At its most basic, editing is the benefit of another set of eyes.
Attentive editing refines your compositions so that your research reaches the right audiences—and so that you experience the relief and accomplishment that result from completing writing projects.
I am a Chicago-trained academic editor with years of experience.
Please peruse my menu of services, which are designed to support a variety of writing projects at any stage, from brainstorming to final polishing.
Katie Van Heest, PhD
Scholarship matters . . . but much of it stagnates before it sees the light of day. I refine scholarly writing in order to optimize its value in the academy and broader culture.
My academic credentials allow me to think critically about your project, and I have the editing chops to smooth your style and scaffold your ideas. I obsess about grammar, mechanics, argument, formatting, and consistency so that you can focus on generating your scholarly contribution.
CREDENTIALS & EXPERIENCE
- PhD & MA in the study of religion, Claremont Graduate University
- Certificate in editing, University of Chicago (training through the advanced level, including developmental editing, acquisitions editing, and electronic methods)
- BA, cum laude, in gender studies & religious studies, Scripps College
- Adjunct Assistant Professor of English, Portland State University (teaching graduate- and undergraduate-level book editing)
- Associate Editor, Lexington/Fortress Academic book series Scripturalization: Discourse, Formation, and Power
- Elected Council Member, Text & Academic Authors Association
- Advisory Board Member, Institute for Signifying Scriptures, an independent research organization
- Critical Editor, Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, illustrated by David Delamare
- Ongoing professional development—for example, with the University of Chicago, the Author-Editor Clinic, and Editcetera
- Visiting Lecturer in Religious Studies, Pomona College
- Teaching Fellow, Claremont Colleges Consortium
- Assistant to the Director, Institute of Signifying Scriptures, a research center for comparative religion
- Official Dissertation Reader, School of Religion, Claremont Graduate University
SCHOLARS, PUBLISHERS & SOCIETIES
In addition to my work with individual professors, independent scholars, and advanced students, I have edited for Fordham University Press, Indiana University Press, and the Society of Biblical Literature. I have also been the copyeditor for the journal Media Industries.
PRESS & APPEARANCES
- A 2020 profile in The Bulletin for the Study of Religion.
- At the 2019 annual meeting of the American Historical Association, presented on a panel of editors entitled “The Marathon of Academic Writing and Getting Out of Your Own Way.”
- In my webinar “Manuscript Review in the Humanities: Embrace Criticism and Stand Up For Your Ideas,” presented and recorded in October 2016 for the Text and Academic Authors Association, I explain the stages of critique and revision involved in bringing a scholarly book to press.
- The Portland chapter of the Northwest Independent Editors Guild invited me to speak on academic editing (spring 2016).
- I wrote a May 2014 post called “How to Write a Sophisticated, Dynamic Scholarly Argument” for the blog of the Text and Academic Authors Association.
- In September 2013, I presented a webinar with the Text and Academic Authors Association. More information, including download links, here: “Pushing Your Writing, Raising Your Profile.”
- UPPERCASE (“a magazine for the creative and curious”) profiled me, Tweed, and my lifelong fascination with text. More here.
- I was able to reflect in person upon the interdisciplinary mission of the Institute for Signifying Scriptures at its ten-year celebration in 2014.
- The Claremont Graduate University Pedant interviewed me for a May 2013 story about how academic writers can overcome inertia. Read the whole article here.
- In 2011, Copyediting interviewed me about scholarly editing. Read it here.
- The Scripps College alumnae magazine ran my opinion piece “Editing for Relevance,” which reveals something of my editorial disposition.
- For several years I had the absolute pleasure of being on the judging team for the Portland Regional Spelling Bee.