Monday, July 27, 2009

Working As a Freelance Editor

Do any of my academic peeps have any experience working as freelance editors? Do you have any websites or listserv archives on the subject? I actually really love editing, and I'm thinking that it would be cool to advertise my services. I have some resources on what to charge and how to advertise, but I'm wondering about ethics. Can I create a page on my university website advertising my services? Should I keep it separate? Or is it typical for engineers and other scientists to mention their consulting work on their official university webspace?

And I imagine I should have a caveat about doing no editing for anyone associated with my university. Should I widen that to say that I will do no editing for anyone writing for any class at any university? I imagine it would be fine to edit theses and dissertations at other schools, or am I wrong?

Right now, I'm just thinking, just exploring options. If anyone has any advice, links, or experiences, I'd love to hear them.


  1. I always refused to handle dissertations from my own department, but as I was a TA rather than a faculty member I don't know if it was as important for me. In any case, most of my work was for non-native-English-speaker MBA students, so it wasn't an issue.

  2. I looked at how some of the academic I know who do some extensive consulting represent themselves on the web, and most have a separate web presence for that. There's a senior WAC scholar, for example, with an extensive web presence on a non-university site (although it's linked to from his university in obvious places); a colleague in tech comm has a separate consulting CV on his university website (in addition to an academic CV) and there's a link to a discussion of his consulting experience on the university website; my former department chair had a separate consulting business that had its own website, although I can't find it now, so perhaps that retired when he did. Your university probably has some ethics regulations about how much another position can pay (or demand in time). I think it makes sense to set up a separate web presence for the editing work as it's not a part of your university duties, and perhaps link over to it as appropriate.