I’m Justin M. Knipper, a writer and editor based in Portland, OR. Here’s a brief list of my recent editorial work.
The Ocean in My Ears, 2018
OiME was the first title I worked on at Ooligan Press. I came onto the project team just before its release, so in addition to proofreading digital and print versions of the book before release, I spent a lot of time with my team planning marketing strategy and doing local media outreach for book release events around town, back in the winter of 2018.
Breaking Cadence, 2019
Rosa del Duca
“From bean to bar” is the expression often used in the gourmet chocolate industry for chocolatiers that see the creation process from the beginning (the cocoa bean) to the finish product (the candy bar). With Breaking Cadence, I oversaw the project from the bean stage to full-on chocolate by the time I was finished with my time at Ooligan. I was in the office when the pitch was opened and raved about by colleagues, I was on the project team for the book once it was accepted for release by the press, and I ended up on the project team for the book once The Ocean in My Ears was released. I feel closer to this book than others because of how much time I spent with it at Ooligan Press, the various line edits and editorial notes drafted, the four or five passes at the book and watching it grow from an almost-formed idea to an impactful memoir raising discussions whenever its brought up. I was also the editor who pitched the idea of del Duca’s supplemental podcast that.
Dark Horse Comics, 2018
While I worked as an Editorial Assistant at Dark Horse Comics, I spent time working on a variety of projects that have since been released, including Disney’s Treasure Island, The Super Mario Encyclopedia, Guillermo del Toro’s Trollhunters, and many of the initial releases for the prestigious Berger Books imprint, something I’m so lucky to have been part of. For interested parties, I also documented Dark Horse’s editorial workflow for Ooligan Press in two articles for the press’s website. It was a great first-taste of serial publishing, and the mentors I worked with gave me a breadth of knowledge that I’m still tapping into today. It was an invaluable experience.
Comics A-Go-Go, 2018
Comics are one of my areas of specialty, and while at PSU I also earned my Comics Certificate through Portland State’s Comics postbaccalaureate program. One editorial project I took on at the university was Comics A-Go-Go, a collection of work from PSU’s Visual Language of Comics class. I offered professors Shannon Wheeler and Mark Russell to put something together for the class; as the only publishing Masters student, I felt like it’d be a great opportunity to actually edit comics, all under the supervision of industry pros. As for layout and such, I created the 46-page pamphlet-sized book in InDesign.
The Vanguard, 2018
Copy editor, Arts & Culture editor
I spent half of 2018 working for the Portland State Vanguard, the award-winning student-run newspaper at PSU. I first worked as a staff copy editor, then was hired as staff as the Arts & Culture section editor. What I enjoyed the most about my experiences with the Vanguard was the experience I gained in weekly publishing. Understanding how deadlines rule that world informs us on what we must do as editors, writers, designers and the like, and while the same applies to general book publishing, the tempo is about twice the speed as mainstream book publishing. I also enjoyed the flow of creativity in the offices between colleagues, something that’s more difficult to obtain when working as a freelancer. It was a good experience. And I’m still very proud of my “Holiday Havoc” headline.
Sabu: Silence, Scars & Superglue, 2019
My most recent wide-scope editorial project was on Sabu autobiography, Sabu: Silence, Scars & Superglue. Sabu is an innovative albeit controversial professional wrestler, and having the chance to be editor on the book was both a pleasure and a serious learning experience. I took this on outside of school as a freelance gig last summer; what was originally supposed to be a proofread for a friend turned into a full-on heavy copy edit and a few proofread passes. As freelancers, we’re hired guns, and sometimes we won’t always agree with the decisions of the author and/or ghostwriters involved, and here was where I put my head down and pieced this back together the best I could. The book was released in May and has been selling steadily since then.