Virginia Tolles, Wordsmith

Writing and Editing for You

Meet the Wordsmith


I have been editing professionally for nearly 30 years! I began editing newsletters for the United States Air Force. Within a matter of months, they asked me to edit technical documentation.  Some years later, I taught writing classes to course developers at the Internal Revenue Service. I went on from there to edit technical documentation for the Federal Aviation Administration.

In addition to editing for government agencies, I edited for the academic community in the fields of engineering, biochemistry, medicine, and several business disciplines. You may read a partial list of articles I edited on the page "Edited Documents."

In my own right, I have written and published four books, including two novels and two anthologies; an article on merchant mariners at work on the Mississippi River; and a research paper on photograph copyrights for web designers. I have written blogs under contract on such topics as selecting the right location for a new business. You may read two of the articles on the page "Published Articles."


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Education and Training

B.A., Mississippi State University
         Major: Political Science
         Focus: Pre-Law, Business Law
         Honors: Invited to join the Drennon Scholars (honorary writer's group sponsored by the English Department)
                       Elected secretary of the Pre-Law Club
Technical Editing & Writing, Texas A&M University
         Recommended for master's degree program by Dr. Helen Barthelme
Fundamentals of Technical Writing, University of Memphis
Writing Technical Documents, University of Memphis
Magazine Writing, Northshore Technical Community College
Mystery Writing, Northshore Technical Community College
Screenwriting, Northshore Technical Community College
Travel Writing, Northshore Technical Community College
Writing Descriptive Settings, Northshore Technical Community College
Information Mapping Workshop, Internal Revenue Service
Job Aids Workshop, Internal Revenue Service
Basic Instructor Training, Internal Revenue Service
Test Item Writing Workshop, Internal Revenue Service
Contracting Officer's Technical Representative Training, Internal Revenue Service


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Honors and Awards

Tales Along the Way Home was selected by The Writer’s Edge for inclusion in its report to  publishers.

Volunteer, American Red Cross (Prince William Chapter), Manassas, Virginia

Letter of Appreciation, American Red Cross (Prince William Chapter), Manassas, Virginia

Member, Advisory Board, Virginia Railway Express (commuter rail system)

Promotion to Acting Publications Supervisor, ITT Industries - Advanced Engineering & Sciences Division (Federal Aviation Administration Contractor), Washington DC

Memorandum of Appreciation, Lead, Telecommunications Services Management Team, Federal Aviation Administration, Washington DC

Memorandum of Appreciation, Program Manager, FAA Telecommunications Support Contract, ITT Industries – Advanced Engineering & Sciences Division, Washington DC

Memorandum of Appreciation, Publications Group Lead, ITT Industries – Advanced Engineering & Sciences Division, Washington DC

Commitment Letter, Deputy Program Manager, Intellisource Information Services, Washington DC

Member, Friends of the Bull Run Library, Manassas, Virginia

Member, Manassas Museum Associates, Manassas, Virginia

Promotion to Associate Editor, American Society of Cataract & Refractive Surgery, Fairfax, Virginia

Letter of Appreciation, Chief, Ogden Service Center, Internal Revenue Service, Washington DC

Letter of Appreciation, Chief, Quality Section, Training Division, Internal Revenue Service, Washington DC

Member, Joint Functional/Training/Publications Committee to Acquire Braille Publications, Internal Revenue Service, Washington DC

Manager's Award, Chief, Compliance Branch, Training Division, Internal Revenue Service, Washington DC

Letter of Appreciation, Chief, Compliance Section/Branch, Internal Revenue Service, Washington DC

Recommendation for Teaching Assistantship, Professor of English, Texas A&M University, College Station, Texas

Letter of Appreciation, Program Analysis Officer, Engineering and Services Center, United States Air Force, Washington DC

Letter of Appreciation, Director of Information Management and Administration, United States Air Force, Washington DC

Letter of Appreciation, Chief, Publishing Division, Directorate of  Information Management & Administration, United States Air Force, Washington DC

Memorandum of Appreciation, Project Officer, Directorate of Program Management and Technology, United States Air Force, Washington DC

Keyworker, Combined Federal Campaign, Air Force Publications, United States Air Force, Washington DC

Parent Volunteer Editor, School Literary Magazine, Gunston Elementary School, Lorton, Virginia

Chairman, Parents Volunteer Library Committee, Broadmoor Elementary School, Baton Rouge, Louisiana


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I live in Cajun Country -- South Louisiana. There, ceiling fans turn slowly, sugar cane grows tall, and music is lively. The state bird is the brown pelican, and the state flower is the Magnolia grandiflora.  Alligators live in the swamps and bayous, but they are miles away. Even so, the wayward golfer occasionally manages to hit a ball through my window.