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editorial services, writer :
Matthew O'Brien
O'Brien Editing Services
Photo by Gilberto Campos

“You write to communicate to the hearts and minds of others what’s burning inside you. And we edit to let the fire show through the smoke.”—Arthur Plotnik

Matthew O’Brien is a writer, teacher, and editor with more than twenty years of experience. In 2021, Matt founded OES, a boutique, English-language editing service. OES specializes in fast, professional editing at an affordable price. It offers a personal experience in an industry that has become faceless and automated, and is diverse rather than niche. It edits books, short stories, poems, websites, news releases, and more.

Matt has authored three books—Beneath the Neon (Huntington Press 2007), My Week at the Blue Angel (Huntington Press 2010), and Dark Days, Bright Nights (Central Recovery Press 2020)—and his nonfiction has been published in several magazines and newspapers, including the Las Vegas Review-Journal, High Country News, AARP the Magazine, and the Denver Post. His fiction and poetry have appeared in Sandstone & Silver (Zeitgeist Press 2020), In the Shadow of the Strip (University of Nevada Press 2003), Interim, Red Rock Review, and other books and journals.

Matt was managing editor of the alt-weekly paper Las Vegas CityLife and senior managing editor of the city magazine Downtown ZEN. He has taught composition, business writing, and in the honor’s college at the University of Nevada, Las Vegas, and American lit, world lit, and AP lit at Escuela Americana, a top prep school in San Salvador.

Matt has a bachelor’s in history from the University of West Georgia and an MFA in creative writing from UNLV.

years experience: 20-plus
rates: For editing work, typically $35 to $40 an hour or two to three cents a word. Prices may vary, depending on demand, your deadline, the length of your document, and other factors.
Developmental editing, Proposal writing/editing, Research, Book Doctor, Line-editing, Copy editing, Proofreading, Writing, Ghost-writing, Copywriting, Technical writing, Fiction writing
General fiction, Mystery, Romance, Suspense/thriller, Fantasy/science fiction, Juvenile fiction, Reference, Biography, Computers/technology, Business/investing/finance, History, Religious, Mind/body/spirit, Health, Travel, Lifestyle, Cookbooks, Children's books, Sports, African-American, Science, Literary fiction, Poetry, Short stories
“As an Emmy Award-winning former broadcast journalist, I thought I knew how to write and edit. It wasn’t until my book publisher assigned Matt O’Brien to me that I realized what skill and talent is needed to be a good editor. Matt tirelessly and patiently edited my book until we both felt it was ready for publishing. My book would not be where it is now without his editing, and I am grateful to have met such a craftsman who not only is a great editor, but loves what he does.”—Sam L., author and motivational speaker

“I am 80 years old, have a master’s degree, and am a published playwright who has taken editing advice and courses over the years. I appreciate the accuracy and diligence Matt demonstrated in editing a novel manuscript I sent him. I wish I had received this quality of critical analysis four decades ago! Matt provided what no one else has been able to offer me and gave me a fighting chance to succeed in this highly competitive field.”—Frank F., playwright and aspiring novelist

“The absolute best in the business! There is not a subject, genre, style, or medium Matt is not a natural fit to bounce real, refined, or raw works off of. You don’t know it yet, but your writing needs this pro’s gentle-yet-sharp, red pen. I won’t let one of my pieces be seen in public without an O’Brien edit.”—Matt L., writer, editor, and professor

“Recently, I hired O’Brien Editing Services for editing work on my book and, as usual, Matt did a stellar job! I have used his editing services in the past, and when it came to this very important project he was the first person I called. On top of being easy going and pleasant, he is thorough, communicative, timely, and his price fits my budget. I highly recommend O’Brien Editing Services!”—Paul R., business owner

“I like working with O’Brien Editing Services because of how accessible and collaborative it is. Matt and I maintained contact throughout the editing process for my latest novel. He was quick and thorough, and also honest and gentle in his feedback. He helped bring some much-needed perspective to a book that I was a little too close to.”—Jeff D., author and journalist

“Matt edited several of my short stories and provided detailed feedback on word choice and plot and made the pieces tighter and more readable. His edits also made me a more conscious writer. When I applied to MFA creative-writing programs, I was admitted into the program of my choice on the merits of one of the stories Matt edited.” —Joe W., teacher and grad-school applicant

“Matthew O’Brien is an incisive and thoughtful editor whose intuition for what makes writing great comes from his intrinsic understanding of literary prose and the craft of storytelling. His feedback is constructive and encouraging. He has a knack for identifying and elevating a writer’s voice and strengths without over-inserting his own opinion. Above all, he is a gifted writer, which makes him an authority on turning a good idea into a captivating story.”—Krista D., short-story writer

“I’m from Iran and I write in Farsi, but some of my books and stories have been translated into English. After the translation, I passed one of my stories and novels on to Matt, and he helped both reach their potential. He improved not only the language and style, but, as a writer himself, he understood the essence and emotion of the works. He brought an editor’s eye and an artist’s heart to the projects.”—Moniro R., bestselling author

Passport to Shame (Central Recovery Press 2023; editor), May Cause Side Effects (Central Recovery Press 2022; editor), The Independent Voter (Routledge 2022; editor), Dark Days, Bright Nights (Central Recovery Press 2020; author), The Drowned (independently published 2019; English-language editor)
May Cause Side Effects (Central Recovery Press 2022; editor), The Independent Voter (Routledge 2022; editor), Dark Days, Bright Nights (Central Recovery Press 2020; author), The Drowned (independently published 2019; English-language editor), My Week at the Blue Angel (Huntington Press 2010; author), Beneath the Neon (Huntington Press 2007; author)
—MFA in creative writing
—Silver Pen award (for mid-career writers who are on course to make the Nevada Writers Hall of Fame)
—Nevada Arts Council fellowship grants (2007 and 2010)
—Nevada Better Newspaper Contest Outstanding Journalist (2006) and Journalist of Merit (2002)
—Well versed in AP, APA, MLA, and Chicago styles