Editor Kara LaReau has struck out on her own, and has announced the formation of Bluebird Works, offering creative services that include freelance writing and editing, manuscript reviewing and talent scouting to publishers, authors and agents. LaReau had been an executive editor at Scholastic, where she worked with authors that included Rosemary Wells, Cecil Castellucci and Alexander Stadler, before being laid off in November. “I predated Black Wednesday by like a month, so I continue to be a trendsetter,” she says. (Prior to Scholastic, LaReau was at Candlewick Press, where she edited Kate DiCamillo’s The Tale of Despereaux, among other titles.)

Unsure about returning to the traditional world, LaReau made a list of things she enjoyed—which included writing, editing and nurturing new talent—and decided, “Well, that could be a job! Why can’t I do exactly what makes me happy?” And Bluebird Works, calling to mind the “bluebird of happiness,” was born.

LaReau will operate Bluebird Works out of her home in Providence, R.I., which she sees as an advantage. “I’m right in the middle of the publishing world, right between Boston and New York.” In addition to information about her services (and a lengthy list of recommendations), the Bluebird Works Web site includes a link to LaReau’s new blog, which she says “gives me an opportunity to speak to all sorts of issues editorially, and as an author,” as well as “things that come up in my everyday working and personal life.”