February 2019

Tips and tricks: Tabs for Word time saver (February 2019)

by Bridget Blair

Do you find yourself with multiple Word documents open while you work? There may be a style sheet, an author brief, a formatting template, plus several chapters of manuscript for cross-referencing. Every time you need to check one of these documents, you have to move the cursor to the Word symbol on the task bar at the bottom, wait for the docs to pop up, move your cursor to the right one and click to open. Or continuously alt-tab to scroll through them all. Recently I was working on a series of cookbooks which had seven reference documents, including ready reckoners for converting measurements (weight, volume, oven temperatures, etc.), and I had to swap between them constantly. All that extra mousing added up to a lot of time and wrist strain, and it was driving me mad. Why, I thought, can’t Microsoft use a system of tabs, like internet browsers and Adobe products do?

Tabs for Word crop



Welcome to our first newsletter for 2019. We’ve got some holiday reading in Renée Otmar’s review of a biography of Beatrice Davis – one of Australia’s very first editors at a publishing house. Renée weaves in a bit of history of our society (that is, the then Society of Editors (Victoria)) and her own development as an editor.

Renée also updates us on conference news. Remember that earlybird booking closes very soon – on 6 February.

Our list of upcoming training courses now reaches into September 2019, and Nadine Davidoff’s new ‘Editing narrative non-fiction’ course is open for booking. One of our trainers, grammar guru Glenys Osborne, is our editor Q&A subject this month – you’ll see she also has many other strings to her bow.


Book and Client of the Year Award winners for 2018

IPEd Victorian branch members had the opportunity to vote for their book of the year – both fiction and non-fiction categories – and their client of the year. Here are the winners, as announced at our Christmas function. We sent them each a virtual bunch of flowers and a virtual trophy.

Book of the year



Markus Zusak: Bridge of clay


Beyond the Page 9th IPEd National Editors Conference update

by Renée Otmar HLM DE

 BTP logo blue

Provisional program

A provisional program has been published on the website. More detailed information will be added as presenters and sessions are finalised, so keep an eye on the website and blog posts.

BELS exam

We can confirm that the Board of Editors in the Life Sciences (BELS) will offer an examination on 11 May 2019, in conjunction with the conference, at Editors Victoria’s regular training venue, the Centre for Adult Education (CAE).


SciFLyers meet-up

The SciFLyers are an informal group of freelance science editors, capably captained by Kerry Brown. Their next meeting is at Kerry’s house in East Ivanhoe at 10am Friday 22 February – a chance for convivial shoptalk with fellow editors, and a cuppa.

Contact Kerry at drkb48@gmail.com   for more details and to RSVP.

Day trip to Cow Cow, Foster

Chat in the Secret Editors’ Business Facebook group (for IPEd members) has got some of us planning a day trip to Editors Victoria member Anne Roussac-Hoyne’s new café, Cow Cow, in Foster. Yes, in Gippsland.

Why? To meet up with other editors, have a fun day, and have the chance to try some of Cow Cow’s French pastries (or is that just me?). Maybe even drop in to see Anne’s gallery next door – she seems to be taking over Foster!

How? Well, it’s a long way so car-pooling from Melbourne would be the go, although people can come from places other than Melbourne too, of course. Any further arrangements will have to be made when we get some takers and choose a date.


Melbourne Indexers

Editors Victoria members are welcome to attend our meetings, held on the first Thursday of the month.

Next meeting: 6–8pm Thursday 7 February

Topic: Military and wartime history

In recent times there has been a resurgence of interest in the history and commemoration of twentieth-century wars and those who served in them, especially in the lead-up to the 100th anniversaries of the Gallipoli campaign and the ending of World War I. This interest has been accompanied by the publication of numerous books on wartime and military history ranging from biographies of major military figures, detailed analyses of military strategy and reports of archaeological digs on battlefields to battlefield tourism guidebooks. There have also been many publications on the actions of the military in more contemporary conflicts and peacekeeping missions.


Review: ‘A certain style: Beatrice Davis – a literary life’ by Jacqueline Kent

by Renée Otmar HLM DE


When Beatrice Davis died in May 1992, I was a new mother, a fledgling editor and a newbie student in RMIT’s Graduate Diploma in Editing and Publishing. The course had commenced on the same day I gave birth to my son, and I had to start six weeks late. About a month later, one of our lecturers, Ruth Siems, convinced me to attend a meeting of the then-Society of Editors (Victoria), of which she was president. I’d never even heard of it before then, and assumed it was a kind of secret society.


Editor Q&A: Glenys Osborne

In January, Jane Fitzpatrick sat down with Glenys Osborne, grammar guru and long-time trainer for Editors Victoria, and tried to fathom how she fits it all in: editing and teaching, as well as working on two novels, a grammar text, a collection of short stories and a PhD.

When did you first become aware of grammar? Did you have a significant teacher?

My father had learnt Latin at school and worked as a proofreader, so he was always talking about language and grammar. He worked at places such as the Argus and in trade houses such as Dova Type, which was a significant trade house in Melbourne at the time. He later became a typesetter.


New course now open: ‘Editing narrative non-fiction’

with Nadine Davidoff

10am–1pm, 16 March 2019

This workshop will equip editors with the necessary skills to confidently assess narrative non-fiction writing.

We will examine the key concepts of successful non-fiction – such as voice, narrative propulsion, clarity, colour and cohesion – and discuss how to frame your response so that a writer may develop these essential elements in their work.

We will look at exemplary examples of the craft, drawn from a wide range of authors, and critique writing that falls short of these benchmarks. In formulating our responses to these texts, we will be guided by the following such questions: