Wednesday, June 8, 2011

Eternal Possibility, Part III: Editing and Proofreading

Eternal Possibility: living knowing that all things are possible involves redefining how I relate to my world.

When I left the practice of law in 2008, I did not expect to practice law again, however, I did expect that the skills I learned as an attorney would, in time, serve me in another way. One skill I developed in law school, practiced as an appellate attorney, and continue to enjoy is editing/proofreading. I love the power word choice and placement give an author to convey their thoughts to another through time and space. And I love knowing that my ability to spot errors will lead a reader to greater enjoyment as the words flow effortlessly across the page.

For the past six weeks, I have spent considerable time editing/proofreading for Concord Free Press, a non-profit alternative publisher. I was first introduced to CFP in June 2009 when I attended a book release party for CFP's second title, Push Comes To Shove, by Wesley Brown. Before the book reading, Editor-in-Chief and founder, Stona Fitch explained CFP's concept: Generosity in Publishing. Free books, written by well known authors, that raise money for a charity or cause of the reader's choice. I was hooked. Here was a group of writers who recognized publishing as a vehicle to spread good will and made it happen. The beauty of the CFP concept is that the authors retain the publishing rights, so the books are often published and sold through mainstream outlets, following the CFP release, while the CFP copies continue to circulate and raise money for those in need. The ability to retain the publishing rights attracts well known authors to CFP. In turn, the authors' prior work creates a reader-base eager to donate in exchange for the opportunity to read their favored author's new release. Every person involved benefits. Simply brilliant. I couldn't wait to get involved.

I immediately volunteered to edit/proofread for CFP and in Fall 2009 I did a final proofread/edit of CFP's third title, The Next Queen of Heaven, written by Gregory Maguire. I loved every minute of it. Since then, I have worked with CFP on three hard copy books and, most recently, on five e-books newly released for concord e-press. The proceeds of the e-books are split equally between the author and CFP, which will make CFP viable for years to come.

To date, CFP readers have donated over $215,000 to causes worldwide that are as varied as giving 7 pounds (approximately $11.00) to a homeless person in the U.K. to donating $1,000 to the Red Cross. My work with CFP has been infinitely rewarding: I love reviewing the work of talented authors knowing that I am part of an organization that is making a difference in the world; and, I love that I have found a creative way to use the editing/proofreading skills I developed as an attorney in service of the greater good.

If you are interested in learning more about CFP, you can check out the site at:  To visit concord e-press, click here: