What It Is (posts below left; rate sheet, client list, other stuff below right)

My name is Bob Land. I am a full-time freelance editor and proofreader, and occasional indexer. This blog is my website.

You'll find my rate sheet and client list here, as well as musings on the life of a freelancer; editing, proofreading, and indexing concerns and issues; my ongoing battles with books and production; and the occasional personal revelation.

Feel free to contact me directly with additional questions: landondemand@gmail.com.

Thanks for visiting. Leave me a comment. Come back often.

Friday, November 16, 2018

Sample Response to Author for Indexing Query

Just sent this letter to an author looking for an indexer. I'd asked for a few sample manuscript chapters since the pages weren't ready yet. I'm also printing it here so that I can use it as boilerplate, not that I'll remember it. I'm so geeked up about going to Denver tomorrow, I'm still working on what should have been finished seven hours ago. Gonna be the usual long night before travel. "Live and don't learn, that's us" (Watterson). I wonder if AAR has ever done a Calvin and Hobbes session. The question should be, "How many?"

Thanks very much, J——. Even though I'm a known quantity to —— Press, I understand their and your stance perfectly.

As far as the prospectus, my first reaction as an indexer is, If I had this before starting any book, my life would be immeasurably easier. I'm just sitting here shaking my head at the thought. I might ask authors or presses for it in the future, and if that's the case, I've gotten my money's worth out of this correspondence already. 

All that notwithstanding, your material has made it with room to spare under my psychic limbo bar. If the job were to come my way and came with the usual 6x9" or 6x9.25" trim size, the rate would be $5 per indexable page, which is generally from the first page of the introduction through the end of the last chapter, inclusive. Add on to that pages for any indexable front matter (maybe a preface, not foreword or acknowledgments) and back matter (notes, not bibliography or appendices [except in the most general of fashion]). For a book around 90K words, maybe 230 pages or so? Of that, usually about 210-15 would be indexable.

So if it's the usual academic trim size, entirely depending on the final page count of indexable material, probably in the $1075 range, give or take. If you're associated with an institution that might be paying for the work, I'd ask to start any necessary payment paperwork (registering as a vendor, submitting a W9) at the beginning of the job. I've found that being a first-time payee can take an inordinately long time, and I like to grease the skids. If paying on your own, I accept checks or—for the more adventuresome or 21st-century, which isn't me—PayPal.

Let me know whatever you decide. I'd like to work with you and will add you to my schedule if that's your call.


And if you're wondering about that rather formal head, I'm putting some knowledge to work

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