Today is Arbor Day, a holiday in which we are encouraged to plant trees. I don’t know about you, but I do not have the resources or the experience necessary to plant a tree today. However, I have supported companies that plant trees for every product that you buy.
Every year, I send out Christmas cards featuring photos of my dogs, and I design and send them through a company called Paper Culture. “Instead of cutting down forests to fill your order,” says Paper Culture, “we use post-consumer waste and wood alternatives. We plant a tree with every order.”
For our wedding, my husband and I ordered wine from ONEHOPE. At ONEHOPE, every bottle of wine that you order makes some sort of social impact: helping to end childhood hunger, getting shelter animals adopted, providing clean drinking water, etc. (Ordering California Sauvignon Blanc supports the environment.)
In February, I copy edited a book intended for social entrepreneurs (i.e., people who want to start a business with the goal of solving social problems). The author poses the question, "Think of your field as a whole. Is it known for being stagnant or innovative?" I chuckled and thought about the copy editor stereotype: an elderly white woman with glasses, similar to the librarian stereotype, but instead of holding their index finger to their lips, they are holding a red pen and looking down at your work with disappointment.
Now that I’m 26, my husband keeps teasing me about being in my “late twenties.” (He’s two years younger than me.) Long ago are the days when I would hang a celebrity’s poster on my wall and think about how grown up they seemed. It's weird that I'm the same age as Cardi B...
Being born in 1993 makes me a millennial, and being a millennial has actually been a benefit to me as a copy editor. We spent our childhood years making mud pies and playing with Play-Doh, but we also grew up with the Internet and social media — allowing us to balance the old and the new. In university, I received a formal technical writing and editing education, even learning the traditional proofreading marks that our stereotypical copy editor would have used before Track Changes was invented. But I also took courses dedicated to document design, analyzing audiences, and inbound marketing.
As a copy editor, I see ads for Grammarly all the time. (By now you probably know that ads are customized to you.) Grammarly is an online grammar checking, spell checking, and plagiarism detection platform. And you can start using it for free.
I downloaded the Chrome extension to check it out.
When you are searching for a copy editor, first ask yourself whether you are looking for a beginner, an intermediate, or an advance copy editor:
Side-Hustle: work performed for income supplementary to one’s primary job
It seems like everyone interested in a side hustle wants to start copy editing. And with all of these freelance copy editors out there, it may be hard to determine which ones are qualified for your particular project.
Here are 5 simple questions that will help you get to know your copy editor:
Before becoming a part-time technical writer for an IT division, technology intimidated me. When I was in college, I didn’t take courses such as “Writing on the Web” or “Writing Software Documentation” because I was sure that those topics would fly right over my head.
Who would have guessed that I would be an IT technical writer three years later.
As a marketing specialist and daughter of two veterans, I did some research on tasteful vs. offensive Memorial Day social media posts, and now I see offensive posts everywhere I turn.
This is the most cringe-worthy Facebook post from a local business I follow:
“We have all your Memorial Day Weekend dessert needs! Come pick up some treats to make your holiday complete! We are open 7am-7pm AND Monday! Come visit us!"
Keeping this post in mind, here are my 5 “Don’ts” to avoid today on Facebook, Instagram, and Twitter:
On average, it takes more than 2 months to form a habit. Starting a New Year’s Resolution in January and expecting to become a different person by February is annoyingly unrealistic. Therefore, I believe in breaking up your resolutions into month-sized morsels (i.e., setting up monthly tasks).
The following New Year’s Resolution ideas are from my perspective as a copy editor, seeing what clients typically have questions about or struggle with:
This month, Little Rock Soirée focuses on taking care of yourself and the people you love. While copy editing this issue, there was one interview that made me say, “Jake, come listen to this story! It’s incredible.”
Bailey Faulkner, Director of Ozark Mission Project, told Soirée about the project’s mission, challenges, and how people can get involved. By working with local youth groups, Ozark Mission Project serves surrounding communities through physical labor: repairing porches, painting houses, mowing lawns, and the like.
But while the project has helped many struggling single moms, retirees, and disabled persons, there is one story that has really stayed with Bailey:
Issues like this one keep me proud to be the copy editor of Little Rock Soirée. Packed with information about philanthropic organizations and events, I couldn’t pick just one to write about.
If you are a small business owner in Arkansas, consider adding these three charitable events to your April calendar.
Alora D. Boerner
Freelance copy editor serving nonfiction writers, small business owners, and job seekers.