and nonfiction
Collaborative Editor Dehlia McCobb
Dehlia has worked in the book industry in a variety of roles. She received a BA in English from the University of Oregon and an MA in book publishing from Portland State University. While at PSU, she was a member of the editing team for the student-run publishing house, Ooligan Press, and her career as a freelance editor has included editing work for Thomas Riggs & Company and proofreading work for Penguin Random House. She was also a volunteer coordinator for Portland’s local Wordstock literary festival for four seasons. A longtime employee of Powell’s Books, she can often be found in the flagship store’s Rare Book Room, where she specializes in antiquarian and collectible books. When she’s not reading, writing, bookselling, or editing (and when it’s not raining), she enjoys going for bike rides in the countryside around Portland.
Dehlia’s services: developmental editing, line editing, proofreading
Genres: general fiction and nonfiction
Collaborative Designer and Publications Consultant Vinnie Kinsella
Vinnie’s love for book creation began in the second grade, when he worked with his fellow students to write and illustrate a story about the adventures of an ice-cream-loving giraffe. Since then he has worked as a writer, editor, book designer, publisher, workshop presenter, and college instructor. He currently uses his broad knowledge of the publishing industry to assist and educate independent authors and publishers. He is the author of A Little Bit of Advice for Self-Publishers. Vinnie lives in Portland, Oregon, where he can often be found sitting in a coffee shop with a book in one hand and a cappuccino in the other. You can see examples of his design work here.
Vinnie's services: guiding independent publishers through the publication process, book interior and cover design, ebook conversion, editing
Genres: fiction, nonfiction, and poetry design; poetry and LGBTQ editing
Collaborative Designer Olivia M. Croom
Olivia is a graphic designer living in New York City. When asked what she wanted to be when she grew up, Olivia replied, "Bookmaker." That journey has taken her from her hometown of Albuquerque, New Mexico, to Portland, Oregon, and now to New York City. Olivia has worked with a number of literary organizations to produce high-quality marketing materials and, of course, books. She holds a master's degree in writing and book publishing from Portland State University. You can find her on Twitter at @OliviaCroom and Instagram at @reddish.ampersand. You can see examples of her design work here.
Olivia's services: book interior and cover design, print marketing collateral (postcards, easels, newsletters, etc.), document layout
Genres: fiction and nonfiction
Marketing and Publicity Specialist Brian Ridder
Brian’s parents, both teachers, taught him to read at an early age, and he has been inspired (and often humbled) by the written word ever since. He has spent nearly a decade as a publishing generalist but prefers the fun and fast pace of marketing and publicity. He currently works at Timber Press where he is responsible for outreach to academic, library, and professional markets in addition to assisting Indigo authors. He holds a bachelor’s degree in media production from the Evergreen State College and a master’s degree in writing and book publishing from Portland State University. He is currently working on a hard-boiled detective series.
Brian's services: marketing and publicity
Genres: fiction and nonfiction
Indexer Lisa Kleinholz
Lisa is a veteran indexer who has worked on projects big and small. Among her favorites have been books by Rick Atkinson (Liberation Trilogy), Atul Gawande (Being Mortal), Elizabeth Kolbert (The Sixth Extinction), and Elizabeth Warren (This Fight Is Our Fight). But tops on her list is the late, great comedian George Carlin, who hired her to create indexes of his jokes. In her free time, Lisa writes novels and has published two mysteries—Exiles on Main Street and Dancing with Mr. D. The mother of two grown daughters, she lives in Massachusetts with her musician husband.
Lisa’s services: indexing
Genres: nonfiction, especially academic, mainstream, and self-help on the subjects of African-American studies, art, business, computing, cooking, environmentalism, feminism, health, history, how-to, law, literature, music, politics, religion, and travel