If you love reading and have a good eye for detail and correcting errors, you may be able to build a successful career as a freelance copy editor.
Freelance copy editors must be meticulous and dedicated in order to support their team in creating perfect content. But first, it is crucial to understand the key roles of freelance copy editing jobs before you jump on the bandwagon.
In this post, we’ll describe how a freelance copy editor works and the tips and tricks on how to become a freelance copy editor.
So let’s dive in.
What Is a Freelance Copy Editor?
Freelance copy editors are in charge of proofreading various types of content and verifying grammar, spelling, mistakes, repeated sentences, inconsistencies, missing information, missing words, and more.
Their responsibility is to maintain a high-quality standard in all writing generated by an organization to ensure that the written material efficiently expresses an idea.
They ensure that the content is perfect while turning it into a final finished piece that’s all set to be published.
Does that description resonate with you? Or are you already irritated with the notion of combing through manuscripts for the rest of your lives?
If you’re already bored, freelance copy editing jobs might probably not be for you, but if you believe you have the skill, carry on!
What Does a Freelance Copy Editor Do?
Freelance copy editors scan through the written content for style and organization. They make slight adjustments themselves like putting in commas or fixing typos.
For bigger errors like organization, emphasis, or tone, freelance copy editors offer thorough feedback to the original writer to make considerable tweaks.
Other roles in a freelance copy editing job include:
- Verifying sources and adding links
- Composing titles and subtitles
- Propose improvements for the future
- Training writers on the style guide
- Page design and formatting adjustment
How Much Do Freelance Copy Editors Make?
Payscale presents a summary of the freelance copy editor salaries according to their level of expertise.
- An entry-level freelance copy editor with 1-year experience or less may earn a total of $39,068.
- A beginner freelance copy editor with 1-4 years of experience may earn a total of $44,718.
- An intermediate freelance copy editor with 5-9 years of experience may earn a total of $52,523.
- An experienced freelance copy editor with 10-19 years of experience may earn a total of $58,955.
Become a Freelance Copy Editor in 5 Easy Steps
To become a freelance copy editor, draw on these steps as a guide to pull your freelancing career off the ground.
- Magnify Your Skills
In the first place, you will need a good understanding of the required skills if you want to succeed as a freelance copy editor.
It includes boosting your knowledge of grammar and spelling, text organization, tone and style, learning relevant style guides, and being able to promptly identify erroneous or murky sentences.
2. Earn A College Degree
Employers generally seek copy editors with an English degree or a similar subject to assure that they get hands-on people who are well-versed in writing and basic grammar rules.
A few employers may also agree to take an associate’s degree or comparable experience, but a bachelor’s degree may be considered a typical requirement for most freelance copy editing jobs.
What you have to do is to select courses to enhance your technical writing and editing abilities, for example:
- Editing fundamentals
- Corporate communication
- Literary journalism
- Public relations
3. Make a Habit of Reading and Writing Regularly
The greatest method to brush up on your abilities as a freelance copy editor is to practice consistently by reading and writing.
Read the content in your favorite niches to immerse yourself in the industry’s best practices and find out typical flow and readability problems within the texts.
Moreover, writing is a bonus. Although you won’t have to write content by yourself, it will surely help you develop into a better freelance copy editor.
Practicing writing may provide you with an insight into the writing process so that you can provide better suggestions and helpful modifications.
4. Create an Appealing Portfolio
Seek small freelance editing tasks that you may utilize to improve your competencies and establish an editing portfolio.
You can sign up to online freelance marketplaces to give a kick start to your editing projects and gather a few samples for your portfolio.
New clients would, of course, be searching for high-quality editing work samples, and typos in your portfolio would be a big turnoff for prospective clients.
Use your portfolio to demonstrate your capacity to simplify and enhance the low-quality text. Enter either a before and after version of your projects to demonstrate your editing skills.
5. Go Full-Time
To become a successful freelance copy editor, any freelancer’s dream would be to quit their day job and work full-time.
However, you’ll only be able to do this once you’ve developed a comfortable standard of freelancing experience and a steady stream of jobs.
The key is to put more time and effort into your freelancing editing career and stay up to date with the latest trends, software, and equipment to be on top of the game.
The Wrap Up
You must be thinking that becoming an expert freelance copyeditor is no easy feat, but it’s not impossible anyhow.
If you show the right passion, commitment, and attention to detail, you’re sure to succeed as a freelance copy editor. Here’s wishing you luck!