What a Difference a Year Makes

becoming a freelance editorIn May of 2012, I made a decision I’d been contemplating for some time: I hung out my shingle as a full-time freelance editor and writer.

I had been working as a senior editor at a small traditional publisher. I was very excited about how different my working life would be as a freelancer. But giving up that steady paycheck—well, that was a horse of a different color, as they say.

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My passion was working with writers and their words, and sadly, the economics of traditional publishing had caused my job to morph into something that left me little time to do that. My days were spent on so many things other than editing, and I grew more and more frustrated.

I finally realized that if things were going to change, I would have to be the one to change them.

So I did, and I’ve never looked back. Was it scary? Yes, it was—and it still is. But in hindsight, I only have one regret: I wish I’d done it sooner. Becoming a freelance editor and writer is one of the best decisions I’ve ever made.

Today, I have the freedom to work on projects that I’m excited about. I have the variety of working with writers on their novels, their memoirs, their self-help books, their blog posts, their articles for magazines and websites. I even had the opportunity to write a comedic speech, which was a great challenge but SO much fun! Every day I have the opportunity to work with authors who are among the most dedicated and creative people I’ve ever met. And the best part is that I can now call those people my friends.

It’s been a year since I decided to start Change It Up Editing and Writing Services, and it’s been a fantastic twelve months. Thank you to all the writers who trusted me with their amazing words, and thanks to all of YOU who read this blog. I never dreamed I’d have so much FUN!


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Candace Johnson is a professional freelance editor, proofreader, writer, ghostwriter, and writing coach who has worked with traditional publishers, self-published authors, and independent book packagers on nonfiction subjects ranging from memoirs to alternative medical treatments to self-help, and on fiction ranging from romance to paranormal. As an editorial specialist, Candace is passionate about offering her clients the opportunity to take their work to the next level. She believes in maintaining an author’s unique voice while helping him or her create and polish every sentence to make it the best it can be.

20 thoughts on “What a Difference a Year Makes”

  1. Great post, Candace. So happy you have been happy with your choice and your first year doing things a new way – congratulations on your anniversary!

  2. That’s an awesome story and inspiring to someone who is slowly being marginalized by automation. From my naive perspective, the current state of self-publishing suggests a greater need than ever for freelance editors.

    1. Thanks for your thoughtful comment, Eric. The slow marginalization of people in every industry seems to come with the “progress” society is making, so it’s imperative for all of us to find the things that feed our souls. I know how lucky I am to be positioned where I am at this exciting time in the publishing world.

      1. It’s not luck, it’s smarts! I’m opting for the so-called “safety” of the corporate world, but the writing is on the wall (pun intended) with more and more computer-generated text showing up in reports and proposals and so forth.

  3. You are and will no doubt continue to be, an inspiration to others. Loved reading your story. I took a similar step ten years ago and have never looked back. It’s hard work and frustrating at times but I wouldn’t trade it for the world. The writing/publishing scene was quite different then than it is now. Riding out the change has left my head spinning, but I think things are beginning to sort themselves out. You’ve hopped on the wagon at a good time!

    1. Thanks for the encouraging words, Dorothy. As you wrote, “It’s hard work and frustrating at times but I wouldn’t trade it for the world.” I love what I do–and I don’t think it gets any better than that.

  4. I’ll echo the others and say how inspirational it is what you’ve done. I think part of it is knowing when you’re ready to make the move and you knew when the passion was sucked out of your day job. It’s a brave move to make and I envy your courage!

  5. Thanks for writing about this Candace! Many of us (including myself) are considering this enormous step, and it’s rather daunting. It’s great to hear that, though challenging, it’s working out for you!

    1. It is rather daunting, but I encourage you to follow your heart and ignore the little voice that says “You’ll never be able to afford another vacation.” Fear of failure crushes more dreams than anything else I know.

  6. You are amazing and inspiring , Candace! Loved working with you and will again ,as I get my novel in shape for you. May you continue to prosper and stay as passionate as you are about what you do!

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