This blog post is part of the Sponge Chats video series.
Lately we have really been pushing the boundaries regarding ‘positions’ within ELT, and this Sponge Chat is no different. I got to sit down with teacher and ELT editor, Zoe Smith, who was kind enough to tell us about her journey from teaching to ‘editing’. You may not have heard Zoe’s name before, but you have most likely read or worked with something that she has been involved in producing – just take a look at her online portfolio which highlights some of the projects she has worked on.
If you are like me, you are probably quite clueless regarding the publishing and editing world. My eyes have only just started opening after speaking with people such as Emma Heyderman, Sue Kay and Karen Spiller. There is so much that goes on ‘behind the scenes’, and Zoe was kind enough to share her part in the process. One of the parts I found most interesting was the definition or roles that people can take on within publishing. For example, we looked at the difference between a copy editor and a proof reader – do you know what it is?
Zoe also shared PLENTY of advice regarding how to move into editing, as well as some words of caution – it may not be for everyone. She also mentioned a number of very important people/groups you might like to check out:
- Rachael Roberts for well-being in ELT (On a side note, if you have never heard of Rachael, you need to check her out. She has loads of videos and resources for freelances, and her aims is to pretty much make life easier and more enjoyable for you!)
- Atena Jusko for ELT freelancers information and support (Atena is another super experienced editor you should check out!)
- ELT Publishing Professionals for getting work and support (I spoke to Sue Kay and Karen Spiller from ELT Publishing Professionals in another Sponge Chat – the fact that many materials writers, editors, etc. are mentioning both ELT publishing Professionals and ELT Teacher 2 Writer probably means you should check them out)
- MaWSIG from IATEFL for loads of ideas, support, opportunities and, of course, a network
Zoe went into details about her experiences with certain qualifications and courses, and the extent to which these were necessary for her success. And, as usual, we have some brilliant book recommendations:
- ELT Teacher2Writer series
- No Nonsense Guide to Writing, ELT Writers Connected
- The Copyeditor’s Handbook (& Workbook), Amy Einsohn and Marilyn Schwartz
- Louise Harnby books
This Sponge Chat really helped me see that there are so many things going on in the editorial world. It really builds on nicely from my chat with Sue Kay and Karen Spiller, and I feel it will give you all a very interesting look at what there is to do. With this in mind, I hope you find Zoe’s information, thoughts, opinions, etc. enjoyable and informative.
Zoe also has a huge list on her website.
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