It’s no secret that you need a love of words to have a proofreading and copyediting side hustle. In this post, I want you to meet someone who took action and turned her love of reading and her detail-oriented nature into a side business.
Juli Burgett’s passion and eye for detail has helped her build a following of dedicated authors. They love her work so much they praise her in their acknowledgements! Keep reading to find out how her editorial side hustle has impacted her life, her advice for starting your own proofreading and copyediting side hustle, and how she balances everything in a day.
Hi Juli! Can you tell us about yourself?
I was a very big reader growing up, along with my mom and one of my three brothers. I ALWAYS had a book with me. As an adult I’ve had many different jobs, the longest being a 13-year career with Whole Foods Market, but about six years ago I got a job working at a two-year college. I actually still do that, as an administrative assistant for a dean, and proofread on the side, although that is picking up quite a bit lately.
What is the name of your editorial business and what is your favourite kind of content to work with?
Right now you can find me under Juli Burgett Proofreading and Copyediting Services, although I am working on rebranding in the near future. I work on all types of content, but my favorite is fiction and for some reason have worked on quite a few dark romances.
What made you decide to start a proofreading and copyediting side hustle?
Several years ago I realized that my love for reading and my detail-oriented and perfectionist personality were a great combination for proofreading and copyediting work. A friend of mine wrote a short e-book and that was the first thing I worked on and I really enjoyed it. Shortly after that I started looking for training and found Edit Republic.
My goal is to eventually work full-time for myself and to be able to work from anywhere. I have a bit of a wanderer’s spirit and would love to be able to travel and have extended visits with friends and family all over while still being able to work. I’m getting closer to that goal all the time!
What do you feel proud of having accomplished since starting your own editorial business?
I feel proud that I have authors that have come back to me multiple times for the final proofread of their books. I’ve started getting mentions in acknowledgments, and being someone that has always read every page of books, it’s super exciting to see my name in them!
What do you like best about being a freelance proofreader and copy editor?
Like so many others, I love the flexibility of working for myself and being able to choose the projects I work on. I love helping authors perfect their work and all the different things I get to read. I learn so much from the books I work on, and not just the grammar and punctuation questions that pop up, but the content of the books themselves. I believe that no matter what you’re reading, you’re always learning.
Want to turn your love of books into a proofreading and copyediting side hustle?
Note from Phon: If you want to learn how to start your own proofreading and copyediting side hustle from home, sign up for my free masterclass that’ll teach you my 4-step framework that includes editorial skills, marketing and publishing knowledge.
How has your side hustle impacted your life?
It has definitely helped me financially, and during this crazy time of a pandemic it has helped keep me busy. Almost too busy in fact!
It sounds like you have a full day! Can you give us an idea of what your average day is like and how you balance everything?
I am more of a night owl, so I generally sleep until about eight or nine o’clock in the morning, and then I’m up letting my dog out and feeding him breakfast before I start my workday with the college. I’m generally done with that between four and five o’clock.
I take a little break and we go for a walk, and then I start working on whatever proofreading project I am working on at the moment. I take frequent breaks for dinner and other little things, like phone calls with friends and family or odd jobs around the house. I can easily stay up working until midnight or one o’clock, especially if it’s a project I’m really interested in.
What advice do you have for people who want to start their own proofreading and copyediting side hustle?
If you think proofreading is something you’d be interested in and would enjoy doing, start practicing with everything you read—books, websites, magazines, and signs. See if it’s something you really enjoy doing and if it is, find some training and jump in! I highly recommend Edit Republic!
How did High-Level Proofreading Pro prepare you for starting your own editorial business?
Going through HLPP really gave me the confidence I needed to take on projects. I enjoyed working on all the modules and it helped me realize that it really was something I was good at and wanted to pursue. I found areas I needed to brush up on, and the program also gave me the tools and knowledge of where to find answers when I have questions.
About Juli Burgett
Juli Burgett currently resides in New Mexico with her sweet dog, Booker (yes, his name stems from my love of books!), where she enjoys spending time with family and friends, travel, photography, and of course, reading. You can find her at: juliburgett.com and @juliproofreader on Instagram and “Juli Burgett Proofreading & Copyediting Services” on Facebook.