The CIEP offers a wide range of support and professional development material on proofreading and copyediting. In this post the Institute’s information team summarises the resources available to our members and to the public.
Here’s what we’ll be looking at in this post.
- CIEP resources
- fact sheets
- focus papers
- the CIEP blog
- newsletters and
- what’s coming up in 2021
Our information team works with experienced editorial professionals and industry leaders to provide trusted advice and practical knowhow on working with English language texts. These range from tips on getting started, gleaned from practitioners’ years of experience, to the fine details of editorial markup and proofreading etiquette, plus insights into evolving usage and when to recognise it’s an ‘it depends’ situation rather than a rule of grammar.
Our guides provide a basic introduction to the various skills and knowledge needed to work as an editorial professional.
On 1 February 2021, we published a revised edition of the Going Solo: Creating your freelance editorial business guide, written by Sue Littleford. CIEP members also have access to the Going Solo Toolkit, which includes a suite of spreadsheet tools to keep track of business records.
Fact sheets are brief introductions to a topic or issue related to practical aspects of editing or proofreading, or working as an editor or proofreader. They aren’t comprehensive but give tips related to the topic and a list of further resources.
Editors work on all kinds of text, from marketing materials, theses and reports to blogs and websites. However, a core area of work for many editors is still books, for print or online publication. All books are different, but many adhere to a standard basic structure. This helps the author and the publisher order the information, but more importantly it helps the reader navigate the finished book, making it a truly useful and accessible resource.
FREE DOWNLOAD: Anatomy of a book
As soon as you agree to take on work for a client, or to complete a task for a colleague, you are under an obligation to ensure the work is completed as agreed. But whether you are a business owner or an employee you will always have other tasks on your to-do list: juggling expectations and moving deadlines, managing yourself and others, chasing invoices and marketing your services, as well as coping with personal matters that may have an impact on your capacity to work. Do you have a plan for how to cope if disaster strikes?
MEMBER RESOURCE: Building a business resilience and disaster plan
Focus papers explore an aspect of the English language or editorial practice that:
- challenges assumptions
- offers a new perspective on, illuminates or addresses a problem
- helps readers better understand the value of professional editing, either their own practice or as potential users of editorial services (or both!).
They are written by well-known and expert names in their field, including CIEP honorary president David Crystal, linguist Rob Drummond and editor Sarah Grey.
If only the whole world had a language in common, war could be avoided. Thatʼs what LL Zamenhof thought when he developed Esperanto in 1887. Esperanto wasnʼt meant to replace anyoneʼs home language, but it would create a common ground for people from different backgrounds. It would make communication easier and more direct, reducing the need for go-betweens like translators and interpreters.
FREE RESOURCE: In a globalised world, should we retain different Englishes? by Lynne Murphy
MEMBER RESOURCE: To whom it may concern, by Jeremy Butterfield
The CIEP blog
The CIEP blog aims to provide useful and entertaining articles for anyone interested in editing, proofreading, the English language, starting and managing an editorial business, and publishing more widely.
Like many freelancers, I was hit hard by the pandemic. 2020 started well enough, including a huge two-month project for a Commission. But in the week before we went into lockdown last March, I ran into deep trouble. First, as businesses battened down their financial hatches, all the projects I’d had booked in up to mid-June were cancelled by my clients.
Reviving my editorial business, by Louise Bolotin
There are some words I should think about before saying them. Instead, I mispronounce with confidence and blasé out people’s corrections: ‘If-eat? Are you sure? All my French friends rhyme effete with tête.’ (The friends I have yet to make.) There are other words that I rehearse before sharing aloud, such as conscious and conscience. But present me with a dot dot dot and I dither between ellipsis and ellipses. It makes me sound like I don’t really know what it is or they are.
A Finer Point: Read my ellipsis, by Riffat Yusuf
Coming in 2021 …
And there’s more to come … In 2021 we hope to publish guides on punctuation, editing recipes and cookbooks, working with self-publishers and editing scientific research articles. There will be fact sheets on well-being, software for editing and proofreading, and fact checking, and focus papers by Tom Shakespeare, Stan Carey and other well-known names. No doubt the wise owls will appear more than once on the blog, alongside articles about Plain English in fiction and sub-editing.
Wrapping up: CIEP resources
Now you know what CIEP resources are available, have a look at the ones that are relevant to you. Don’t forget:
- You can download free fact sheets and focus papers (and even more if you are a CIEP member).
- Guides provide handy introductions to the skills and knowledge needed to work as an editorial professional.
- The CIEP blog is updated with new content regularly.
Which CIEP resource has been most useful to you so far? Which one are you planning to read next? Let us know in the comments. If you don’t already receive our Editorial Excellence newsletter, click on the button below to subscribe.
About the CIEP information team
Liz Jones, Abi Saffrey and Cathy Tingle are the CIEP’s information commissioning editors. If there’s a topic that you think could be covered in a blog post, fact sheet, focus paper or guide, drop the team a line at firstname.lastname@example.org.
The Chartered Institute of Editing and Proofreading (CIEP) is a non-profit body promoting excellence in English language editing. We set and demonstrate editorial standards, and we are a community, training hub and support network for editorial professionals – the people who work to make text accurate, clear and fit for purpose.
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