All posts by Catherine Hensley

About Catherine Hensley

Catherine L. Hensley is a professional freelance editor and writer. (Her website is From fiction and nonfiction manuscripts to academic pieces, she provides an extensive range of copyediting, proofreading, content editing, and writing services to a wide variety of clients located around the United States and abroad. A native of south Louisiana, Catherine received her Master of Arts degree in creative writing and media studies from New York University and her Bachelor of Arts degree in English from Louisiana State University in Baton Rouge, with minors in history and mass communication. Her writing has appeared the Advocate (Louisiana’s largest newspaper), OT Practice magazine, Quiet Mountain: New Feminist Essays, and Mused, the BellaOnline Literary Review. She is thrilled to be sharing her first novel, New York Dolls, through its publication by 48Fourteen.

“New York Dolls” Book Club Questions

    New York City could be viewed as a character in the novel. In what ways does “the city that never sleeps” influence Denton’s story?   It’s your first big assignment for Glitter magazine, and at the venue, Amber Donovan stumbles out of a bathroom stall right in front of you. What do you do?   Denton and Josie commiserate about life, love, and all things gossip at Mamie’s. How does the bakeshop impact Denton’s perception of life in the city and the events surrounding the fashion show?   How would you answer MD’s signature question, “Who is you?”   Denton and Chris West enjoy a grilled cheese sandwich […]

The Dividends of Solid Editing

    Edit, edit, edit. Then edit some more. As an editor, I know the value of giving a second, third, or even fourth look to a piece of writing. After my debut novel, New York Dolls, was selected for publication by 48fourteen Publishing, I learned even more how valuable the editorial process is. The book went through more than four rounds of editing and revisions, and even by the third round, errors in continuity were still being spotted. Beyond the typos and grammatical errors and jumbles of syntax, tricky issues like a character wearing a black sweater on one page and a gray one a few pages later kept […]

8 Fun Facts About New York Dolls by Catherine L. Hensley

While there’s no actual Mamie’s Bake Shop in New York City, a number of Manhattan bakeries, like Magnolia and Buttercup Bake Shop, served as inspiration for Denton and Josie’s favorite hang-out spot.   New York Dolls wasn’t the original title.  I gave an early draft the very unoriginal moniker, One Starry Night.   My main character’s name, Denton Hodges, was inspired by my grandmother’s maiden name (Denton).  Her family lived in the Denton, Texas, area.   The novel went through more than four rounds of edits and revisions, getting it into tip-top shape for publication.   While living in New York, I interned at US Weekly magazine.   In addition to the paperback version, New […]

Sample Chapters from New York Dolls by Catherine L. Hensley

With the release of my novel, New York Dolls, from 48fourteen Publishing, I’m pleased to share the first two chapters here on the 48fourteen blog. Enjoy! ***** CHAPTER 1 2008 “The show’s at fifty-seventh and seventh. Here’s your press badge and mini mic. If you see anyone, just be casual, make chit-chat, see what they think of the show. We’ve heard Amber Donovan may be there, but nothing’s confirmed. Just try to blend in, have some drinks. It starts at five thirty. Oh, and remember…you’re Anna Creel.” Right. My first assignment! I never thought it would involve false aliases and conversational spying for Glitter magazine, but…my first assignment! At New […]

New York State of Mind

As you can tell from the title, the city of New York plays a big role in my first novel, New York Dolls (out from 48fourteen Publishing the week of Nov. 17, 2014). I’ve been immersed in doing the last round of edits for the novel while also unexpectedly reacquainting myself with nonstop reruns of Sex and the City. (Any day now, I’m guessing E! will re-brand as the Carrie Bradshaw Network.) So I’ve got NYC on the brain. In New York Dolls, my main character, Denton Hodges, is a Southern transplant to New York City. She arrived on the island of Manhattan armed with big dreams and a whole […]

Writing… One Letter at a Time

“Writing is 90 percent procrastination: reading magazines, eating cereal out of the box, watching infomercials.” — Paul Rudnick I’d also add taking aimless walks, online shopping, and playing Kim Kardashian: Hollywood to Mr. Rudnick’s spot-on list. His assessment of the craft that is writing really struck a chord with me when I stumbled upon it. And, ok, made me feel a little less guilty for everything I do to escape actually writing. I’m the first one to admit that I’m in no way, shape, or form a prolific writer. In fact, I’ll have to throw in some adjectives here to properly qualify myself. I’m an avoidant writer. Slow. Sluggish. Snail’s […]