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Community Spotlight: Nevvie Gane - Editor

Join us for a cup of coffee or tea and a quiet sit-down interview with a new local business owner.

And by "local" we mean our global community where we offer support and encouragement for all small businesses, around the world!

Thank you for agreeing to answer a few questions for my newsletter and give our visitor's insight on your company! This interview will be in a very laid-back style, as if we were just sitting in a coffee shop chatting over some lattes and teas. I hope you enjoy the interview...

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First, I would like to start with an introduction for our visitors. Could you tell us a little about yourself? What are your hobbies or interests? Quirks? Favorite winter drink?

I’m Nevvie and I’m a freelance book editor. I live in Europe with my partner and our cat, Maina. In my free time, I like to do yoga, run or swim (depending on the season), and take long walks in the forest.

My quirks have to do with organization - for example, I can’t stand a messy apartment, I suffer physically until everything is in order. This applies to everything else in my life (including manuscripts).

I’m a coffee addict but also enjoy a cup of hot cocoa in the winter.

Now on to the juicy details! What inspired you to become an editor? How did you start out your small business journey? When did you start?

Most editors will say their inspiration was their love for books, and I am no different. After eight years in digital marketing where I was completely burned out and miserable, I realized that having a high position in a respectable international company didn’t bring me any joy. I only really lived during the weekends and dreaded Monday morning.

So I knew I had to change my lifestyle completely. I knew I wanted to do something with books and after some research, I found the editor profession really appealing. It was 2020, we were still early in the pandemic, but this gave me time to learn, get my qualifications for an editor and start my side hustle. Now, almost two years later, I am a full-time freelance editor and can’t wait for Monday morning to come :)


What do you like/love about editing? What do you hate/loathe/procrastinate intentionally to avoid?

I know this will sound strange, but to me editing is like solving a math equation. I read a sentence, I know what was the author’s intention, but it’s not quite there yet. That feeling I get when I change a word, rephrase, or completely change the structure, and the sentence flows perfectly, can’t be compared to anything.

I always procrastinate when I have to do marketing :) Even though I have experience in it, I hate promoting myself. I believe your work should speak for itself, but I also realize that in these early days, marketing is essential.


What are your favorite subjects to read and/or edit? Where do you get your drive to support your clients?

I don’t think I have a favorite subject. I love going into a project with no expectations at all and being completely mind-blown.

I admire all writers: first for the courage to write and second for their talent. I guess my admiration for these qualities is what drives me. My clients’ success is my success, so by being encouraging, supportive, and friendly, I want to help everyone create the best version of their book.


Are there any surprises or hidden secrets new business owners in the publishing and editing field need to know about? Anything that surprised you when you started?

It was a positive surprise for me: this community is very supportive. I didn’t know anyone when I started and now I have friends from all over the world, including fellow editors who are willing to share their experience and knowledge. It’s really incredible.

When did you edit your first book? How long does the process take? Are there any specific areas a new author should be mindful of when approaching an editor?

The first book I edited was a children’s book, so it was a shorter one. How long it takes depends on the state of the manuscript and the type of editing required. For example, proofreading will be faster than line editing where you have to rewrite sentences and even paragraphs.

As much as it pains me to say this, new authors need to be mindful of scammers. Make sure you research your editor: do they have a professionally looking website? Do they have testimonials from past clients? I always offer free sample edits to my clients - this is the only way to demonstrate my skills, but also to help determine if the writer and I are a good match.


Let’s talk about one of your more recent projects, like Angels in the Architecture* and Mr. Mulligan*. What motivates you to edit different genres or authors?

One of the reasons I fell in love with editing is the diversity of projects. One day I am editing an article about architects (and learning something new on the topic) and on the next one I am completely immersed in a tragic love story. You can learn something new from every genre. With Mr. Mulligan for example, I started a simple biography project, and by the end of it, I had adopted a new life philosophy, called “No Handicaps,” completely unexpected.

*For more information on these books, or to order your own copy, click the links below:


When you pick out a project to start editing, what are your steps? Do you simply start reading? Or do you use any helpful editing tools or websites for things like grammar or spelling checks?

Once all expectations and deliverables are clarified, yes, you could say I simply start reading. I always have a notepad next to me, I take notes and then revise them later. In addition to copy/line editing and proofreading, I always provide what I call “light manuscript critique” - it’s basically my feedback on the manuscript - where there are any unclear parts, sections I especially enjoyed, characters I liked/disliked, etc.


When you pick out a project to start editing, what are your steps? Do you simply start reading? Or do you use any helpful editing tools or websites for things like grammar or spelling checks?

My experience has shown me that it’s best to always have everything in writing, so even if we agreed on certain points in a video call or in person, I would send an email summarizing everything that’s been discussed. This way you avoid any misunderstandings and everyone is on the same page.


Finally, can you let our visitors know about any new, up-coming projects you have in the works?

I’m happy and very lucky to have several projects lined up in the next few months. I can’t really talk about anything specific at present, but I can share that I am taking on my first corporate client.

To wrap up our interview, can you give any new aspiring editors out there reading this your thoughts, encouragement, or advice about following their dreams to become an editor?

First of all, I want to say that to be an editor it’s not enough to love reading - you also have to love editing! Reading for pleasure is one thing, but editing is really hard work that requires serious mental, financial, and even emotional investment, so make sure this really is what you want to do. And be prepared to lose your mind over a comma :D

Thank you for your time today. I hope you had as much fun answering these questions as our visitors will be following along!

Thank you for inviting me and for being such a wonderful person, KJ!

If you would like to learn more about Nevvie Gane's editing services, click here. You can also see a list of our other community business owners here. Please consider visiting their shops online, maybe bring a friend, or two... or five! Let's continue to support our local small businesses in our ever growing, global, community!!!

If you enjoyed this interview and would like to have a notice of the next one, subscribe to our email list. When you do, you can consider becoming a member and enjoy special member exclusive access to this website.

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