I am a co-owner of the Christian Editor Network LLC, parent company to four organizations for editorial freelancers. One of these organizations is The Christian PEN, which I founded in 2004.
Getting established as a freelance editor can be difficult. You may have excellent skills, but how do you find the contacts?
Even after you’ve been doing it for a while, freelance editing is often a “feast or famine” business. Some months there’s more work than you know how to handle (which is often a mixed blessing) and other months you wonder if you’ll have enough income to pay the bills (and your friends and family members start nagging you to “get a real job”).
Once you’ve established yourself as a professional, you get to a point where you don’t have time to do every job that comes your way. You may not want to turn down jobs, but you have to be selective about what new clients to take on.
Freelance editors at all levels are occasionally asked to work on projects outside their fields of expertise. If you don’t know who to refer such jobs to, your only options are to attempt the work anyway (and hope you do a decent job of it) or turn down the business.
In addition, most freelance editors and proofreaders work in solitude, without the opportunity to communicate with others who face situations similar to their own.
The Christian PEN was created to help solve these problems.
This organization can take some of the load off your shoulders when your schedule is overbooked and can be a source of additional jobs when your workload is slim.
The network also provides a way to make contact with reliable Christian professionals who specialize in areas outside your realm of expertise. (Being a good referral source will ultimately do far more for your professional reputation than taking on the wrong project and doing a mediocre job.)
There are many online groups for Christian writers. It’s time Christian editors had a network of their own!
The Christian PEN is dedicated to equipping aspiring and established freelance editors with education, networking, and community.
1. Our Website
TheChristianPEN.com has articles, links, and resources specifically for editorial freelancers. Some members receive editing jobs directly through the website’s “Find an Editor” page.
2. The Christian PEN Online
Silver and Gold Members can benefit from our e-mail discussion loop in these ways: post messages relevant to freelance proofreading, editing, and related occupations
- exchange ideas, tips, news, findings, questions/answers, resources, and suggestions
- post details on conferences and events
- ask questions about editing, proofreading, and other aspects of Christian publishing
- share discoveries from The Chicago Manual of Style and other publishing references
- pass on writing and business tips
- enjoy online fellowship and networking (We also encourage members to post a notice if they’re planning to attend a writers’ conference or similar function so they can make efforts to meet other members in person.)
3. TCP-Prayer Online Group
This subgroup of The Christian PEN is a forum for sharing prayer requests, praises, and other personal messages.
HOW TO JOIN
Visit TheChristianPEN.com to for more information or to apply for membership.
SPREAD THE WORD
If you know of other Christian freelance editors or proofreaders who might be interested in this group, please feel free to tell them about The Christian PEN: Proofreaders and Editors Network.