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All-In-One Editor and Proofreader

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Community Guru
Kholleras I Member Since: Nov 24, 2015
1 of 6
How do others in the writing specialties deal with clients who expect a single freelancer to serve as both editor and proofreader? Some employers seem to have no concept of an editing cycle; they send out a document that still contains sentence fragments and expect it to come back 100% perfect and complete after a single revision. Looking at some of their budgets, they probably wouldn't be able or willing to hire two freelancers, so it seems pointless to suggest that. Still, if I simply skipped over these jobs, I'd have zero work opportunities, so I'd like to try to work out their unrealistic expectations in some cases.
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MERCY N Member Since: May 6, 2015
2 of 6

"... clients who expect a single freelancer to serve as both editor and proofreader?" 

 

For one, some clients may take the two terms to be synonymous. For me I don't get into the technicalities of the job. What I assume is that the client wants to receive a well flowing text; coherent in ideas and with no grammatical or structural errors. In short, I assume the highest expectations. And then I figure out what to charge.

 

Of course, in some cases, you get clients who are very conversant with this field, and they even tell you the next phase they will take the book through (serious works are mostly books) after you are done with your part.

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Nichola L Member Since: Mar 13, 2015
3 of 6

I have seen some "proofreading" jobs, that have required freelancers to be a whole publishing house rolled into one. writer, editor, proofreader, typesetter and publicity manager - usually, for some entirely unrealistic fee!

 

Some jobs though, especially for online editing, could be called proofediting, especially for self-published books.  But I always tell a client that although I am happy to correct a formatting style up to a point (indentation, chapter headings  etc.) the actual typesetting and preparing a book in Kindle etc. is another job and needs to be treated as such. I find the dual role of "proofediting", quite taxing enough, as I am rarely given enough turnaround time to double-check my own work. I have rarely had the opportunity (as an online proofreader) to proofread a book after it has been typeset. 

 

 

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Stephen B Member Since: Dec 4, 2012
4 of 6

I'm sure all of us in this field work slightly differently. but I agree with Nichola that a lot of this work can be merged into "proof-editing", and very little of it is actually proofreading in its purest sense (though I do always give that final "proofing"  read or two after the edits). I'd also venture to say that the vast majority of those who ask for proofeading on the basis that "it's already been edited a couple of times so it should be OK" in my experience almost always require editing.

 

So while I can accept, and indeed expect, blurring of lines between proofing and light editing, it gets stretched ever wider in all directions. On the one hand deep substantial and context editing. Then writing/ghost writing. Then the formatting for ebook. And yes, even designing the book cover as well!

 

I think it's up to the freelancer to choose the jobs carefully and set the boundaries at interview. Although I do agree with the OP, that it cuts out a lot of the job opportunities, especially recently. I've just had my worst month here for income since I started three years ago. But I'm not going back to the crap kind of content mill/puppy farm stuff I used to do to get started. Just hanging on in there and hoping for things to settle...

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Jennifer M Member Since: May 17, 2015
5 of 6

Stephen B wrote:

I'm sure all of us in this field work slightly differently. but I agree with Nichola that a lot of this work can be merged into "proof-editing", and very little of it is actually proofreading in its purest sense (though I do always give that final "proofing"  read or two after the edits). I'd also venture to say that the vast majority of those who ask for proofeading on the basis that "it's already been edited a couple of times so it should be OK" in my experience almost always require editing.

 

So while I can accept, and indeed expect, blurring of lines between proofing and light editing, it gets stretched ever wider in all directions. On the one hand deep substantial and context editing. Then writing/ghost writing. Then the formatting for ebook. And yes, even designing the book cover as well!

 

I think it's up to the freelancer to choose the jobs carefully and set the boundaries at interview. Although I do agree with the OP, that it cuts out a lot of the job opportunities, especially recently. I've just had my worst month here for income since I started three years ago. But I'm not going back to the crap kind of content mill/puppy farm stuff I used to do to get started. Just hanging on in there and hoping for things to settle...


aw man necro thread and I miss this guy's humor so much. I even chuckled when he was beating me up when I was a forum noob.

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Active Member
Stephanie P Member Since: Jun 9, 2019
6 of 6

stephaniem here. thank you for your input! i write well, but my proper grammer, spelling, need help! do you know how they, upwork can help me? thanx!!!

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