About Mike Sellars, author of The No-Nonsense Proofreading Course.
The Advertising and Marketing Years
My first foray into the eye-straining world of proofreading took place in 1989 when, at the tender age of 19, I joined a small advertising and marketing agency. Although I was hired as a copywriter, I spent as much of my time proofreading as I did writing copy.
Over the next six years, I worked for a number of agencies. Although my business card always proclaimed ‘copywriter’, none of the companies I worked for employed a proofreader, so the responsibility fell resolutely at my feet.
The Publishing Years
In 1995, I joined the publishing department of a large online retailer. Although initially employed in a freelance capacity as a copywriter, I soon found myself working there full time as a Text Operator. A Text Operator was a combination of typesetter, page make-up artist, copywriter and proofreader. During this time, I initialled more proofs than I care to think about.
I was soon promoted to Text Team Controller, heading up a small team of typesetters and proofreaders, and continuing to sign my name to the odd tree-load of proofs.
Numerous restructurings saw me take on a number of roles, but always being on hand to assist with proofreading during the many busy periods which characterised the catalogue-production calendar.
Onwards and Upwards
In 2004 I rose to the position of Operations Manager, taking responsibility for the timely and accurate production of more than ten thousand catalogue pages per year whilst heading up a team of some fifteen production personnel, including proofreaders. As well as shaping and supporting the complex processes necessary to see a catalogue through from initial concept to printed book, I was also responsible for the personal development of each team member, identifying weaknesses and advising on remedial training.
The Freelance Years and the No-Nonsense Proofreading Course
Since 2008, I have worked as a professional content writer, copywriter and, of course, proofreader. The No-Nonsense Proofreading Course comes out of a combination of all those years of experience and the sense of fair play inherited from my hardworking parents and grandparents. I was genuinely perplexed when I saw the excessive cost of many proofreading courses and thought it was about time an affordable option was made available to those people who don’t have $300 or more to spare.
I think it’s testament to the material’s effectiveness that the query I find most often in my inbox is “How is it possible that so much useful information, guidance and instruction can be bought for less than $50?”
If you have any questions, feel free to drop me a line using the contact form below. And I really do mean ‘any questions’. Even if you have no intention of buying my eBook but would just like a little advice, I’ll be more than happy to help, if I can.