Satisfaction Guaranteed

Yesterday was a busy day but I got a little cherry on top of my ice cream, figuratively speaking, after receiving this email.

Thanks so much! You did a really great job with editing, and you were able to find a lot of the issues that I commonly overlook. I plan to use you again (next time I’ll ensure that you’ll have more time) in the future.

Good luck with your blog!”

The above message came from a a graduate student who posted an ad on Craigslist needing someone to edit and proofread their thesis proposal. I jumped right on it and replied immediately. I am a slight grammar geek and the idea of someone paying me to ensure their semicolons are used properly makes my heart flutter.

After a few email exchanges, which included some negiotiation on my part, we settled on a price and deadline. A rather quick deadline, I might add. Twenty-five pages, double-spaced no later than noon the following day. Once I received paypment via Paypal, I did not waste time. I knew once she saw my comments and track changes she would concede that her money was well spent.

Now that I allow myself more time and freedom to write, I can also spend time editing and proofreading for a fee. I’ve paid my dues. Since I was in middle, I got requests from family members and friends to proofread their cover letters, e-mails, resumes and papers. I will never forget sophomore year when my college roommate and best friend, Jennifer, politely asked me to proofread her history paper. Obviously, I obliged and asked, “When’s it due?”

“Tonight.”

Now, I should have known better because throughout our undergraduate years, Jennifer had a tendency to procrastinate to a fault. Luckily, she had someone like me who liked diction and took time to review her work. For the record, she never got a grade lower than a B+ on her history papers that semester. And yes, I am taking some credit for that.

I’m a good friend and did not charge for her for my services. But next time…

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