Mark is an instructor of Novel Writing at the UCLA Extension Writers Program. He teaches upper level classes most semesters, and you can see if he is teaching any current courses here.

Mark also offers private consultations ranging from detailed manuscript editing to one-on-one coaching sessions. His clients have won contests, gotten agents and been accepted in MFA programs. For more information about availability, pricing and testimonials, please email him through the Contact page.


"I had been stuck with an El Capitan-sized block in my novel when I signed up for Mark Sarvas’s advanced novel-writing course in the Summer of 2016. Not only did that block suddenly melt (probably because Mark takes no prisoners when it comes to any kind of stoppage) but I was able to complete the first draft by the end of the year. Mark has the extraordinary ability to laser in on any literary knot and show you how to unpick it.  His teaching style is clear, succinct, informative, and memorable. He provides reading strategies that expand your ability to see your own writing with new objectivity. This is a teacher who provides considered and insightful feedback while encouraging the writer to do her work to the very highest standard. I cannot recommend him highly enough!" - Sandra H.

"Mark is insightful, specific, and patient.  With the benefit of his notes and subsequent discussions, I've made significant improvements, both in my manuscript and my writing.  I highly recommend Mark as an editor and mentor." - Donn D.

"After three years of working on my first novel, alone and in workshops, I'd taken it as far as I could go. Mark's heedful, detailed notes helped me take the book to the level and prepare it (and me) to send out into the world with confidence. I've never had a better reader, including those in my Masters program. I recommend Mark's services to writers of every skill and experience level without reservation." - Jay O.

"Mark Sarvas has been essential to the progress of my work. He has been capable, conscientious, patient, insightful, and consistently encouraging, and has provided the structure for me to turn a good story into a novel I'm proud of." - JoAnne M.

"Mark Sarvas is a rare and extrordinary editor/ writing teacher  -- thoughtful, meticulous, but demanding. He will not shy away from genuine critique, but always with the aim of helping you find your best voice, and always with the caveat that all literary choices belong not to the critic, but to the writer.  Run, do not walk, if you have a chance to work with Sarvas. " - Miranda H.

"Mark’s comments are insightful, and perhaps more important, targeted. Not the type to impose upon a work, his edits are always in service of your vision. Mark just knows what good writing is. Trust him and he’ll work to get the most out of your talents." - Sam S.

"Mark Sarvas is deeper in his craft than any of the many writing instructors and editors I’ve had in the past twenty years. Simply put, he has taken my work to an entirely new level. With his guidance, I have jettisoned baggy exposition, tightened and strengthened narrative structure, and brought scene, character and dialogue to more vivid and dimensional life. Mark is as facile with the big questions – what story do I want to tell, from whose point of view and toward what end – as he is with the “small” ones of voice, coherence, and, yes, the poetry of the prose.  He is an unfailingly generous and empathic critic who inches me forward in the direction I want to go while at the same time casting a strict and practiced eye on strength and weaknesses of the work. He's a rare find in a crowded field." - Vickie P.