Dirt is in my blood. My maternal grandparents were Ontario dairy farmers who grew all their own vegetables. My parents were part of the back-to-the-land migration in the 1960s, and my fascination with nature and growing things has never left me, even during the years I lived in big cities. Growing up on a farm is an earth education, one that I loved as a child and spent years trying to reconstruct as an adult.
But I also had an equal fascination with words. So, after an Honours Bachelor of Journalism from Carleton University, I worked in the magazine industry for a decade, editing hundreds of individual magazine issues--and many award-winning stories--for more than a dozen different publications. In Toronto, I worked for high-profile consumer magazines like Toronto Life, Canadian Living, The Financial Post Magazine, Canadian Business, and Cottage Life. In Vancouver, I worked with some of Western Canada's leading publications, including Western Living, Vancouver Magazine, and B.C. Business.
As a freelance editor, I've worked on corporate and non-profit reports, marketing programs, websites and contract magazines. UBC's Sustainability Office, the City of Burnaby, the Inner Activist (a pioneering organization bringing personal development programs to social activists), Fairmont Hotels and Resorts, the Metro Vancouver Regional District and BC Hydro have all been valued clients. I've been a member of the Editors' Association of Canada since 1987 and the Professional Editors' Association of Vancouver Island since 2001.
I've also helped many writers, including a New York Times bestselling author, create potent stories that have won awards and routinely made it on to bestseller lists.
After many years in urban centres, I've been living happily in the small but growing community of Sooke for almost 20 years with my partner Jeff Bateman, a former journalist, now turned municipal councillor and community organizer. Our half-acre property on the outskirts of town is a work in progress as we slowly transform it from a typical, suburban, ornamental garden to one that is a home to wildlife and a source of year-round food for its human inhabitants.
"Carolyn has an uncanny ability to enter a writer's thoughts and gently but firmly guide the author in turning good writing into excellent work."
Turning over a
new leaf 🍃
For more than 25 years, I've worked closely with a bestselling fiction author, a wonderful collaboration for which I'll be forever grateful. His retirement in spring 2020 wasn't a shock, but it was an adjustment at a time when we were all adjusting to the new reality of life in a global pandemic. Since then I've continued working with other long-time and valued clients, but there's now space to also venture out and bring my unique skills and experience to new clients. I recently completed a certificate training in The Science and Art of Herbalism with well-known American herbalist Rosemary Gladstar. And I'm currently enrolled in a year-long permaculture course facilitated by the Women's Permaculture Guild. For the past 25 years I've taken part in a lot of online environmental and social justice activism, writing letters and emails, signing petitions, raising money locally and attending rallies and seminars. It's time to integrate that work into my work with clients and I'm excited about the possibilities.