I am an Institute of Professional Editors (IPEd) accredited editor specialising in academic documents (journal articles, theses, books and book chapters, grant proposals, etc.). I also have experience with editing creative writing (short stories, novels), and web copy (blogs, web pages).
Q. How do you check the document?
A. Usually, you send through a Word document so that I can use Track Changes to offer suggestions, changes, corrections and comments, but I can work with other mediums if necessary. It’s then your responsibility to either accept or reject those changes and produce a clean document. It’s a good idea for a copy editor to check the document twice – once to copy edit (looking at punctuation, grammar, style and expression), and then again to proofread (checking your corrections, looking for any remaining minor errors, typos). But in real life, people don’t often have the time or budget to run this second check. Therefore, please ensure you put plenty of time aside to go through all changes very carefully, and ask for clarification if you need it.
Q. What sort of things do you check?
A. During both copy editing and proofreading I use resources such as the Macquarie Dictionary and the AGPS Style Manual to make all decisions – that means, for example, how to present numbers and dates, whether to use sentence or title case, or how to format bullet lists. If you’re working to a specific style guide (for example, when submitting to a particular journal), I would copy edit your work to those specifications.
Q. How long does it take?
A. Every text is different and everyone’s writing ability is different, therefore I can give you a broad guestimate, but I’ll be able to give you a better idea once I’ve seen a sample of your work. As a very rough guide, an 8,000 word journal article might take 2 to 4 hours, and a 80,000 word thesis could take anything from 20 to 30 hours for a copy edit only, depending on your requirements. It’s best to book well in advance – up to 2 to 3 months ahead for a thesis, and possibly 1 to 3 weeks for a journal article.
Q. Will you check referencing?
A. Immaculate referencing in academic documents is critical. I can check that your in-text citations match your reference list and vice versa, and I can also format your list to a particular style (for example Harvard or APA). This task is quite a fiddly and time consuming one though, and is not included in the time estimates provided above.
Q. How much notice do you need?
A. The longer the lead time the better (see note above), but I can occasionally accommodate short and urgent deadlines.
Q. What sort of documents can you check?
A. The short answer is any sort of document at all. I’ve copy edited book chapters, books, peer-reviewed journal articles, conference papers, conference proceedings, technical reports, honours and PhD theses, short stories, novels, newspaper articles and everything in between. If it’s in print (and in English!), I can check it.
Q. What do you need to know to provide a quote?
A. It will depend on the document type, but generally I’ll need to know the word count and due date to start with. If it’s an academic document, I’ll need to know if you need me to check referencing too, and whether you’re working to a specific style guide or manuscript requirements. To provide the best estimate on how long the document might take me, it’s best if you can provide a sample from the document. That will help me judge the extent of copy editing required. All documents are treated with absolute discretion and confidentiality, whether you decide to go ahead or not.
Q. Do we need to meet in person? What if I live overseas or interstate?
A. I am based in Adelaide, South Australia. If you’re local, I’m more than happy to meet up for a chat. But I have edited documents for clients from across the globe, including Kosovo, Italy, Germany, Mauritius, USA, Indonesia, Hong Kong and several other countries. Many of these clients I have never had the good fortune to meet in person, but we’ve developed trust and rapport via email, Zoom and WhatsApp chats.
Q. What are your fees?
A. I think it’s fair to only bill you for the time it takes to complete your work, so I charge an hourly rate instead of a per document or per word rate. I’m happy to negotiate rates for concession card holders, especially PhD and Masters candidates. When you’re completely happy with your document, I send you an invoice for that amount (with a 14 day term) which you can pay via Pay Pal or Electronic Funds Transfer. Credit card payment may also be possible. Please get in touch to get an accurate and individual quote.