November 2015


If you’re already regretting not going to Redact this year, it will only get worse reading the reports from each of the three streams. Thanks to organiser Liz Steele and participants Carolyn Leslie, Jessica Hoadley and Astrid Judge for sharing their Redact experiences.

And something else that might make you a tiny bit jealous is our Q&A this month with Joely Taylor. Not only does she get to play with cute dingo pups (yes, there is a pic) but she has also started her own publishing imprint, to help out her clients and publish her own books. In a separate article, Joely also explains the ins and outs of getting certification from the Board of Editors in the Life Sciences – another of her recent achievements.


President’s Report

November already! How can it be?

I love this festive, fast-paced month. Hope you do too. Mine is always a treat – it kicks off with the wonderful Wangaratta Jazz & Blues and bookends at the other end of the state with Queenscliff Music Festival.

IPEd Direct Membership Model Final Vote

Please vote. We’ve now reached the end of proxy voting online, but there’s still time to attend in person at our special general meeting on 12 November to decide whether to be direct members of IPEd. This is not a dinner meeting; it’s convened solely to vote in person, but we’ll welcome you and make sure you don’t go hungry or thirsty by putting on light refreshments.


Redact: Wonderful Learning (and Food)

Editors Victoria's fourth Redact intensive workshop was a stunning success in mid-October at the Grange Bellinzona in Hepburn Springs. Three groups of eager editors were treated to superb training on manuscript assessment, editing digital content and how to supercharge your editing business. Redacters focused intently on learning new skills and networked just as intensely during the many, but much needed, coffee and tea breaks and over lunches and our superb Saturday night dinner.

Reversioning annual report

Editing digital content team working on creating annual report content for online readers. (Credit: Liz Steele)


Redact #1: A Recipe for a Supercharged Business Cocktail

Take one highly energised business coach. Add six freelance editors. Pour them into a Hepburn Springs conference room and let infuse for two days. To serve, drizzle into several newly revitalised freelance businesses, and garnish with ongoing, sustainable success.

The Supercharge Your Business stream at Redact 2015 saw business coach Ilona Way working closely with several freelance editors. From the very start, Ilona impressed upon us that ‘YOU are your business!’

Presenter of the Supercharge Your Business stream Ilona Way (3rd from right)

L-R: Liz Steele, Jackey Coyle, Claire Duffy, presenter Ilona Way, Rosemary Purcell,  Astrid Judge (Credit: Liz Steele)


Redact #2: Diagnosing a Manuscript’s Problems

Thirteen eager editors ranging from two years’ experience (yours truly) to over two decades’ experience sat down around a big table in the Oak Room to learn about manuscript assessment from the astute and articulate Nadine Davidoff.

We were here to learn how to turn that intuitive gut feeling about a piece of writing into a practical road map for authors. To do this, we played doctors.

Presenter Nadine Davidoff (3rd from right)

L-R: Catherine Norwood, Andrea Davison, Josiane Smith, presenter Nadine Davidoff, Kim Logan, Jessica Hoadley (Credit: Liz Steele)


Redact #3: Editing Digital Content

At the start of the Editing Digital Content workshop, our presenter, John Ryan, introduced a natty turn of phrase. He urged us to watch out for ‘the eleventh-hour content shitstorm’, as defined by a fellow content strategist, American Karen McGrane. It typically occurs when the ‘wireframes’ set up early on by IT specialists developing the framework for a website, and often filled in with random Latin ‘placeholder content’, must be filled with actual, meaningful words, written in English.

John Ryan, Editing Digital Content presenter (3rd from left)

L-R: Harriet Empey, Michaela Skelly, presenter John Ryan, Lorna Hendry (Credit: Liz Steele)


The Monthly Q&A: Joely Taylor

Joely Taylor is a Melbourne-based freelance editor, writer and publisher. Her business, Well Writ, was started in 2010 as an exit strategy from her imminently redundant scientific career. Joely edits mainly scientific, technical and academic texts but enjoys the occasional educational textbook as well. Joely started her micropublishing imprint, Billycan Press, in late 2014 as a means of taking her clients’ work through to publication. She’s written and self-published two books since starting her publishing business.

How has your month been?

Over the past month I’ve done some editing for a research organisation and I’ve also edited a report for a consultant whom I work with on a regular basis. I’ve been involved with the IPEd Accreditation Board and I’ve also spent a lot of time marketing my new book and calling libraries to make sure that they know about it. Over the past few months all of my spare time went towards studying for the Board of Editors in the Life Sciences (BELS) exam, which was held in Brisbane in August. I received my official results last week and can now add the postnominal ELS (Editor in the Life Sciences) to my name.


Going for the ‘BELS’ and Whistles

I first became aware of the Board of Editors in the Life Sciences (BELS) a few years ago after receiving my IPEd accreditation. I am a strong supporter of accreditation for editors and was looking for an accreditation that would highlight my skills in editing scientific content. A few editors recommended I look into BELS, and in January 2015 it was announced that a BELS exam would be offered in Australia.

BELS was established by editors in the United States in 1991 in order to offer an accreditation specific to manuscript editors in the life sciences. Just as in Australia, life science editors in the United States come into their roles through a number of different journeys; many of those journeys do not involve formal education or benchmarked criteria. The BELS goal was to ‘award credentials similar to those obtainable in other professions’.


Training in Indexing: Info Session

Have you ever thought about supplementing your editing, proofreading or library/ information management skills with indexing, or just want to hone your indexing skills? If so, then this one-hour Melbourne Indexers seminar is for you.

The University of California, Berkeley Extension offers a six-month, part-time, online indexing course. The course provides a through grounding in predominantly back-of-book indexing. The course, although American, includes Australian and Canadian content, where it differs from US indexing practice. The course has the highest success rate for completion of any indexing course in the world, and the highest success rate of graduates finding real work. 


Meet Some More Committee Members

Sally Holdsworth is a new committee member to Editors Victoria. She has over 20 years’ experience in senior corporate roles and now provides business consulting and communication services for small to medium-sized enterprises and not-for-profit organisations. She is completing the Associate Degree in Professional Writing and Editing at RMIT. Sally is in the communications subcommittee.