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Thursday, January 31, 2008

Education-Related Freelance Leads for Thursday, January 31, 2008

Write weather lesson plans for a new book to be published
Freelance Writer (ghostwriter for a children's behavior issues book)
Curriculum Writer

Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Building a Portfolio

What is a portfolio?
I belong to a few groups online, and one of the pieces of wisdom that pops up often is that to get freelance jobs, a writer needs a portfolio. Okay, so what exactly is a portfolio? The way I understand it, a writer’s portfolio is a collection of clips designed to showcase the quality and range of the writer’s work. If you can clarify or expound on this definition, please chime in!

How does someone entering the freelance educational writing market compile a portfolio without having landed a freelance job? It’s a bit of a Catch-22. You need clips to get the job, but you need the job to get clips. Oy!

There are ways, I think. I’m going to use myself as an example, since I am just pulling my own portfolio together.

Since I work as an editor on professional development materials, I have the opportunity to use some of that work in my portfolio, for both editing and original writing. That's a good start.

Straight out of the classroom
But what if I had never been an editor? What can I put in my portfolio straight out of the classroom?

Once school year, I wrote a research manual (twenty-three pages) that was printed up for the entire 8th grade. I think a clip from that might serve to show my skills. I also handled the team newsletter for a time. This would serve as an example of my writing and possibly even my design skills. As the NJHS sponsor, I wrote press releases and a brochure. I plan on including those in my clips.

When I first started teaching, I designed and taught week-long summer workshops in computing, both basic (what’s a mouse?) and desktop publishing to teachers. That written curriculum might have served to show my instructional design skills, but who knew to keep them?! (Kick!)

What about college?
I wrote a feature story and a book review for the college newspaper. I think I can include those. I also did proofreading and desktop publishing for a journal at our university press. I have a copy of that journal. Should I include a scan of the cover for proofreading and layout experience? I don’t know about that one. I was also editor of the literary magazine one semester. I was responsible for the whole magazine. I didn’t sleep much that semester, but I did remember to keep a copy.

What can I include?
Will any of this help me land a freelance job? I guess that’s my question. My recent freelancing has been assessment item writing, and I’m not sure I can include any clips of those because of nondisclosure. Sure, when I land a gig, I’ll start putting the recent stuff in the forefront. But until then? Is it a good or bad idea to include older work?

What’s in your portfolio? Can there be too many clips? How do you choose what makes it in?

I think I’ve gone on long enough.

Education-Related Freelance Leads for Wednesday, January 30, 2008

Curriculum Developer (FT - Calif.)

It's quiet...


Monday, January 28, 2008

Focus on Mazer Creative Services

I received an email from someone at Mazer Creative Services. She'd heard about the blog through the "educational publishing" alerts in her gmail (I'm going to have to ask her exactly how that works.) and thought I might like to mention Mazer. I took a look at their site and I certainly do want to mention them. They have openings, but I think they're full-time. She asked that any K-12 freelancers interested in work send their resume to the appropriate editor. Please send me an email for specifics.

This lovely Mazer contact also gave me a few other gems. (I just love helpful people!) She thought we might like to take a look at Academic Benchmarks. Here's the link to the employment page. She also said that the educational publishing community has a strong presence on I joined LinkedIn a little over a week ago and I'm already making strong contacts.

This email came out of the blue and really made my day. I also appreciate all the supportive emails I've received from people who visit the blog. Some are thanks, others are leads, all are very, very welcome. Thanks so much for all of your support.

Happy writing!

Thursday, January 24, 2008

Introducing the Writers - Round 2

It's time to update the links on my Education Writers list. If you'd like me to add your link, please email me with the address and how you want to be listed (eg. Laura Coulter - Assessment writer & copyeditor). Try to make the link go directly to a resume or description of your services. I plan to update the links on Tuesday.


Education-Related Writing Leads for Friday, January 25, 2008

Course Content Editor
Teaching Blog is Seeking Writers
Editor - FT (Thanks, buglady!)
Copyeditors and Proofreaders
Curriculum Writers
High School Chemistry Editors (Thanks, Stephenie!)

Not writing, but still education-related - if you're interested in scoring essays for Pearson, check out the site to see if there's one near you.

CollegeBoard has opportunities for AP Exam Readers, SAT Essay Readers, and workshop consultants, if you've had high school teaching experience.

Good luck!

Wednesday, January 23, 2008

Lack of Education-Related Writing Leads - January 24, 2008

Wow. It sure is quiet out there. This is the second day in a row I've found nothing to post. If any of you come across a lead you think should be here, please send me an email.

And while we're waiting for the leads to pick up, check out Brown Publishing Network, a development house for Pre-K-12. Freelance information is on the Contact Us page.

Words and Numbers is another development house to get to know. Check out the careers page. Their website is promoting The Educational Publishing Academy starting Spring 2008.


Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Positive response from publisher

Here's a quick bit of encouraging news. I received a very positive response from Cengage when I told them about this blog and invited them to visit. They were in my very first post.


Monday, January 21, 2008

Education-Related Freelance Leads for Tuesday, January 22, 2008

Contract Assessment Writers

It was a quiet day.

Good luck!

Who writes all those leveled readers?

The company I work for publishes textbooks and supplementals with lots and lots of leveled readers. I can walk into a room and be surrounded by a few hundred little books that someone had to write. I don't hear huge discussions on freelancers, only the occasional "I need a proofreader. Someone good. Someone fast. Please! Does anyone have any proofreaders I can contact?" wafting by my cube. (Okay, that's only happened once, but yes, as a matter of fact I did have some proofreading contacts.)

I work in a completely different department than those who produce those little books. So I pop my head over the cube and ask, "Where does the manuscript come from?"

"From the vendor," comes the reply.

I walk around the cube wall, eyebrows raised. "Vendor?"

"Sure," the voice continues. "We don't write anything here. It's all vendors like..." The voice went on to name a few, including spellings and pronunciations. Very helpful, that voice. It's amazing what you can find out if you just ask.

So, in the interest of learning more. I will send you to a couple of articles I read recently on working for hire. The Work-for-hire question at The Writing for Children Resource Site discusses the pros and cons of write-for-hire work. And Jenna Glatzer talks about writing for hire in Book Packaging: Under-explored Terrain For Freelancers. She mentions some book packagers as a jumping off point, as well. I believe those 'vendors' in my story might also be known as book packagers.

And to start us down that road, check out Tighe (pronounced Tie) Publishing Services, Inc. (TPS), a full-service educational development house.

Have you worked with an educational development house? If so, can you tell us about your experience?


Education-Related Freelance Leads for Monday, January 21, 2008

Chemistry Writer Online High School Course
PUBLISHING EDITOR NEEDED ASAP! - D (Social studies textbook)
CALLING ALL EXPERIENCED EDITORS! - Needed right away! (It looks like the same company as above.)
teachers, educational writers--geometry/pre-algebra writing (posted in several cities)
Academic Copyeditor Needed
Curriculum writers for Elementary Grades (dublin / pleasanton / livermore) (Telecommute ok)
instructional designer/curriculum designer
Course Writers - ARRT & Liberal Arts
Writer Remote FT

Good luck,

Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Education-Related Freelance Leads for Wednesday, January 16, 2008

Temporary Copy Editor
Copy Editing and Proofing
Software Editor - Temporary 4-6 months (education-related)
Editor: Language Arts Background (FT)
Call for submission - Writers for Children's books (a little different, but I thought some of you might be interested)
Curriculum Upgrades Needed (Philadelphia)
Math and Science Test Prep Writer (I missed this one earlier, but the deadline isn't until Jan 25th.)
ExploreLearning needs Curriculum Writer (Science) and Curriculum and Content Development (math/science preferred)

Good luck!

Quick Check-Up on Writer Links

Mara made a comment on the writer links round 1 post about making the writer links more descriptive. Please take a minute to read and comment. For those of you who sent me links in Round 1, please take a look at the links on the right and let me know if you'd like your descriptor to be a little more... well, descriptive. Also, check the link and let me know if that one is okay. I will adjust as necessary.

I've emailed the publishers mentioned on this blog so far inviting them to visit. If you get a response or job from these leads, please share the good news with us.

And... I figured out how to put my email address on my profile (Ta da!). So you can email me directly now.

Happy writing,

Education-Related Freelance Leads for Tuesday, January 15, 2008

Assessment/Testing Freelance Editor Needed Now
Managing Editor, Children's Web Portal (FT)
High School Flashcard Writer or Editor
Math Content Writer (several education-related writing, editing, and proofing opportunities, some freelance)

Good luck!

Monday, January 14, 2008

Introducing the Writers - Round 1

Thanks to all of you for sending me links to your pages. No, you weren't too late for the party. I'm a little late in posting. There are still plenty of cookies to around. Grab some punch, too, and check out some of the pages of other education writers. It's good to have resources.

Stephanie at
Dorit at and
Laura at and
Mara at
Mindy at
Vijaya at
Cassandra at
Evelyn at
Diane at
Angela at

I will make these a permanent part of this blog in the Education Writers list of links.

If you sent me a request to be on this list, but don't see yours here, I had trouble with one link and another had the request, but no address. Please resend the info and I'll post again next week.

I am lining up a couple of interviews for this blog aimed at how to break into writing for the education market. For now I need to say the the Yahoo group NFforkids is a fantastic resource.


Education-Related Freelance Leads for Monday, January 14, 2008

e-Learning Content Editors
American Educator accepting submissions
ESL/ELL/ELT Writers and Editors Needed for an Upcoming Project
New York State Education Department needs item writers

Good luck!

Thursday, January 10, 2008

Call for links

I'd like to create a list of links to freelance writers who write, excusively or occasionally, for the education market. If you'd like to be included in this list, please email me with a link to your site or blog. I would like to post the list by the end of Sunday.


OTTN Publishing

OTTN Publishing is not strictly for the education market, however they started out publishing nonfiction for young readers and have morphed from there, so I believe the are worth mentioning on this blog. They currently provide services as a development house and do work with freelance writers on certain projects.


Education-Related Freelance Leads for Friday, January 11, 2008

CALLING ALL EXPERIENCED EDITORS! - Needed right away! (Same company as previous entry)
Correlations Specialist (on-site)
Correlations Specialist - Softside (same as above - different location)
Copy Editor/Proofreader

Good luck!

McGraw-Hill Education Cutting 300+ Jobs - What is the Impact for Freelancers?

In a Publisher's Weekly article yesterday, I read about McGraw-Hill Education cutting back over 300 jobs. This raised a question for me. When an education publishing company cuts that many jobs, do they also cut back on freelancers, or does their need for freelancers increase to make up for the loss of resources in-house? I'd really like to hear from people who have experience with this. Other than the tangle of who's-the-editor-now?, is this a good thing for freelancers, or a bad thing?


Tuesday, January 8, 2008

Educational Publisher - Crystal Springs Books

Today's highlight is an educational material publisher called Crystal Springs Books. This publisher focuses on material that teachers can use in the classroom. I know that most former teachers have boxes of material they've created over the years. It's like amputation to throw that material out when you are done in the classroom. Perhaps they are actually a gold mine. You can check out the writer's guidelines and see if it might work for you.


Education-Related Freelance Leads for Wednesday, January 9, 2008

Scholarship Blogger
Academic Publishing Internship (Union Square)
RTN Curriculum Developer (on-site short term)
Course Writer: Web-based Training (financial district)
High School Curriculum Writers

Some of these aren't freelancing, but I thought there would be some interested for breaking into the education market from any direction. I'm still tweaking this blog. Let me know if the full-time or on-site jobs are too distracting.

Good luck,

Monday, January 7, 2008

Education-Related Freelance Leads for Tuesday, January 8, 2008

History Editor Needed for Multimedia Project
Education Writer (Chelsea)

Deb Ng has an interesting entry for a High School Flashcard Writer or Editor.

Good luck,

Education-Related Freelance Leads for Monday, January 7, 2008

I've put together a small list of writing and copy editing leads that deal with either educational books or require an education background.

ESL/ELL/ELT Writers and Editors Needed for an Upcoming Project
Copy Editor
Editor- Language Arts Background
Editors Needed for Humanities Reference Books
Wanted: English, Psychology, History and other Liberal Arts Majors
Staff Writer for Education Company
Editors (Union Square)

Please drop me a note if any of these work out for you. I'd love to hear about it.


Reviewing Manuscripts

One of the things I learned working for an educational publisher was that the publisher will send out manuscripts for review to people they consider experts.

The department I work in develops products for educator professional development. When a manuscript is in pretty good shape, a supervising editor will contact people to see if they’d be interested in reviewing the manuscript and providing specific feedback. This is a paid review. If they agree, the manuscript goes out to them with instructions on what kind of feedback is needed and a deadline.

Since we work with professional development, the department keeps an eye out for potential reviewers anytime they go to a conference or hear about a good workshop that someone else attended.

That’s not the only way publishers find reviewers, though. Free Spirit Publishing posts their need for manuscript reviewers on their employment page. They also post freelance information. I included them here today because they specifically state the need for educators in the Manuscript Reviewers section.

Happy writing,

UPDATE: The call for manuscript reviewers has been removed from the employment page. If anyone was able to talk with them, perhaps you can let us know what happened. - Laura

Sunday, January 6, 2008

Focusing on the Education Market

I’ve decided to focus this blog on writing for the educational market. I haven’t seen anything out there that fills that need. I’ve looked because I’ve needed it. So I will put what I know and what I learn as I go. Hopefully, some of you will be able to add needed information through your comments.

I currently work at an educational publisher and have had some experience working with freelance writers from the other side of the desk. I will do my best to take advantage of my resources there.

As a start, I will post the freelancing link to Cengage Learning, formerly Thomson Learning. If you're looking for the freelancing info from the main page, look to the bottom for careers at Cengage.

I've also got a couple of places I visit at least once a week for freelance jobs that are not necessarily for the education market. I learn a lot about freelance writing from Deborah Ng and get great sources from Anne Wayman.

That's all I have time for today. I will post again soon. Please post comments if I've erred or you have information to add.