What Our Clients Are Saying
“I would highly recommend FIRST READS for either an aspiring writer or a publisher wanting a polished manuscript ready for production. I found the tag team approach of Barbara Villaseñor and Myra Westphall an excellent choice to make sure that all bases were covered with two sets of eyes on the manuscript. The result was a clean, crisp, and well flowing read.”
Diana Lindsay, President, Sunbelt Publications
Award-winning Author
Ricardo Breceda: Accidental Artist
“Barbara and Myra at FIRST READS did an excellent job helping turn my manuscript into a professional work. Their commitment and editorial competence are first rate.”
Alan Uke
Buying America Back
“When I submitted my manuscript to Barbara and Myra, I didn’t know what to expect. They took the time to change it from what I wrote to what I had really wanted to write. They were incredibly encouraging, yet honest enough not to allow any distractions in the book to ruin the flow of the story. They kept the integrity and historical context intact, while rearranging it enough to keep it completely engaging. Without their years of expertise, I would have missed out on completing my book and reaching the audience it continues to reach.”
Robert Hayward
The Thirteenth Step
"I have worked with Barbara and Myra of FIRST READS when they assisted me with my book, HERNANDEZ AND THE GREAT SPIRIT. They reduced the size of my manuscript from 650 to 450 pages. I must grudgingly admit that the story went from good to spectacular! Would I use anyone else? Never!"
Albert Winnikoff
Best selling Author
The Land Game
“Barbara and Myra know what gets the attention of an agent or publisher and more importantly, they know what turns on a reader. They persuaded me to eliminate what was extraneous in my work and kept the focus on the story and my style in telling it. FIRST READS should be your first step."
Thornton Sully
Book Reviewer
The Boy with a Torn Hat
"Working with FIRST READS was a breakthrough experience. Between their no-nonsense advice, sound reason and good humor, they were able to keep me engaged enough to dissolve my resistance to change. They gave me the pointers and the push I needed to write a better story."
Blaise Ducker
The Moment Gatherers
“The best part about Barbara and Myra was that they somehow found that brilliant balance between encouragement and criticism. I am so grateful to have had the first read of my book performed by such capable editors. Writing is a process of putting yourself out there. Thanks to Barbara and Myra, the process was both educational and motivational.”
Kate Smith
The Mermaid work-in-progress
"FIRST READS has worked with me for a few years on my manuscript. The time lags are mine alone. Their comments and mark ups are on point every time. They work tirelessly with their writers with an intelligence that is sharp and incisive. Most importantly, they deliver the bad news with great humor! This cuts down on author suicide's and alcohol issues. I happily recommend FIRST. I happily recommend FIRST READS to anyone who wants support and/or insight."
Jeff Harris