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5E, a collective of like-minded editors with experience at New York's top publishing houses, was founded in 2011 by Judy Sternlight, along with Patricia Mulcahy, Jane Rosenman, Joan Hilty, and Marjorie Braman. 

Meeting monthly to swap industry news and tips, the members of 5E work separately (see sites) but are all devoted to helping writers reach their full creative potential in a variety of media. They are also committed to sharing their knowledge in the form of workshops, panel discussions, and individual mentoring at venues such as Grub Street in Boston, the Brooklyn Book Festival, the Miami Book Fair, and the Center for Fiction in New York. Each member also contributes material to 5E’s newsletter. They maintain close ties with industry professionals such as agents and in-house editors and publishers. 

In July 2015 Marjorie Braman passed away after a long battle with cancer. She was warmly remembered at a memorial at the Center for Fiction. 

Editors Leslie Wells and Liz Van Hoose joined 5E in early 2016. In August 2016, Joan Hilty joined Nickelodeon as Comics and Magazine Editor and stepped into an advisory role to 5E.

Judy STernlight

Judy Sternlight spent nearly a decade editing books at Random House, Ballantine, and Modern Library before founding Judy Sternlight Literary Services. Prior to her career in publishing, she performed and taught improvisational theater with Some Assembly Required in New York City. Judy recently edited The Brown Reader: 50 Writers Remember College Hill (Simon and Schuster, 2014) and has worked with many acclaimed writers including Elliot Ackerman, Marie-Helene Bertino, Rita Mae Brown, Gwen Florio, Bret Anthony Johnston, Peter Matthiessen, and Daniel Menaker. For more information: www.Judysternlightlit.com.


Prior to becoming an independent editor, Jane Rosenman was an Executive Editor at Houghton Mifflin, Scribner, and St. Martin's Press. She was also Editorial Director at Washington Square Press. Jane has edited fiction writers such as Andrea Barrett, Elinor Lipman, Howard Norman, and Meg Wolitzer. In the memoir category, she has worked with Alice Sebold and with Mira Bartok. Jane now edits for publishers, agents, and individual writers. For more information, visit www.linkedin.com/in/janerosenman..


Liz Van Hoose offers editorial, book doctoring, and writing services to authors, agents, and trade book publishers. For more than a decade, she worked in the editorial departments of Viking Penguin and Alfred A. Knopf, where she edited a wide range of fiction and nonfiction, including works by Martin Clark, Ron Currie, Jr., Kim Edwards, Alex Gilvarry, Garrison Keillor, William Kittredge, Robert Love, Dan Morrison, Haruki Murakami, Jim Shepard, Amor Towles, Jessica Maria Tuccelli, and Danielle Trussoni. She has been a guest editor for writers’ conferences at Bread Loaf, Sewanee, and Aspen Summer Words, where she served on the faculty in 2015. Visit www.lizvanhoose.com.


Patricia Mulcahy is a former publisher who started as a temp at Farrar Straus and Giroux and left as editor in chief at Doubleday. Since 1999 she has run the editorial consulting service Brooklyn Books (see www.brooklynbooks.com). Her clients include musician and media mogul Quincy Jones; NBC’s Andrea Mitchell; former White House advisor Karen Hughes; and Acumen Fund CEO Jacqueline Novogratz. She is the co-author of It is Well with My Soul: The Extraordinary Life of a 106-year Old Woman, Ella Mae Cheeks Johnson (Penguin, 2010) and Making Masterpiece: 25 Years Behind the Scenes at Masterpiece and Mystery! On PBS, Rebecca Eaton (Viking, 2013).


Leslie Wells spent two decades at Hyperion as an Executive Editor; prior to that, she was a Senior Editor at Pocket Books and E. P. Dutton. She is now an independent editor who works with publishers, literary agents, and individuals on both fiction and nonfiction. She has worked with such authors as Mitch Albom, Candace Bushnell, Rebecca Wells, Julie Andrews, Katherine Howe, Michelle Knight, and Michael J. Fox. For more information and author testimonials, see www.lesliewellseditorial.com.



Joan Hilty specializes in graphic novels, illustrated books and transmedia; she was at DC Comics from 1995-2010 and left as a senior editor at its Vertigo imprint. As both an independent editor and through her boutique book production company Pageturner, she has worked with Farrar Straus & Giroux, Abrams, Inkwell Management, Levine Greenberg Literary, and Blue Man Productions. Authors she’s worked with include Neil Gaiman, G. Willow Wilson, Greg Rucka, Gene Luen Yang, Jim Ottaviani, and Kevin Baker. She is a former syndicated cartoonist, a current member of Powderkeg Writers in Brooklyn, and teaches at the School of Visual Arts in NYC. She serves on programming committees for Miami Book Fair International and the Brooklyn Book Festival. For more information, visit www.joanhilty.net.

"Life happens the way it happens—once." — M.B.

"Life happens the way it happens—once." — M.B.


After a 26-year career in publishing, most recently as Editor-in-Chief of Henry Holt, Marjorie Braman went on to work independently with writers, agents and publishers, while also serving as a strategic advisor at Open Road Integrated Media.  Her authors included Michael Crichton, Elmore Leonard and Sena Jeter Naslund.  Marjorie passed away in July of 2015; her life and work were honored at the Center for Fiction in October of that year.