This week we introduce yet another IPEd 2019 conference innovation, our Mini-Mentors program.

If you’re a regular on the Secret Editors Business page on Facebook, you’ll be familiar with the format: editor has a problem, posts about it and waits. The responses roll in with advice, resources, links, sympathy and support in spades. Instead of doing this online, we’re offering the opportunity to do this in person.

Why Mini-Mentors?

We want the conference to provide extra value for delegates – especially those starting out in their careers – by facilitating frank and supportive discussion of common topics and the exchange of counsel between colleagues.

No matter how varied our editing experience has been, there comes a time when we’re unsure how (or whether) to take the next step. You may be wondering what to charge to edit a thesis, whether you need to get insurance or purchase editing software, how to set up a freelance business, or what to do about prelims in your client’s eBook. Sometimes such uncertainties can cause you to turn away clients.

Whatever questions are holding you back from your best work, we’d like you to find the answers and the support you need. Someone else at this conference has likely ‘been there, done that’, and is ready to help you move forward with confidence. Our Mini-Mentors are just like you: practising editors who are happy to share their experience, expertise and ideas. Tiny caveat: wise suggestions, not legal advice.

A woman offers a helping hand to another woman, as they climb some rocks
Photo by Bianca Raedler, via Pixabay.

How does it work?

Instructions will be displayed at the registration desk. Each basic category of editing will be flagged with its own colour sticker. For example, ‘grammar’ might be green, ‘proofreading’ might be purple. Delegates who have a question and a Mini-Mentor who can answer it will both have stickers of the same colour but different shapes. It will be fun to find each other!

If time is short, you may wish to exchange contact details with your Mini-Mentor/s and catch up after the conference.  Flash your shiny new business cards!

Have a question?

Help us to refine the main categories and topics so we can assign the Mini-Mentors.

All you need to do NOW is choose no more than two from the following categories* (add your own sub-topic if necessary) and email us with brief details of your question(s):

  • Academic editing: discipline-specific, thesis editing
  • Professional development: accreditation, training
  • Technology: audio, video, interactive
  • Business: corporate editing, project management, setting up a business
  • Digital: eBooks, production, software, design/layout
  • Diverse voices: accessibility, sensitivity reading
  • Language: grammar, style, style sheets
  • Mark-up: hard copy, on-screen
  • Other:

*Responses will be used to determine the final categories and sub-topics.

Email Christina Ratcliffe by 25 April at, with the subject line: ‘Mini-Mentors’, and provide details about yourself:

Name, email address, mobile phone (optional but helpful), brief description of your problem or question

What better way to demonstrate the power of communication than to learn a new skill and/or help a fellow editor over a hurdle? That’s networking for professional development, Mini-Mentor style.

illustration of a name tag that reads: Hello I am ... Your Mentor
Image by Tumisu, via Pixaby.