Call the midwife

When I tell people that I’m a freelance writer and editor, I’m often met with a quizzical expression. Sometimes I get a polite smile that masks the question; sometimes a braver soul will ask what that is or why I do what I do.

Here’s why.

I spent many years working in public relations and media relations. I’ve also worked as a freelance reporter and writer. I’ve written and edited news briefs, book-length fiction and nonfiction and everything in between: news articles, press releases, press kits, marketing materials, newsletters, annual reports, brochures, web content, blogs, academic papers and more. For eight years I also edited and published a monthly community newspaper.

It took me a long time to realize it, but what I have learned about myself from all of those experiences is how much I love storytelling.

I firmly believe that everyone has a story, and I have found my passion in helping individuals and organizations tell their stories. One of my regular clients, the director of a small nonprofit organization, tells me that she really appreciates my ability to channel the organization’s voice.

Another client handed me his first manuscript with great trepidation; he hadn’t shared his novel-in-progress with anyone else. When he received my sample edit, he said happily, “It’s still my voice. It’s just better!” And now we’re working on his third book.

Lately I’ve been working with authors seeking to self-publish. I provide them with editing services (anything from developmental editing to proofreading, depending on the project), book design, and coaching throughout the publishing process. There’s nothing like the look on a first-time author’s face upon seeing his or her words in print. I tell my clients to think of me as the midwife, helping them to bring their project into the world.

What’s your story? Are you ready to share it? I hope you’ll think about calling the midwife.