Following on from my previous post about patience, I think somebody trying to get into the crowded world of editing and proofreading needs to be persistent. All the training that one can do is all very good (and essential), but if you lack persistence, then it could all be for nothing.
As a newbie into the industry, I’m still learning as I try to get my foot (or at least my little toe) on the first rung of the editing and proofreading ladder. I assume there is still a ladder, isn’t there? Maybe I didn’t get the memo…
Part of this learning is really using all of the facilities and resources that are there in front of you. I’m still learning things about the SfEP website. For one, the forums are an unbelievable source of advice and recommendations. I’ve only recently just joined the forums, but have already found that it’s a welcoming place with lots of very experienced professionals willing to give advice.
Another point I’ve noticed about the SfEP website is that they produce short guides for freelancers like us. I’ve just purchased ‘Marketing Yourself’, ‘Going Solo’ and ‘Editor and Client relationships’, and having just a brief look through them, they are going to be invaluable and a great investment at a cheap price.
In the ‘Marketing Yourself’ guide, I’ve already found advice that I’d never even thought of. Advertising myself on sites such as yell.com, hotfrog.co.uk and thomsonlocal.com. This has now been rectified, and I’ll see if I get any hits from that.
Update on freelance work sites
I’m still on Upwork and Freelancer. At the moment, I seem to be getting more suitable jobs and most connections through Upwork. The tablet app is fairly user-friendly, but the desktop page is much easier to use. It’s a very easy process, however, I have found that occasionally in the ‘job feed’, I see jobs that aren’t connected to my skill set. On this site, I also want to avoid seeing jobs posted by students, wanting people to write their essays or reports for them. For one thing, it’s cheating, and second, I don’t want to be involved in that sort of business.
Freelancer is a bit of a gamble, or so I’m finding. The layout isn’t so friendly, and I don’t think it’s used as much as Upwork, and therefore I’m not getting anything from it. However, I keep looking but continue feeling a little down while doing it on this site. Don’t get me started on People Per Hour.
Although I will. I’m not very impressed with it. I don’t think I’ve had anything useful come from it, and so I wonder why I’m on there. I suppose it had been suggested that I should try it, but for me, it doesn’t seem to be working. There are a few things I don’t really get about the site. Hourlies, for one. I understand the concept, but I don’t think it works. Well, it’s not working for me.
Considering the Indies
As well as these websites, of course, I have contacted the kinds of publishers who produce the sort of work I’m interested in. This being major ELT publishers in the main. The one thing that I’m considering is contacting the indie publishers. I follow a lot of them on Twitter, but again, similar to the publishers I’ve already contacted, how well would they respond to a freelancer contacting them, asking to be put on their freelancer database? But then, you never know. It could be worth it. There are so many out there, and it will be a long slog; trying to personalise each email to every individual indie publisher. However, if you want the work, this is something that you have to be prepared to do.
That’s all for now. I think I need to go and create some individual emails to send out to particular indie publishers.