Presenters: Cathy Robertson, Carrie Milton and Ricky Woods
Very often, being an editor is something that happens sometime after you have completed your studies or followed a career in something completely different. During the time that you have been out of editing action, things have changed in the world of language, especially in the Digital Age. When starting out as an editor in this highly competitive field, you may not realise what a lonely job it is, despite having access to a digital platform. You are not in an office where a quick question may be answered by a colleague or where you, new to the field, may be interned to reach a level of proficiency where you are confident to market yourself and build up a client base. You cannot learn through observation as you are very much on your own. You have no way of practising the art of editing under the watchful eye of someone who has the experience and the time to guide you through the process.
No matter what your genre of editing, a comforting solution to all these challenges is to do a mentorship with a professional association such as PEG. It does not matter what your background is; all you need to help you through a mentorship is a love of language, a strong urge to correct sloppy expression (especially in the field of academic editing) and someone to whom you can raise questions that come up along the way. Although there are many fields in which you can do a mentorship, this presentation will focus on a mentorship in academic editing, since that is the forte of the presenters. By means of a short presentation, a PEG academic mentorship will be defined and the benefits of signing up for a mentorship will be explored and then expanded on by means of interviews with two members of PEG who have been mentored successfully.
In this presentation, Cathy, in her role as mentor, with the help and support of two mentees who have been successfully mentored through academic editing, intend showcasing the benefits of doing a mentorship with PEG in preparation for ‘going it alone’ in the field of academic editing.
Cathy has mentored six PEG mentees and is busy with her seventh. After teaching languages at school level, she lectured English at a teachers’ training college and then became involved with skills development at a TVET college. She therefore has a strong background of public–private partnerships and assessment and moderation practices. These skills have stood her in good stead at PEG, where she sets and marks the accreditation test.
Carrie is a veterinarian and language practitioner. After completing her Bachelor of Veterinary Science and working with a variety of animals for a number of years, she reawakened her love for the written word. She is a PEG Accredited Text Editor and has tried her hand at everything from theses to fiction.
Ricky is a retired teacher of English (how does one retire from teaching English?). The past ten years or so have seen her focus more deliberately on editing, through taking copy-editing courses run by UCT and UP in addition to numerous PEG webinars. A PEG Accredited Text Editor, she works mostly in the area of academic editing but has dipped her pen into some non-fiction and even fiction.