When I started writing and editing, I did most of the work myself. I didn’t take advantage of promotional opportunities (because I questioned my experience), and my business crept along. That’s one of the reasons I love being able to introduce you to new freelance editors and writers – its a chance for them to get their names out there and start meeting people! This month it’s my pleasure to introduce you to Pam Lagomarsino, owner of Above the Pages – a new editing service specializing in non-fiction and children’s books.
Hi, and thanks for your willingness to appear on my blog! To start, please tell us your name and the name of your business.
Pam Lagomarsino – Above the Pages. I can be reached at https://www.upwork.com/freelancers/~01e63043502ebf9005. (Her website will be available soon!)
When did you start writing/editing professionally?
Although I have been beta reading, article writing, and informally editing for a while, I began editing professionally in spring 2015.
Why did you want to be a freelance writer/editor?
A couple I am friends with had discovered freelance editing and it was going well for them. They shared occasional details and I was intrigued by it. When the husband wrote a book and invited me to be a beta reader, I embraced the opportunity. It was then he encouraged me in that direction, but it wasn’t until several months later when I seriously considered and researched this possibility. At that point, God seemed to lead me in the direction of editing and orchestrated the events.
What’s your specialty/focus? Why/how did you pick this?
Christian nonfiction and children’s materials. I was surprised at how much I enjoyed doing nonfiction, which has included Bible studies, devotionals, workbooks, self-help, essays, and home school curriculum. I originally did not choose nonfiction, but that is what God orchestrated for me. I have asked God to use me behind the scenes to draw people closer to Him, and I believe He is doing that in the work He gets into my hands. I will continue with nonfiction and children’s books. I recently completed courses in both nonfiction and children’s books.
What’s your favorite part of this kind of work?
Knowing I am coming alongside authors to strengthen their work and make them shine. I have the privilege of taking their inspired story or teachings and refining them so they can touch the lives of their readers.
What’s been the biggest challenge you’ve had to overcome during your career?
Effectively marketing myself via social media.
What’s surprised you the most during your career?
How complex the modern publishing industry has become with the overwhelming choices for authors.
If you could give a new freelance writer/editor one piece of advice, what would it be?
Take the time to educate yourself as much as you can by reading as many online articles, books, and editing/writing newsletters. If you are able, seek out either stand-alone courses or college certificate programs for editing or writing. Seek out editors/writers on Facebook, Goodreads, the Christian PEN, or local writer’s groups so you can learn from those who have gone before you.
If you could do one thing differently in your career, what would it be?
I would have taken some editing and maybe even some grammar refresher courses before I started.
What’s your favorite kind of work? Why?
Books with a conversational tone—even if that means more extensive developmental editing. I think that is probably because I am not such a formal person.
What does your work space/office look like?
I use a spare bedroom as my office. I work on a laptop and use a computer table. I have my reference books close by, as well as a special picture of my business name with a banner and stacks of books that my daughter had made for me. I enjoy a beautiful forest view from the window.
What is your go-to snack when working?
I generally have something to drink—coffee or water. Snacks vary but could be peanut M & M’s, popcorn, or crackers.
Excluding the CMOS (that’s a given) what one editing resource would you recommend? Why?
Probably a good solid grammar reference book with easy-to-locate rules and examples.
If you could only recommend one writing resource, what would it be? Why?
I’ve perused several books over the past several months and honestly, I can’t recommend only one. Manuscript Makeover, Emotion Thesaurus, Editor-Proof Your Writing, and Roget’s Descriptionary would all be helpful to writers.
Is there anything else you’d like to add?
Be patient, if this is what God wants for you, it will come together.
You can connect with Pam on her website, Above the Pages.