How to Hire
a Freelance Copyeditor


Compiled by Sara Saylor, University Writing Center, UT Austin.
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Where to Start

  • If you’re a student, ask your professor or faculty supervisors for their permission to hire a copy-editor. UT has no official policies against hiring editors, but individual faculty members may object to this practice. Sec. 11-402. Academic Dishonesty of UT’s Institutional Rules does not mention copy-editing as a prohibited conduct. However, if your supervisor tells you not to use an editor and you hire one anyway, then this would be a violation of “failing to comply with instructions” (11-402(c)(2)). So, the best practice is to make sure your supervisor is OK with you hiring a copy-editor.
  • Read Wendy Laura Belcher’s overview, How to Hire and Work with an Academic Copyeditor.
  • Send query emails early in your writing process, even before your project is ready to review. Ask editors about rates, time frames, and options for reviewing your chapters one at a time.

Standard Editorial Rates

“Rates vary considerably depending on the nature of the work, the time frame of the assignment, the degree of special expertise required, and other factors. The industry standard for a manuscript page… is 250 words.” (source)

  • Basic copyediting: 5-10 ms pgs/hr, $30-40/hr
  • Heavy copyediting: 2–5 ms pgs/hr, $40–50/hr
  • Developmental editing: 1–5 pgs/hr, $45–55/hr
  • Substantive or line editing: 1–6 ms pgs/hr, $40–60/hr
  • Proofreading: 9-13 ms pgs/hr, $30-35/hr
  • Translating: 300-500 wds/hr, $40-50/hr
  • “The average rate at which copyeditors edit is 4 pages (or 1,000 words) per hour.”
  • “First, review the manuscript… If your footnotes have never been spell-checked, spell-check them. If your references are not standardized, fix them…. Once you have fixed what you can, identify exactly how many pages are in your manuscript (don’t guess, divide the total electronic word count by 250 words). Divide this figure by 4 (pages an hour) to arrive at the likely total cost of copyediting.”
  • 200-page dissertation = 50 hours x $30 = $1500.

Freelance Editors

Note: These editors are not affiliated with the UWC, and we are not endorsing them by including their contact information. If you are a freelance copy-editor and would like to submit or update your information on this page, please contact uwc@utexas.edu.


Melanie Haupt

Education
PhD in English, UT Austin; MA in English, University of Colorado Boulder; BA in English, UT Austin.


Experience
I earned my PhD in English at the University of Texas at Austin, where I taught literature and rhetoric and writing classes from 2005–2012. I have taught rhetoric and composition, American Studies, and Capstone at St. Edward’s University. I have extensive experience with proofreading, copyediting, and project editing and can help you get your college application letter, thesis, dissertation, monograph, and manuscript ready for submission.

Amy Vidor

Education
PhD in Comparative Literature, UT Austin; MA in History and Literature, Columbia University; BAs in English and French with Minor in Art History, University of Southern California


Experience
5+ years of editing experience. Prior work in: English literature and language, French literature and language, history and social sciences, specializing in adherence to style guides, grammar, and maintaining a consistent voice.

Jaime Deblanc-Knowles

Education
MA in Creative Writing, UT Austin; BA in English and History, Tulane University


Experience
I’m a professional freelance editor who works with clients to prepare dissertations, book-length manuscripts, and white papers for publication. I’m a former copy editor/fact-checker for The Austin Chronicle, fiction editor for Bat City Review, and copy editor for E Magazine. I offer thorough, precise, and timely editing services. Rates depend on project complexity and turnaround time. For a personalized quote, please email me with a description of your project.

Caroline Barta

Education
PhD in English Literature, University of Texas (2020); MA in English Literature, Boston College; BA in Great Texts and Classics, Baylor University.


Experience
Taught and edited English literature and writing to high school, college, and graduate-level students for 7+ years. Worked in academic marketing and publishing—4+ years. Available for copywriting, copyediting, style guide help, and proofreading. Expert in assisting non-native English speakers find fluency and greater ease with their writing. Specialist with application essays, dissertations, book chapters, journal articles, and academic job materials. Contact me for a quote.

Lynn Cowles

  • cowles5966@gmail.com

Education
PhD and MA in English, UT Austin; BA in English, Virginia Commonwealth University


Experience
Fifteen years of writing coaching and thousands of pages edited for diverse writers and projects! I specialize in:
• Academics: scholarly publications, dissertations, curricula;
• Businesses: internal and external communications; web/social media content;
• Professionals: books, industry pieces; and
• Nonprofits: grants, reports, etc.
Experience includes working for academic journals, web development offices, and popular and academic publishers. Writing partnerships are unique—let’s see what ours looks like together! Please email with project details for pricing.

Stephen Dadugblor

  • steve.dadugblor@utexas.edu

Education
PhD Candidate, English (Rhetoric), UT Austin; MA, Michigan Technological University


Experience
I am a PhD candidate in English and an Assistant Instructor in UT’s Department of Rhetoric and Writing. I have considerable experience in the editing and proofreading of scholarly articles, theses, and dissertations across multiple fields, including the humanities, social sciences, and engineering. I bring high levels of precision, promptness, attention to detail, and over seven years of editorial experience to your work.

Helen Novielli

  • helen@personalproofreading.com

Education
MA, Texas Woman’s University


Experience
I have over seven years’ experience as a proofreader/editor, and 15 years’ experience with editing, proofreading, and content creation in a business setting. My areas of expertise include Social Sciences, Humanities, Business, and Education. Focus is placed on spelling, grammar, punctuation, and accuracy of vocabulary. Suggestions are made on style, sentence construction and flow, and overall readability. I’ve worked with many ESL students and am always happy to work with more!

Shilpa Bakre

  • sbakre@gmail.com

Education
BJ (Bachelor’s of Journalism) and MPAff (Master’s in Public Affairs) – University of Texas at Austin


Experience
Two decades of communications, writing, and editing for a variety of clients and projects in sports, arts, tourism and now higher education at UT.
Experienced editor in:
· Academics: dissertations, etc.
· Organizations: Internal/external communication, email, web & social content
· Professionals: books, newsletters
My tenure includes: Director of Media & PR for a top-five U.S. Olympic sport, marketing a museum, winning an Emmy award for producing/writing. I am also a published author. Please email with project details for pricing. I look forward to working with you!

Alexis Stratton

Education
MFA in Creative Writing, University of South Carolina; Graduate Certificate in Women’s and Gender Studies, University of South Carolina; BA in English, University of South Carolina


Experience
With 12 years of experience as a professional academic editor, I’ve edited numerous dissertations, master’s theses, and journal articles for a variety of clients, including professors, researchers, and graduate students. I’m familiar with APA, Chicago, and MLA styles, though I can adapt to other styles as well. Recent editing projects include book- and article-length works in sociology, anthropology, political science, linguistics, comparative literature, art education, gender studies, and English literature.

Joanna Thaler

  • joanna.thaler@gmail.com

Education
PhD in English, UT Austin


Experience
Joanna earned her PhD in English Literature from UT-Austin in 2016. Since graduating, she has been working as a professional freelance editor and has edited dissertations, book manuscripts, short stories, and other long-form documents in addition to job and program application materials such as resumes, cover letters, and personal essays. She also works full time as a Course Coordinator for Rhetoric in UT’s Office of Strategy and Policy, coaching others on writing and research.

Lauren Issen

  • laura.issen@gmail.com

Education
Ph.D. in English in 2000 from UT Austin
B.A. in English with Honors in 1993 from UT Austin


Experience
I earned my Ph.D. in English from UT Austin in 2000. I have been editing a wide range of documents for over 20 years, including but not limited to academic articles, theses, dissertations, curricula, textbook copy, resumes, cover letters, and marketing copy. I have also been teaching college level courses as well as tutoring students and professionals for the same number of years. See my extended profile and client reviews at: http://austin.universitytutor.com/tutors/232306