It’s been a busy summer! I have worked on a number of large projects, including the brochure of the Lebanese pavilion at the Venice Biennale and some developmental edits of PhD-theses, and I’ve also learned some skills involved in digital ethnography by working for MotivIndex, a consumer research company based in Toronto. That was fun and a nice change from the editing work, which I have drowned in this summer (not that that’s a bad thing, but I must say I am glad that I’m finally able to breathe again, even though it’s just a little bit).
After (almost) completing two large developmental editing jobs recently, I have learned that this type of editing is very draining but also very rewarding. It takes so much effort and concentration to put myself in the author’s shoes, understand what story they are trying to tell, and suggest how that message, story, or argument can be conveyed in the clearest, most engaging, and best-structured way. While the effort is considerable, once I see how I can help improve the structure, flow, or argument of the text, I love sharing my insights with the author to see if they agree with me, and making a plan to move forward. There’s nothing better than a happy, satisfied client. Every writer benefits from a fresh pair of eyes for their text, myself included. While it is definitely not the only type of editing that I want to do, I definitely want to keep offering this service.
In other news, I’m excited to say that a book I proofread last Spring for Terreform’s Urban Research, based in New York, is coming out soon, titled “Letters to the Leaders of China: Kongjian Yu and the Future of the Chinese City.” I’m very happy and grateful to have had a chance to work on this book, which provides fascinating insights into China’s urban planning issues and its rapidly evolving urban landscape. I am currently working as a copyeditor for the same publisher on a book titled “Open Gaza” (in forthcoming titles here), which has been incredibly rewarding and really made me memorize the Chicago Manual of Style in greater detail. As someone who can’t get enough of words, commas, and grammar, that has been fun!
I am now planning for the coming autumn, and have decided that I would like to get some formal editing training. I am going start by taking a copyediting course, part of Canada-based Queen’s University’s Professional Studies program. This course is one of the five courses required to obtain the “Professional Editing Standards Certificate,” and I am planning to take them all eventually, so I can get the certificate.
In the meantime, I have the privilege of language editing an interesting translation of an ancient Chinese text (a job that I got via Peerwith) and I am working on several other assignments (including a translation). I will report on my training as soon as I start!