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Editor Profiles: Stephen (Working from Home During COVID-19)

What do you do when a global pandemic means your usual work dries up? One option is to try freelance proofreading. It has worked for Stephen, an actor and Proofreading Academy graduate. Here, we look at how proofreading is helping him keep earning through COVID-19.

Hi, Stephen! What made you consider Proofreading Academy?

As an actor, my industry has suffered badly from the effects of COVID-19 and the restrictions this has placed on filming and performances. Work opportunities have been almost non-existent. As such, I was looking for extra work I could do from home.

A friend suggested I try proofreading and I researched various companies. Proofreading Academy stood out as the most complete course and best value for money. And the potential for guaranteed work at the end was also a big selling point.

A head shot of Stephen.

What were you doing before you started the course?

I have just moved into my first home! I had just finished a recent project for TV and was in the processes of moving when I began to research the proofreading courses available.

Was there anything particularly challenging in the course for you?

The vast array of terminology associated with proofreading and editing was quite a shock. Thankfully, the course is very helpful and explains everything clearly.

How have you found the transition to working as a freelance proofreader?

I was lucky in that I started with Proofed just before their busy period began. This meant there was a large amount of work available straight away, which helped me hit the ground running.

How has life changed for you now as a freelance proofreader?

I’ve been self-employed since 2016, so it’s fairly normal for me in some ways. I now have a lot of friends asking me to “check something quickly,” though, which never used to happen!

What is your day-to-day work like? And where do you work?

It varies each day depending on what other projects I have going on, but I try to check in with Proofed at least twice a day. Finding a routine and being strict with that is very important.

As for where I work, I have a home office which I use for most of my proofreading. However, if the document is lengthy, I do tend to wander as I can’t sit in one place for too long!

What do you do when you aren’t proofreading?

I spend a lot of my free time preparing various projects for when my (other) work returns after the current COVID-19 induced lull. Things are starting to pick up, so I remain optimistic that the situation will improve moving into the new year. I’m also in the process of establishing a school program to make puppetry more accessible to people of a young age.

What has been the single best benefit of having done the course?

During lockdown, being able to work from home has been a massive bonus. This would be great even in normal times, but it has been especially helpful during the uncertainty of 2020!

Was the course good value for money?

Yes, I’ve been very happy with the return.

Do you have a website you want to share with our readers?

You can find my Spotlight profile here!

Becoming A Proofreader

Being able to work from home is increasingly important for many people. And there are few simpler ways to get started in a freelance career than our Becoming A Proofreader course. To find out how you can start working from home as a proofreader, sign up for a free trial today.

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  1. Wondering what the busy period is for proofreaders is that was alluded to in Stephen’s article?
    Another nagging question is how to handle paying taxes in the United States as a freelancer.

    1. Hi, Deborah. The busy period that Stephen alludes to here was a period last year at the start of the pandemic when Proofed had an influx of new editors due to an increased demand for remote work. This has settled down now and there is a steady stream of work all year round for Proofed editors.
      If you’re worried about paying taxes, we’d recommend speaking to an accountant who can advise on this.
      Hope this helps!

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