Introducing the Editorial Freelancer’s Association’s NorCal Chapter

by Janna Marlies Maron on June 13, 2011

Editor’s note: This is a guest post by ThinkHouse member, Robin Martin.

Around here, it’s all about collaboration. Being part of a team of professionals is motivating and inspiring. But when we move out of a corporate office and into our own spaces, we have to work harder to create these opportunities. You’re here, so you probably already know the reasons for joining a place like ThinkHouse. Get out of the house. Bounce ideas. Grow your skills. Expand your mind.

ThinkHouse hosts a number of groups and events that work toward this end.  One of the organizations that is privileged to enjoy this beautiful workspace once a month is the Northern California chapter of the Editorial Freelancers Association (EFA).

The EFA is a national not-for-profit organization that supports freelance professionals from all areas of publishing. It is also recognized throughout the publishing industry as a resource for filling freelance needs.  The organization is based in NYC, but there are a number of regional chapters, including the NorCal chapter that started here in the Sacramento area in October 2010.

On the last Monday of each month, we’ve been gathering at ThinkHouse to learn from others about the business we’re in—the idea being that if we nurture “a wider understanding of the crucial role of the independent editorial professional in the modern publishing and communications industries, and enhance the performance and improve the skills of those professionals,” (as it says in the EFA Mission Statement) we will collectively be in a better place.

The NorCal Chapter members and friends bring a wide range of specialties to the group. We have copyeditors, proofreaders, developmental editors, project managers, technical writers, researchers, a desktop publisher or two, a book developer or two, e-book writers, bloggers, a manuscript evaluator or two, marketing specialists, agents, publishers, and writers of all kinds.

As with other professional organizations, most of the meetings include a presentation and opportunities for informal networking.  Some of the topics we’ve covered include:

“How social media can help journalists, editors and other publication professionals.”

“What freelancers need to know when it comes to tax time.”

“Uncovering the ins and outs of the publish-on-demand model.”

At our June 27, 7 p.m. meeting, we will be discussing the benefits of EFA membership in a special segment of the meeting called: “What the EFA has done for me, it can do for you!”

We will also be hammering out the details of the event/speaker schedule for the rest of 2011. Of course, we will have camaraderie and beverages.

If you are a freelance professional in the publishing industry, you may find value in the EFA, and it meets right here at ThinkHouse.  Our meetings take place on the last Monday of each month, with the exception of certain holidays. 
Please check the EFA website for more information.

Robin Martin is a freelance editor, publishing consultant and founder of Two Songbirds Press.

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