Monthly Archives: May 2018

What’s an acceptable error rate for an editor?

I have found this article from the marvellous industry journal considering acceptable error rates for editors extremely useful for sharing with clients and setting expectations. Although editors/proofreaders do tend to be perfectionists, we are human, and it’s good for us and our clients to remember this.

If a piece is full of errors, even a 99% accurate editor will leave some errors behind.

Read Adrienne Montgomerie’s article, “Error Rates in Copyediting” here.

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Posted by on May 31, 2018 in Copyediting, proofreading


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Small business chat update – Shelly Terry

Small business chat update – Shelly Terry

Welcome to another update and a big change for one of our former crafty ladies, as this time round Shelly Terry from hand-made card company, Evelyn Mae, has become Shelly Terry from social media management and strategy and coaching company, Sheldon & Co. We first met Shelly back in in February 2013,  and then updated with her in March 2014, February 2015, April 2016 and, most recently, May 2017. At that point, Shelly was still making cards and was thinking ahead to shifts in her daughter’s routine and how that might affect her business, a very real concern for all those entrepreneur parents out there: “Next year I have a feeling it will all change when my daughter starts to drop her naps – I am hoping this is the same time she can attend nursery, so I can still have some designated work hours, but we shall see!” But what happened next? Something exciting, I think …

Hello again, Shelly! I suspect not, but are you where you thought you’d be when you looked forward a year ago?

Absolutely not! My daughter did indeed drop her nap, and I have a better pattern for working, but everything else about my business changed!

What has changed and what has stayed the same?

So I have a brand new business that I didn’t plan on having this time last year! In September a business friend asked for help with managing her business Facebook account, and I now run a business as a social media manager, strategist and coach! I help other entrepreneurs to manage their social media accounts, build Facebook shops and put a social media strategy in place and help them to create content for their online platforms.

I also run a free coaching group in Facebook which gives business owners support in creating content for their social media platforms, and guidance on developing strategy to implement in their own business.

What have you learned? What do you wish you’d known a year ago?

I have learned to plan my year better, this business is already out-doing my previous one, even after 8 months, so there is so much room to grow, that I need to be organised. I absolutely love it!

I wish I had known that I would find a career that was a surprise, but that I adored – I might have pursued it before it found me! I have had a variety of jobs in the past from college lecturer to actress, and it has surprised me to find a career that encompasses all of that!

Any more hints and tips for people?

Be as prepared and as organised as you can be for your business ideas, and work towards that ‘ideal’ business you have in your mind’s eye- but don’t be so blinkered that you miss other opportunities that you don’t even know exist yet!

And … where do you see yourself and your business in a(nother) year’s time?

We are moving house, so I envisage I will be working out of a new office space that is far tidier and more organised than my current one. I also hope to have some larger clients on books, as my daughter will have 15 hours of pre-school so I will have a lot more time to invest in my exciting new business!

I also plan currently to continue with my greetings card business for now – but I think at some point I will have to decide how viable it is along side my new business. Time will tell!

Wow – an impressive shift. I love what Shelly says about being organised yet open to new opportunities – I’ve often mentioned that a whole half of my business came about when I saw a tweet from a journalist I followed who needed a transcriber and thought “Why not put my audio-typing training to good use?” and now I spend half my time transcribing for journalists, academics and ghostwriters, something I’d have never imagined when I started out as an editor. Have a look at these lovely new links and I can’t wait to see what Shelly does with her new business!

… and her lovely cards still going at

If you’ve enjoyed this interview, please see more small business chat, the index to all the interviewees, and information on how you can have your business featured. If you’re considering setting up a new business or have recently done so, why not take a look at my books, all available now, in print and e-book formats, from a variety of sources. 

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Posted by on May 26, 2018 in Business, Small Business Chat


What else do editors and other small business owners do?

I haven’t got a Small Business Chat to share with you all today, so I thought I’d have a bit of fun and ask the editing and general small business community … what else do you do?

I’ll go first, shall I, then I’d love it if people shared in the comments. I’m looking for maybe surprising things you do outside of your job / business, whether that’s sport, crafts, volunteering or family responsibilities, whatever any of those things mean to you.

I’m an editor, proofreader, transcriber and localiser, and while my long-lasting hobby of reading All The Things (see my book review blog here) also keeps me sitting on my bottom a lot, my other hobby is running and all things to do with running.

So as well as running myself (I’m pictured here with running chums having done my third marathon, a DIY one), I’m a qualified Run Leader (so I can support groups of new and established runners), I’ve just qualified as a Level One Endurance Official (meaning I am working my way up through the levels of officiating at cross-country and road races), I regularly volunteer to lead runs and support beginners at my running club and I’m a committed parkrun volunteer. Keeps me busy and on my feet and outdoors, which is really important for balance in my life and keeping me socialised, too!

How do you keep balance in your life and switch off from your work responsibilities. Do share in the comments, and of course feel free to include your URL!


Posted by on May 5, 2018 in Uncategorized