Category Archives: Events

What’s on near you? Information about the many SfEP events, local group meets and training courses.

Collaborate and innovate

Every year, the SfEP conference has a theme – a title intended to give a flavour of the programme that delegates can look forward to, and perhaps even capture something of the editorial zeitgeist.

It may not be iSfEPSIswirlmmediately obvious how freelance editorial professionals collaborate. We are often seen as a disparate collection of solitary workers, tapping away in front of our screens with only the cat or dog for company … ‘collaboration’ might not be the first word that comes to mind. But no editor is an island: we choose to form networks of friendly colleagues, both informally and through more structured local group meetings; we belong to professional associations such as the SfEP; we interact online, in forums and via social media. And when it comes to our work, even if we meet clients and colleagues relatively rarely, we are usually an intrinsic part of a much larger team of individuals with different areas of expertise bringing each project to fruition together.

In this spirit of collaboration, 2015 marks the first joint conference of the Society for Editors and Proofreaders and the Society of Indexers. We are two societies with much in common, and indeed some membership overlap. Our members are all concerned with organising text. However, perhaps it will turn out to be the differences between the work we do as editors and indexers that prove most interesting. It’ll be fun finding out!

Christine Vaughan, the SfEP’s conference director, and Ann Kingdom, the SI chair, had this to say about what collaboration means in the context of the 2015 conference programme:

This year’s conference programme offers a number of opportunities to reflect on your collaboration with others, from understanding how indexing fits into the editorial process to exploring how to build your client base and maintain good client relationships. For example, in ‘Both sides of the self-publishing coin’, Clare Christian and Hattie Holden Edmonds will explore, amongst other things, the idea of ‘collaboration not competition’ as a means of enabling the independent author to find the right people to work with.

Sessions looking at the technological changes affecting journal publishing, how the production process can be adapted to take into new working practices and product formats, and how the roles of the editor and indexer are likely to develop in the future will, we hope, mean you leave the conference enthused and informed about the future of publishing. Or you could come away inspired to diversify on a more personal level, by getting to grips with social media marketing, becoming an SfEP mentor or using digital tools to streamline your working practice.

 But in with the new needn’t mean out with the old – we have several sessions on perennial topics, such as ‘Finance for freelances’ and a workshop on Word, while Paul Johnson will give a presentation on ‘The magic of the movable book’, proving that you can still make something new and different from paper.

Meanwhile innovation – introducing something new; making changes or alterations – comes from a base of solid knowledge and depends on an environment in which new ideas can germinate and grow. The conference represents a CPD injection of the kind that is simply not available to us for the rest of the year, with the chance to listen to a range of expert speakers, and take part in different workshops and seminars each day, as well as other activities and events such as the gala dinner. Past delegates have testified to the intense learning experience that takes place over the course of two and a half days:

What I didn’t perhaps expect was the openness and warmth which greeted me … continuing right the way through the conference. I learned a lot from the seminars and workshops, but so much more from my new colleagues, who were without fail willing to share their experience and make suggestions that I might like to follow up to boost my business.

Think of it as worth several days of training courses, useful tips galore, a confidence boost, dozens of useful contacts and probably several new firm friends.

The conference is also an unmatched opportunity simply to talk to colleagues. New entrants to the profession can pick the brains of veterans, and the other way round. Although we are in competition for work, in so many ways building relationships with other professionals can make us stronger and improve our chances of staying the course.

Recent conference themes have looked at the idea of change, and response to that change: A new publishing landscape (2013); Editing: fit for purpose (2014). All industries change over time, and ours is no different. We’ve seen a huge rise in self-publishing, a sector rich with opportunities for editors keen to work closely with independent authors; open access has altered the landscape of journal publishing; our clients continue to ask us to grapple with new software, mark-up languages and workflow tools; the outsourcing and offshoring of a range of editorial tasks continues to shape the market. Perhaps how we respond to these changes, and others, is one of the most important factors in determining our success and professional longevity.

So if last year’s conference was about responding to the contemporary climate, this year’s is about looking forward, and effectively stealing the march on what may come to challenge us professionally. In a marketplace in which we may feel at the mercy of time pressures, economic forces and client demands, it is empowering to consider how we can take back control and help our businesses thrive.

We look forward to seeing you there!

The 2015 SI/SfEP conference, Collaborate and innovate, takes place from 5–7 September at Derwent College in York.

For more information, and to book, see the SfEP website.

Posted by Liz Jones, SfEP marketing and PR director.

Proofread by SfEP entry-level member Karen Pickavance.

Experiences of the London Book Fair

London Book Fair logoTwo SfEP members have reported back on their experiences of the recent London Book Fair. They share how useful they found the day personally, along with some observations on the wider publishing industry.

 

Jane Hammett’s LBF experience

Last week I went to the London Book Fair for the first time. It had 1,500 exhibitors, split into various sections – trade, children’s publishing, and so on. The day I went, there were 70 seminars to attend on subjects covering all aspects of publishing. If you’re not careful, it’s easy to wander around for the day with your mouth open, amazed at all the publishers and areas of publishing you were never aware of, but not actually doing anything constructive, so here are some handy tips if you’re thinking about attending next year.

To get something worthwhile out of the day, you need to have a plan. Write down a list of things you’d like to achieve. My list included:

  1. Meet people for coffee and chat – I had arranged to meet a fellow SfEP member I had corresponded with but never met; a member of the Bedfordshire local group; an author whose book I had edited; and another editor friend.
  2. Look for, and approach, some potential publishers that I’d like to work for, and hand out business cards. (Note: you may need to practise your opening marketing chat first – in case, like me, selling yourself is not your best skill.)
  3. Attend some interesting seminars, either directly relating to my areas of work or to something completely new.

Objective 1: easily achieved. Tick!

Objective 2: less easily achieved. A lot of the publishers were there to discuss rights and new book deals, not editorial matters. I found it was better to approach smaller publishers, who I found were much more interested in me and the skills I had to offer.

Objective 3: done! I attended the session held in the English PEN Literary Salon between author Ali Smith and Claire Armitstead, book reviewer for the Guardian and the Observer. Ali Smith is the author of Artful, There but for the, Free Love, Like, Hotel World, Other and her most recent book, which was her main topic of conversation, How to be both.

It was fascinating to get an insight into the mind of a successful writer who really knows her craft. She was bright, witty and amusing. During the open question session after her talk, one audience member asked her: ‘Do you have any advice for writers who want to get published?’ Ali’s advice was to keep writing; never get disheartened but write as much as you can; keep redrafting your book and honing your skills. Also, read, read, read as much as you can: the sides of buses, as many genres of books as possible, cornflake packets. It was good to see her giving the same advice that I often give my self-publishing authors!

After this, I met an author whose YA novel I recently edited. She went to the book fair looking for tips on social media and how to market her book, as well as ways to find an agent and get published, and she found several of the seminars held in the Author HQ really useful. I found it interesting – and valuable – being able to follow the story of how she published her book after I had finished working on it.

Finally, one of my main reasons for attending was to sit in on a seminar chaired by Dr Alison Baverstock, Associate Professor of Publishing at Kingston University, titled ‘Why editors are invisible no longer’.

What I found remarkable was that, out of about two hundred seminars, only one was directly aimed at editors. Surely editors should play a more important – and visible – role in the industry?

Alongside Dr Baverstock, there were three other speakers: Wendy Toole, freelance editor and former chair of SfEP; Richard Duguid, senior editorial manager of Penguin Random House; and Helen Hart, publishing director of SilverWood Books, a company that ‘supports self-funding writers and helps them produce high quality professionally-designed books and ebooks’.

The talk concentrated on research Dr Baverstock carried out during 2013, into the ‘role, motivation and work pattern of independent editors’. Her results can be found in Learned Publishing (Volume 28, Number 1, January 2015, pp. 43–53).

The talk centred on editors’ lifestyles and work, and how these are changing with the recent huge increase in self-publishing authors. Editors’ answers revealed that many had shifted from working for traditional publishers to working for new types of clients, including self-publishing authors. Many editors felt that their relationships with traditional publishers were becoming increasingly strained and less satisfying – for a variety of reasons – and more editors claimed to receive higher satisfaction from working with self-publishers (especially experienced ones) rather than conventional publishers. A lot of Baverstock’s points resonated with me – and the editors I was with!

The sheer scale of the book fair and the enormous variety in the publishing and technology on offer made me think about my role as an editor and proofreader in the (much) wider world of publishing, and helped me to feel a renewed commitment to my work – and why I do it. It can be hard to remember the bigger picture when you spend most days at home working on your computer!

Would I go next year? I think I would – armed with a better idea of what to say to publishers to break the ice, and definitely again arranging some meetings – with editors, friends or authors – in advance.

jane hammett sfep blog figJane Hammett is an advanced professional member of the SfEP and has been freelance since 1998. She is also the local group coordinator for the SfEP Bedfordshire group. Jane specialises in fiction (for adults and children) and educational publishing. Visit her website for more information.

 

 

Charlotte Norman’s LBF experience

Undecided whether to visit the LBF this year, I was finally prompted to attend by an invitation to a publishing launch. I put together an agenda on the handy new LBF app and left home at 6am last Wednesday to be there for the first item on my list. The report on YALC 2014 turned out to be a huge draw, and I was lucky to have a seat (and a much-needed cup of coffee) by 9.50. The brainchild of Waterstones Children’s Laureate, Malorie Blackman, last year’s Young Adult Literature Convention was the inaugural major book event aimed specifically at teenagers and young adults, and was by any standards a roaring success. It quickly became evident that face-to-face meetings with authors still hold a special magic, even for young people living in a digital age. Hot Key generated a tremendous buzz around a US title whose author couldn’t attend (the wonderful and compelling We Were Liars by E. Lockhart) by making rubber stamps of mottoes from the book and stamping the backs of hands. In fact, it seems all manner of ‘stuff’ was greeted enthusiastically by this fandom-loving age group. We heard stories of success and lessons learned, and were given an array of impressive statistics, such as that 37% of those attending had never previously been to a book event of any kind and that 75% bought books while there (figures from memory).

For me, Ali Smith’s lunchtime interview with Claire Armitstead was worth the ticket price on its own. Discussing everything from surprises in fiction and the 3D nature of a novel to what inspired her to write her latest work (her tax demand), the award-winning author of How to be both was articulate and witty. She also explained how her publisher contrived to meet her need for a single print-run – with only one ISBN – of which half the books would read in one sequence and half the other way around: stop the printing process halfway through and swap the pages around!

The afternoon gave me an opportunity to socialise with editorial colleagues and pass some time watching the goings-on all around. I don’t like giving out business cards at the fair but prefer to visit publishers’ stands and look for lists and trends that conform with my work preferences, with a view to following up with phone calls or emails later.

Like Jane (Hammett), I was keen to attend Wendy Toole’s seminar, though having heard both Alison Baverstock and Helen Hart speak recently at the Bath Literature Festival, I thought there might be a lot of overlap. I needn’t have worried and the discussion, with input from Wendy Toole and Richard Duguid, was interesting. It seems clear that the number of in-house editors is diminishing and the financial pressures felt by publishers are increasingly being passed on to freelances. Dr Baverstock, the only academic currently studying the self-publishing industry, presented a number of encouraging findings, however, for editors and proofreaders who work with self-funded authors. The one that stayed with me is that 50% of self-published authors are in full-time work and are often willing to pay a fair rate for editorial services.

Whenever I attend the London Book Fair I am impressed by the attention to detail in the planning and organisation. The stewards are always helpful and the app was great for planning and quick searches, though I found the paper map essential for locating events. The Olympia venue was pleasingly airy and the galleries provided a great view of the hustle and bustle and book deals taking place, though I understand that there were rumblings of discontent from publishers whose first-floor stands missed out on valuable through-traffic. It was not as straightforward getting home from Olympia as from Earl’s Court (to a non-Londoner), but after the publisher’s launch and drinks party, where I handed over the only business card I had planned to, I was happy to totter off in the general direction of the Tube.

Charlotte Norman is a professional member of the SfEP. She has been a freelance proofreader since 2011 and has recently completed the PTC distance learning course in copy-editing. Her work has included translation and copywriting for the luxury goods sector, but she is happiest proofreading young adult fiction.

Proofread by SfEP entry-level member Karen Pickavance.

The views expressed here do not necessarily reflect those of the SfEP.

26 reasons to go to the 26th SfEP conference

If you still need convincing to go to this year’s SfEP/SI conference (with the theme ‘Collaborate and Innovate’), here are 26 reasons to book your place right now.

  1. Quite simply, it’s the SfEP’s biggest professional and social event of the year.
  2. It’s the first-ever joint conference to be held with the Society of Indexers, which means new faces and more networking opportunities.
  3. It’s taking place in the tranquil surroundings of Derwent College at the University of York.

    Derwent college

    Derwent College, University of York

  4. If you’d like to see more of this beautiful and historic city, you can take a pre-conference literary tour of York. (Requires separate booking.)
  5. Attending the conference is an unrivalled CPD opportunity. There are over 30 sessions to choose from, covering a diverse range of subjects and interests, from editing academic journals to understanding the self-publishing process, and from the ethics of proofreading dissertations and theses to financial planning and honing your presentation skills.
  6. You can attend one of the pre-conference workshops on Cindex, Macrex, PerfectIt or Edifix. (Requires separate booking.)
  7. The AGM, at the start of the conference, is a valuable chance to find out more about how the Society is run, and have your say.
  8. There is a range of international speakers booked, from the US, Canada, the Netherlands and Australia as well as all over the UK.
  9. You’ll meet up with old friends, or people you’ve only met previously online – or make completely new acquaintances.
  10. For freelancers, it’s a great time to network with colleagues and potential clients; for corporate subscribers, it’s a chance to find freelance talent.
  11. There’s the chance to get dressed up (if you like) at the Gala Dinner. When else do freelancers get to wear posh frocks and suits?
  12. For that matter, for some of us it might be a chance simply to get dressed, if our popular image is to be believed …
  13. David Crystal (honorary vice-president of the SfEP) is giving the after-dinner speech, which is sure to be a treat.
  14. You don’t have to do the cooking or washing up for a few days!
  15. Experience the joy of finding yourself in the company of so many other people who understand the importance (and use) of the semicolon. This is truly a rare thing.
  16. Expect a fascinating Whitcombe Lecture from John Thompson (a founder of Polity Press, Professor of Sociology at the University of Cambridge and author), who will consider how the publishing industry is adapting to change.
  17. Earn points towards upgrading your membership of the SfEP.
  18. If you’re a first-timer, take the chance to grill meet the current SfEP council over drinks on the first night.
  19. Breakout events such as the Tweetup and the exhibitors’ fair provide a range of things to do between sessions.
  20. On the last afternoon, attend the ‘Crystal ball’ panel session, and put your questions to six publishing experts: Alison Baverstock, Allyson Latta, Sam Leith, Peter McKay, Kate Mertes and Lynn West.
  21. The closing lecture, by Eben Muse (Researcher in Digital Media at Bangor University), promises an intriguing look at how readers are adapting to change, and the future of reading itself.
  22. Make the most of your time away and attend the SfEP’s pre-conference course, Introduction to fiction editing. (Requires separate booking.)
  23. As well as your fellow editors, you can meet the lovely staff from our offices in Putney, who keep the SfEP running smoothly all year round.
  24. Try your luck in the raffle, with a range of fantastic prizes on offer, including a handmade book by session leader Paul Johnson.
  25. Be amazed at how revived and enthused you feel after a few days away from your desk. There’s nothing like it for rekindling your love of editing!
  26. Finally, there’s still time to make the most of the early-bird discount if you book now – until Friday 24 April.

We hope to see you there!

Liz Jones SfEP marketing and PR director

 

Liz Jones is the SfEP’s PR and marketing director.

 

 

Six reasons to go to the London Book Fair

London Book Fair logoYou could argue that the London Book Fair (like other international book fairs) is not aimed at freelance editors or proofreaders, and therefore it might seem a waste to take valuable time out of a busy schedule to attend. But here are some really good reasons to give it a go.

  1. If you’re interested in books (and of course not all editorial professionals these days are), it is one of the events on the global publishing calendar. OK, so perhaps you won’t personally be brokering any six-figure deals, but there’s something to be said for at least being in the building while it all goes on. And if you want to be really meta about the whole thing, you can follow it on Twitter while you’re there.
  2. It’s a good opportunity to get in touch with your publishing contacts, see if they’re going to the fair, and arrange to meet. Although most of our business tends to be conducted electronically, there’s nothing like putting a face to a name for cementing a working relationship – and having a few appointments lined up will help to give structure to your day.
  3. As well as potential clients, the book fair can be an opportunity to get together with friends and colleagues. Find some other freelancers to travel with, or meet for coffee. The fair can also seem less daunting if you have someone to walk round with.
  4. Don’t be put off by the fact that much of the business of the fair is about selling rights. It’s also a fantastic opportunity to see the direction different publishers are taking, by looking at their stands. As a freelance, you will be fairly free to nose around, though some areas of the stands will be reserved for meetings. (However, if your badge makes it clear you are affiliated with a particular company, you may get a frosty reception at competitors’ stands)
  5. There are lots of seminars and other scheduled events at the fair, details of which you can find in advance on the website. You won’t be able to see everything, but it’s worth finding a few things to attend that particularly interest you. They’re included in the entry price – and who knows what you’ll find out?
  6. If you are brave, you may be able to make new contacts, which could lead to new work streams. This approach isn’t for everyone, but if you feel up to trying it, go for it! Don’t feel bad if you’re not comfortable doing this, though. There’s plenty more to the book fair.

If you do decide to take the plunge and go this year, here are some tips to help you get the most out of the day:

  • Don’t try to see everything – there’s simply too much, especially if you’re only going for a day, and some stands and seminars will be more interesting to you than others. It’s worth spending time identifying what you’d most like to see before you dive in.
  • Wear comfortable shoes. The book fair covers a huge area, and you’ll be doing a lot of walking. For the same reason, try to carry as little as possible. Do you really need that laptop? If not, leave it behind.
  • If you’re planning to meet someone, make sure you take their mobile number with you, as it’s easy to miss people or get waylaid (or lost) once inside. Also, try to make sure you have some idea what they look like.
  • Don’t forget that professional and advanced professional SfEP members can get a discounted ticket to the London Book Fair.
  • Finally, make sure you have plenty of business cards … and enjoy the experience!

The 2015 London Book Fair takes place at Olympia London, April 14–16.

If you enjoy going to book fairs, what do you get out of the experience?

Liz Jones SfEP marketing and PR directorLiz Jones is the Society for Editors and Proofreaders’ marketing and PR director.

 

Proofread by SfEP entry-level member Susan Walton.

Tweet about #sfep14 to win a copy of Twitterature

Twitterature

To celebrate our 25th annual Society for Editors and Proofreaders (SfEP) conference, we’re launching a Twitter competition.

All you have to do is follow @theSfEP on Twitter and tweet during the conference using the hashtag #sfep14. Entries received between 13 September and 3 p.m. on 15 September 2014 will be entered into a draw to win a copy of the paperback book Twitterature. The winner will be announced during the closing session of this year’s conference.

Conference Tweetup

The conference is also the perfect time to meet up with other SfEP tweeters at our first ever SfEP Tweetup, which takes place between 5.35 p.m. and 6.15 p.m. on Sunday 14 September. You’ll be able to put faces to handles and share tips and stories. There’s no agenda, just an informal get together.

Twitter Workshop

If you’re new to Twitter, you can learn all about how it works at Julia Sandford-Cooke’s ‘Twitter for Beginners’ workshop at 4 p.m. on Sunday 14 September. Perhaps she’ll whet your appetite enough to encourage you to head to the Tweetup afterwards. For more tips from Julia, check out the post she wrote for the SfEP blog: Five reasons editors love Twitter.

If you’re not sure what to tweet or how to use the #sfep14 hashtag, take a look at what people tweeted at last year’s conference in this Storify collection of #sfep13.

Wifi will be available throughout the conference venue and wifi and wired access is available in the conference accommodation.

Full terms and conditions of the Twitter competition can be viewed on the SfEP website.

Joanna Bowery

Joanna Bowery is the SfEP social media manager. As well as looking after the SfEP’s Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn accounts and the SfEP blog, she offers freelance marketing, PR, writing and proofreading services operating as Cosmic Frog. Jo is an associate of the SfEP and a Chartered Marketer. She is active on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Google+.

Proofread by SfEP associate Ravinder Dhindsa.

The views expressed here do not necessarily reflect those of the SfEP.

 

Meet the SfEP conference sponsors

London Royal Holloway - the venue for the 25th SfEP annual conference 13-15 September 2014

London Royal Holloway – the venue for the 25th SfEP annual conference

So, you’re off to the SfEP conference. You’ve booked your workshops, you’re finalising your travel arrangements and you’re wondering what to wear to the Gala dinner. But have you thought about how to make the most of our exhibition?

Whether you want to find out more about software that will streamline your operations, you’re looking for a training course, or you’re looking at ways to reduce your stress levels, you’ll find something of interest among our conference exhibitors.

Here, we give you the lowdown on our conference sponsors, including their profiles, so you can decide which ones to visit at the exhibitors’ fair and prepare any questions when you visit the stands.

Sponsors

The Publishing Training Centre and The Publishing Qualifications Board

Whether you’re just starting your career in proofreading or editing, or you are looking at further developing your skill set, The Publishing Training Centre (PTC) is definitely worth a visit. The PTC is sponsoring the Whitcombe Lecture.

The Publishing Training Centre and The Publishing Qualifications Board profile:

‘The Publishing Training Centre (PTC) supports organisations and individuals that utilise publishing skills as a critical part of their operations by delivering classroom based and distance learning courses. The distance learning courses are provided under the auspices of The Publishing Qualifications Board that was established in 1991 as the awarding body for the vocational qualifications of the publishing industry. Later this year The Publishing Qualifications Board is being re-born as the PQB. In addition to accrediting the distance learning courses, PQB will provide a comprehensive Continuing Professional Development framework for publishing professionals.’

Inera Inc.

Ensuring references are correctly formatted can be a thankless task. However, Inera Inc. could come to the rescue with their tools, which automatically correct, link and format references. Inera – Innovation for Today, Resources for Tomorrow – is the firm that created eXtyles® and Edifix®. Inera is sponsoring Anne Waddingham’s ‘Working with Word’s styles’ workshop.

Inera profile:

‘Inera is a leading developer of sophisticated editorial and production solutions for the publishing world. Our eXtyles® suite of editorial and XML solutions are used in the production of journals, books, standards, and government documents in more than twenty-five countries. What sets us apart are the unique features and unparalleled quality of our products and services, and the relationships we build with our customers.

Manual curation of references is costly, time consuming, tedious, and error prone. Edifix® automatically edits plain-text references to popular editorial styles such as AMA, APA 5, APA 6, Chicago, ICMJE (Vancouver), ISO 690, and MLA. References are also linked to PubMed and CrossRef and corrected with data retrieved from these online resources. Results can be pasted into Word, saved to JATS XML, or converted to RIS for seamless integration with popular reference managers. Edifix® is built with proven eXtyles® reference processing technology, used by the leading scientific publishers worldwide, and is available by flexibly priced subscription, making it affordable for everyone, from individual users to large enterprises.’

Intelligent Editing – PerfectIt

If you’re looking for software that will pick up inconsistencies in documents, Intelligent Editing’s PerfectIt is worth a look. We mentioned it in our blog post on Computer Tools for Proofreaders. PerfectIt is sponsoring the exhibitors’ fair.

Intelligent Editing – PerfectIt profile:

‘PerfectIt saves time and helps editors deliver better documents. More than 250 members of the SfEP use PerfectIt to find difficult to locate mistakes. In seconds, PerfectIt can find inconsistent hyphenation, acronyms that haven’t been defined, list punctuation errors, capitalisation inconsistencies, and much more. PerfectIt is designed for professionals and is easy to download, install and use. A free trial is available from: www.intelligentediting.com.’

Exhibitors

BioExact

If you specialise in the life sciences or if you know an author or publisher involved in biological or medical sciences, then BioExact is definitely worth a visit. The firm specialises in editing manuscripts and also offers an editing service for abstracts and press releases for publications or conferences.

BioExact profile:

‘BioExact is a UK-based, online service that specialises in editing manuscripts for life science publications. Abstracts and press releases for publications or conferences, are currently edited free of charge. Authors and publishers are welcome to call (0844 800 4044) for an informal discussion about their editing needs. Visit bioexact.co.uk for further information about services and prices.’

Mariette Jansen / Dr De-Stress

Feeling stressed? Do you get anxious? Are deadlines getting you down? Is your life getting out of control? Visit Mariette Jansen, also known as Dr De-Stress for information on how to regain control of your life.

Mariette Jansen / Dr De-Stress profile:

‘Dr Mariette Jansen (aka Dr De-Stress) is an expert in helping people with stress related challenges. Using her knowledge and experience as a psychotherapist, tutor in counselling education and author about mindfulness meditation, she has created a range of tools that help clients to take charge of their stress levels. Stress is caused by the (perceived) lack of control and by understanding the dynamics of stress and learning tools to deal differently with it, people can change their lives around. Dr Jansen has been awarded for her stress management technique by Janey Lee Grace (radio and TV presenter, author and founder of www.imperfectlynatural.com), has written a series of articles for ‘the Guardian’, is a published author and offers personal coaching, tuition, and workshops.’

EM Words – Elizabeth Manning Murphy DE

We all love books, so you’ll definitely want to take a look at editor, writer, mentor and trainer Elizabeth Manning Murphy DE. She will be selling her study guide, Effective writing: plain English at work and her book about editing and writing, Working Words, which, among other things, tackles the well-known curse of editors and authors: ‘itchypencilitis’.

EM Words profile:

‘Elizabeth Manning Murphy is a distinguished Editor (IPEd, Australia), an Honorary Life Member of the Canberra Society of Editors, and has an Honours degree in Linguistics. She has been editing, writing, training and mentoring in Australia and internationally for more than 40 years. She specialises in academic editing – theses and scholarly journal articles, with a special interest in helping authors whose native language is not English.

Elizabeth is an acclaimed author of many books about editing, writing and business, most recently a second edition of her popular study guide ‘Effective writing: plain English at work’ and ‘Working Words’, a collection of ‘chats’ about editing and writing. Her training focuses on English grammar and plain English as a basis from which to build a good relationship between editor and client. She is an experienced teacher, mentor and speaker to large and small groups.’

John Linnegar

Many of us work with authors from around the world, so a book that reflects international best practice is of real value. Especially when it includes details of a systematic approach to efficiently tackle texts. John Linnegar will be selling Text Editing: A handbook for students and practitioners in the exhibitors’ fair.

John Linnegar profile:

‘Co-author with professors WAM Carstens (North-West University, South Africa) and Kris Van de Poel (Antwerp University, Belgium), John Linnegar was largely responsible for translating and adapting the published source text into ‘Text Editing: A handbook for students and practitioners’ (UPA, Brussels, 2012). This publication is expressly intended for an international audience of language practitioners and has been favourably reviewed and well received in Western Europe, Australia, South Africa, and also in the UK. Unlike similar publications aimed at text editors and associated language practitioners, ‘Text Editing’ reflects international best practice in the most accessible and practical of ways. 

A core feature of the book and its approach is the so-called ‘CCC Model’, the 15 evaluation points of which – covering important facets of documents such as text type, content, structure, wording and presentation – provide the most systematic approach to analysing, evaluating and improving texts yet published. The list of resources available to practitioners is one of the most comprehensive yet published. Copies can be obtained during the SfEP annual conference. Alternatively, they can be ordered either directly from Antwerp-based John Linnegar (info@editandtrain.com) or via the University Press Antwerp website (www.aspeditions.be).’

Oxford University Press – Oxford Language Editing

Do you specialise in academic editing? If so, you’ll definitely want to visit the Oxford University Press stand and find out more about its new Oxford Language Editing service.

Oxford University Press – Oxford Language Editing profile:

‘Oxford Language Editing is a new service from Oxford University Press for academic researchers around the world, helping ensure that academic writing is published in the highest-quality English, giving ideas the best chance of making an impact. The service draws on OUP’s extensive English language knowledge through its publishing of the Oxford English Dictionary, over 300 leading academic journals, and award-winning books in a wide number of subjects. We offer English language editing and abstract editing services in a variety of disciplines.’

Reedsy

Interest in self-publishing continues to grow, so anyone working with authors who are self-publishing might want to investigate Reedsy, which operates as a marketplace where self-publishing authors can find all the experts they need to launch their book.

Reedsy profile:

‘Reedsy is a curated marketplace for self-publishing authors. We allow them to find vetted, industry-experienced editors, cover designers, publicists and translators, compare their profiles, request quotes and samples, and ultimately work together. But Reedsy is more than just a marketplace. We provide innovative collaboration tools to keep the workflow on one platform, both for the authors and for the freelancers. Think of it as a project management tool. We have also developed a new writing software optimised for author-editor collaboration, with an inbuilt track changes system, and simplified conversion to the electronic formats. In a word, Reedsy can make authors’ and editors’ lives much easier.’

The SfEP is extremely grateful to all our conference sponsors and we hope this guide helps you make the most of the exhibitors’ fair. Let us know which stands you plan to visit.

Joanna Bowery

Joanna Bowery
SfEP Social Media Manager

Joanna Bowery is the SfEP social media manager. As well as looking after the SfEP’s Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn accounts and the SfEP blog, she offers freelance marketing, PR, writing and proofreading services operating as Cosmic Frog. Jo is an associate of the SfEP and a Chartered Marketer. She is active on Facebook, Twitter, LinkedIn and Google+.

This article was proofread by SfEP associate Karen Pickavance.

The views expressed here do not necessarily reflect those of the SfEP.

A copy of Martin Chuzzlewit before being restored by Exeter Bookbinders

SfEP Devon group discovers the beauty of bookbinding

Chaim Ebanks from Exeter Bookbinders demonstrates bookbinding to the Devon SfEP group

Chaim Ebanks from Exeter Bookbinders

The beauty of a good piece of writing is in its content and style, which is what the editor and proofreader will tend to focus on. But hard-copy books are about more than cleverly written prose – they can often be works of art in their own right. Books can engage all our senses: the heady smell when you enter a bookshop; the sound of the paper as you turn a page; the salt you can almost taste on your lips as you read a scene depicting a windswept beach; and the pleasure that courses through your veins as you caress that dog-eared copy of your favourite novel.

Sadly, despite lots of TLC, our most treasured books can become more than a bit dog-eared. And that’s where expert bookbinders can come to the rescue, restoring our special books to their former glory.

After a fascinating session on bookbinding at last year’s SfEP conference, the SfEP Devon group recently invited Chaim Ebanks from Exeter Bookbinders to speak at one of its regular meetings in Exeter. Armed with a bone folder, needle and waxed thread, goatskin, and two Marmite jars containing mysterious ingredients (definitely not what was on the label), Chaim set about demonstrating the ancient art of bookbinding.

The session began with a brief history of writing systems covering soft clay tablets, the introduction of scrolls, the advent of paper and the use of wax tablets.

Chaim then set about demonstrating how to bind a book. The process involves sewing signatures – the folded papers that will become sections of pages – together with waxed thread before adding open-weave calico tapes to cover the sewing and strengthen the spine. The spine is then glued with polyvinyl acetate (one of the mysterious concoctions in Ebanks’s Marmite jars). Once the glue has dried, endpapers are added to the front and back and the book is covered with goatskin. The book is then placed in a clamp overnight to exclude any excess air and ensure a tight finish. The bone folder (made of whalebone) is used throughout the process to eliminate any creases or baggy edges.

Having demonstrated how to bind a book, Chaim then set to work adapting the process to restore a rather worn-out hardback copy of Dickens’s Martin Chuzzlewit. The book had definitely seen better days and its cover was completely detached.

A copy of Martin Chuzzlewit before being restored by Exeter Bookbinders

Before

However, after gently dismantling the cover and spine, Chaim added a new cover and endpapers before applying liberal amounts of bookbinders’ paste (the other mysterious concoction in his Marmite jars) to reveal a miraculously rejuvenated book.

 

The restored volume of Martin Chuzzlewit after Chaim Ebanks of Exeter Bookbinders rebound the book.

After

It still has the character of an old book, its pages marked with foxing (browned due to the ferrous oxidisation of the acid in the paper), but now has a polished cover and gleaming name plate. The book is ready to be cherished for many years to come.

 

As with many SfEP local groups, the session ended with a chance to enjoy tea and cake and chat to other proofreaders and editors in the area. The Devon SfEP group are grateful to Alison Shakspeare and Rosalind Davies for organising the event and to Chaim Ebanks for taking the time to share his knowledge and expertise with them. Chaim and his colleagues at Exeter Bookbinders are happy to speak at events; you can contact them via the Exeter Bookbinders website.

There are many local SfEP groups throughout the UK and beyond – there is even an international group. Meetings vary from informal gatherings over tea or dinner to organised events such as the bookbinding talk. To find out more about what’s going on near you, visit the local groups page on the SfEP website.

Joanna Bowery social media manager at the Society for Editors and Proofreaders (SfEP)

Joanna Bowery

Joanna Bowery is the SfEP social media manager and a member of the Devon SfEP group. As well as looking after the SfEP’s Facebook, Twitter and LinkedIn accounts and the SfEP blog, she is a freelance marketing and PR consultant operating as Cosmic Frog. Jo is an associate of the SfEP and a Chartered Marketer. In her spare time, Jo enjoys rugby (although she has retired from playing) and running.

 

The views expressed here do not necessarily reflect those of the SfEP.