In essence, all communication is a form of storytelling and can inspire and facilitate positive change when it is clear, powerful and focused. I believe in keeping the reader in mind at all times, so I put emphasis on knowing your reader and communicating with them respectfully, accessibly and informatively. An early mentor of mine, a former chief copy editor at Chatelaine magazine, used to refer to "the gentle reader." These days, this is more important than ever. Readers are busy, distracted and usually in a hurry! Let's make reading whatever you have written for them as clear and enjoyable as possible.
I began my career as a magazine editor more than 35 years ago after graduating with an Honours Bachelor of Journalism from Carleton University. Since then I've edited hundreds of individual magazine issues for more than two dozen different publications. While in Toronto, I worked for such high-profile consumer magazines as Toronto Life, City & Country Home, Canadian Living, The Financial Post Magazine, Canadian Business, Cottage Life, Canadian Yachting and Wedding Bells. After moving to British Columbia in 1990, I was fortunate enough to work with some of Western Canada's leading publications, including Western Living, Vancouver Magazine, B.C. Business, Westworld and EAT magazine.
I've also written and edited for corporate and non-profit publications, marketing programs, websites and other online communications. Clients have included 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 Greater Vancouver Regional District, Workers' Compensation Board of BC and BC Hydro. I've been a voting member of the Editors' Association of Canada since 1987 and a member of the Professional Editors' Association of Vancouver Island since 2001.
After many years in urban centres, I'm currently enjoying living a few blocks from the ocean on Vancouver Island with my partner Jeff Bateman, an accomplished writer and journalist whose website you can check out here.
The Many Faces of Editing
There are many different types of editing. These are the ones I offer to my clients:
Substantive or Structural Editing Clarifying and/or reorganizing copy for content and structure. Changes may be suggested to or drafted for the author.
Stylistic Editing Clarifying meaning, eliminating jargon, smoothing language and other non-mechanical line-by-line editing.
Rewriting Creating new copy or parts of the copy on the basis of content and research supplied by an author. May include some research and writing of original material obtained by the editor.
Copy Editing Grammar, spelling, punctuation and other mechanics of style; consistency of mechanics and internal consistency of facts; marking subhead levels; notifying designer of unusual production requirements. May include Canadianizing and metrication, as well as writing or editing captions, credit lines or display copy.
Web Research and Fact Checking Checking accuracy of simple facts and details (such as names, dates, place names, etc.) using Web sources only.