For donations to the Greater Vancouver Food Bank Society, that is! Because being a starving freelancer is a myth, but 25,000 hungry people (almost half of them children) going to food banks weekly is a reality.

So, for one month (from November 15 to December 15, 2012), I’m offering my editing services in exchange for donations to the food bank. Could your Christmas letter use a proofread? Want to make sure that special recipe you’re passing on is crystal-clear? Could your essay use some help with spelling, grammar, and punctuation? Is that ad for your business is free of typos or embarrassing blunders?

How will this work?

  1. Send me the document that you want edited (one piece per customer, up to 1,500 words). Email, or arrange fax or snail mail.
  2. We’ll discuss what kind of editing you need and your preferences.
  3. I’ll edit the document and return the changes to you (in hard copy markup, MS Word track changes, or PDF markup).
  4. You review the changes and donate the amount you wish to pay for the service. You can donate by cash, cheque, online credit card payment, or food donation. (For reference, my normal rate is $45/hour, which is about 4-5 pages of copy editing.)
  5. All donations will go to the Greater Vancouver Food Bank Society. The food bank issues charitable tax receipts for donations of $20 or more.

What is “editing”?

Editing is a process of improving writing. It ensures your document is consistent and correct in language and content. Editing can improve style and readability (such as reducing wordiness and vagueness); correct spelling, grammar, and punctuation; and identify issues with content, such as incorrect facts, missing information, or inconsistencies that might trip up a reader.

Editing helps make your ideas clearer, while preserving meaning and your unique voice.

Facts about the Greater Vancouver Food Bank (

  • Distributes about 8 million pounds of food annually.
  • Relies on volunteers and donations – does not receive government funding.
  • Feeds about 25,000 people in our community each week through food boxes, meal programs and community kitchens.
  • About 41 percent of recipients are children.
  • For every $1 donated, they can buy about $3 worth of food because of bulk purchasing power.

Game rules and butt-covering fine print

  1. One document per client, maximum of 1,500 words (about 5 double-spaced pages).
  2. This offer is good from November 15, 2012, to December 15, 2012. It may be limited due to available resources.
  3. The work submitted for editing must be substantially complete. For this offer, only editing services are included, not writing, rewriting, formatting, design, research, or manuscript critique.
  4. All editing work will be done in confidence.
  5. All edits are a form of advice and suggestions from the editor to the client. The client is responsible for accepting or rejecting any such suggestions. The editor will make every effort to bring to the attention of the client any questionable material contained in the work. The client agrees to indemnify and save harmless the editor from any and all claims or demands, including legal fees, arising out of any alleged libel or copyright infringement in association with the work. In other words: your document, your intellectual property, your responsibility.
  6. Payment is by donation to the Greater Vancouver Food Bank Society. Donations over $20 are eligible for a charitable tax receipt. Donations of non-perishable food items are also gratefully accepted.
  7. Santa Claus is watching.

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