At its most basic, editing is the benefit of another set of eyes.
I do wear glasses to correct my vision, but nearsightedness becomes my superpower when I sit down to read a manuscript closely. My 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)
- Adjunct Assistant Professor of English, Portland State University (teaching graduate- and undergraduate-level book editing)
- BA, cum laude, in gender studies & religious studies, Scripps College
- Visiting lectureship in religious studies, Pomona College
- Teaching fellowship & assistantships, Claremont Colleges Consortium
- Assistantship to the director, Institute of Signifying Scriptures, a research center for comparative religion
- Appointment as official dissertation reader, School of Religion, Claremont Graduate University
- Ongoing professional development—for example, with the University of Chicago, the Author-Editor Clinic, and Editcetera
- Election to the council of the Text & Academic Authors Association
- Membership on the advisory board for the Institute for Signifying Scriptures, an independent research organization
- Critical editor, Alice’s Adventures in Wonderland, illustrated by David Delamare, 2015–2016
- Associate editor for Lexington/Fortress Academic book series Scripturalization: Discourse, Formation, and Power
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
- 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 op-ed “Editing for Relevance,” which reveals something of my editorial disposition.
- The past couple of springs, I’ve had the absolute pleasure of being one of a team of judges at the Portland Regional Spelling Bee.