Soundings Publications, based in Essex, CT, produces three monthly, nationally-distributed magazines: Soundings (a consumer boating magazine), Woodshop News (a woodworking industry magazine), and Trade Only Today (a boating industry magazine). As their Proofreader and Editorial Assistant, I was responsible for a great many things, chief among them going over the proofs for each magazine with a fine-toothed comb and ensuring they conformed to Associate Press Style.
Each magazine operated on a tight production cycle, with one week each month devoted to bringing each magazine from proof to print. In addition to giving the copy a final look-through, I also worked in conjunction with the designers to over all page-design elements right down to the kerning. Working in this fast-paced and demanding production environment forced me to develop all the skills necessary to be a both efficient and meticulous editor.
In addition to my duties as a proofreader, I also worked closely with the editorial staff for all three magazines to produce and distribute daily and weekly e-newsletters. This required me to do a great deal of HTML formatting with Microsoft Frontpage, as well as maintenance of the magazine’s respective websites through Joomla, their Content Management System. Towards the end of my tenure at Soundings Publications, I also began to write the monthly “Book Notes” column for Soundings’ “Home Waters” section.
My time spent at Soundings was perhaps the most rewarding period of my professional career, and many of the skills that make me an excellent freelancer are skills that I developed there. Had the swift winds of change that have been altering the field of print journalism not claimed my position (and the positions of many other copy editors and proofreaders), I’d likely still be there today.
If you’re interested in seeing samples of the writing I produced for Soundings magazine, you can download this PDF or you can check out any of the links below: