A Life Derailed: My Journey With ALS, by Nate Methot
I was the author’s editor and writing coach. Together, we made readers feel what it was like for Nate to lose control of his body.
Nate Methot came to me with a difficult story. He had amyotrophic lateral sclerosis (ALS), more commonly known as Lou Gehrig’s disease. But from the beginning, he told me that nothing was off limits. He wanted readers to know what life was like for him. The result was an an incredible story of a young man whose body stopped cooperating with him. I was proud to be the author’s writing coach and editor on his book, A Life Derailed: My Journey With ALS.
We had an excellent partnership during the editing process. But I’ll let Nate tell the rest in a testimonial he left for me on the Reedsy editing service, which first brought us together.
I hired Howard as a developmental editor for my memoir. During the pandemic, I began to write down and put together stories from the last ten years of my life. I was diagnosed with ALS in 2011.
Howard helped me immensely in telling my story. He asked the right questions to help bring forth the full picture. He told me from the outset that his job was to make certain that my intent was coming through to the reader, a broad audience.
Howard got me to put more of myself in my stories. While I was sometimes only focused on the events themselves, he asked me to spend more time inside my own head. Tell us what you were thinking. How did you feel? Make us understand what it was like.
Howard was always responsive to my emails; usually he’d answer my questions within minutes. Because I have ALS and don’t have a strong voice, we communicated almost exclusively over email. I imagine that may have been frustrating for some editors, but Howard was very accommodating.
Howard has gone above and beyond to help guide me in the process of completing my first book. I’ve asked all sorts of questions that have nothing to do with the job he was hired to complete, and he has taken the time to answer them helpfully and thoroughly.
Howard has felt like a partner throughout. My memoir is much richer and more meaningful because of the direction he provided. I’d recommend him to any first-time author who needs both technical support, bigger picture guidance, and an experienced industry professional with whom to work.
— Nate Methot
Reedsy Discovery gave A Life Derailed a glowing review, even singling out the excellent editing! Nate Methot wrote a powerful book and I was happy to have played a role in helping him tell this important story.