One trick I've seen mentioned several times is to replace up to about 3/4 of the water with vodka (probably any booze will work, but vodka generally doesn't have much flavor). This makes the dough more forgiving as the vodka doesn't interact with the flour the way water does, so you can work it more if you need to without it getting impossibly tough.
When you go to bake the pie, cover the edge with a strip of aluminum foil. This keeps the edge from getting too brown or scorching. Lightly brushing an egg wash over the top crust when the pie has 20 minutes or so left gives it a pretty, shiny finish.