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March 2024
Vol. 5 No. 2 | ISSN: 2652-5836

This month we have two very exciting announcements. 

The 3rd edition of the IPEd standards for editing practice will be published on Thursday 21 March. The IPEd Standards Working Party has gone through a thorough and consultative process and the results are impressive. 

And the winner of the 2024 Student Prize is a student in the Graduate Certificate in Writing, Editing and Publishing program at the University of Queensland – next month we’ll feature the winning entry so stay tuned for that. 

Find more on both of these announcements below. 

Also this month we have:

  • an update on the 2024 Janet Mackenzie Medal
  • a call for volunteers for the IPEd Mentoring Standing Committee
  • a list of the most common accreditation exam questions and their answers, compiled by the Accreditation Board 
  • a tribute to Jim Hart, a Society of Editors (Victoria) committee member and newsletter editor during the 1970s and 1980s , written by Editors Victoria’s Bridget Blair.

Plus we have event reports, some fantastic opportunities and resources, an Easter-themed crossword and a fascinating article co-written by IPEd member Dr Renée Otmar DE for The Conversation, which explores how ChatGPT edits fiction.

Are you following IPEd’s social accounts? 

Find us on LinkedIn, Facebook, Instagram and X/Twitter. And don’t forget to tag us when sharing your events or news. We’re always keen to see what our members are up to and delighted to share your successes! 

Plain as a peacock: how to wow with plain English editing
Date: Sunday 17 and 24 March 2024

  • Join Justine Dixon Cooper for this 2-part virtual workshop on the core principles of plain English. With plenty of practical tips and real-world activities, it will show you how to transform text from top to tail. 

Editing Asia: Dr Pallavi Narayan on the publishing industry across Asia
Monday 18 March 2024

  • Join Dr Pallavi Narayan as she talks about the publishing industry across Asia: its characteristics, developments and trends. 

Networking event: Neurodivergent editors’ meet-up
Date: Tuesday 19 March 2024

  • Join us online for the first-ever IPEd neurodivergent editors’ meet-up. Meet your fellow neurodivergent editors and share experiences, tips and tricks for navigating the industry. 

Which style guide is right for you?
Date: Saturday 23 March 2024

  • Canberra Society of Editors and IPEd are jointly hosting this event which will feature presentations from representatives of the 3 style guides, followed by a discussion and an opportunity for you to ask questions.

Exam registration support sessions
Date: Tuesday 26 March 2024

  • This free, 2-hour registration support session helps candidates with the registration process. These sessions are completely optional and you arrive and leave at any time during the 2-hour window. 

How to get editing work in Australian universities
Date: Tuesday 2 April 2024

  • Dr Kai Jensen discusses the sorts of editing work universities, their staff and students are willing to pay for, how to get this work, and how it is changing.

Special Interest Group for academic editors
Date: Wednesday 17 April 2024

  • Do you work as an academic editor? Are you interested in branching out into the field? We would love to have you join us to meet like-minded colleagues, discuss your experiences in the field and ask curly questions.

Preparing for the 2024 Accreditation Exam – online workshops series 2
Date: Wednesday 1, 8 and 15 May 2024

  • This series of three 2-hour online workshops follows IPEd’s standardised syllabus for exam preparation, designed for people intending to sit the IPEd accreditation exam.

Editing for the Autistic voice
Date: Tuesday 7 May 2024

  • In this in-conversation event, cultural critic, Autistic advocate and screenwriting researcher Clem Bastow and Autistic editor Louise Merrington will discuss editing the Autistic voice – what it is, their own experiences of being edited as Autistic writers, and how editors can work with neurodivergent clients in ways that maintain the authenticity of their voices.

The 2024 IPEd Student Prize has been awarded to Despina Cook, a student in the Graduate Certificate in Writing, Editing and Publishing program at the University of Queensland.

Despina was awarded the prize for a structural edit report of a book manuscript. The task, undertaken for the WRIT7070 Editing the Manuscript unit, comprised a 3,000 to 3,500 word structural report on one of seven manuscripts of varying genres and lengths. Despina’s choice was “The Blue Poppy Sea”, a 135,000-word novel described as a literary thriller.

IPEd CEO Karen Lee shares news of the events bulletin, IPEd standards for editing practice and the accreditation exam.

With registrations for the 2024 accreditation exam now open, the Accreditation Board is keen to address some of the frequently asked questions about the exam.

Third edition of IPEd standards for editing practice launches with a focus on accessibility, inclusion, and current and emerging trends. IPEd members are invited to attend the online launch on Thursday 21 March 2024 at 6 pm AEDT / 8 pm NZDT which will include opportunity for discussion.

The Janet Mackenzie Medal is IPEd’s highest award.
It is awarded to an editor who has demonstrated outstanding excellence in professional practice over many years and significantly advanced the editing profession and/or given exemplary service to IPEd over many years.

Interested in helping steer the IPEd Mentoring Program into the future?

The IPEd Mentoring Standing Committee is looking for new committee members to help run and grow the Mentoring Program. 

Editors Victoria is saddened to acknowledge the passing of Jim Hart in January. Jim was a significant figure in the early days of Editors Victoria, then known as the Society of Editors. He served as a committee member and newsletter editor during the 1970s and 1980s.

Ever wondered what the difference is between a “post” and a “story” on Instagram? The IPEd members who attended the Editors WA (EdWA) workshop “Social media for editors”, held on Thursday 15 February 2024, can now tell you.

Editors NSW welcomed Julie Ganner AE to our 2024 professional development series on Tuesday 6 February. Julie spoke to the importance and implementation of accessible editing practice in her presentation “Books without barriers: editing for equal access”.

IPEd member Dr Renée Otmar was one of four editors who examined how ChatGPT edits fiction for The Conversation. Their results reveal that “without human editorial intelligence, ChatGPT does more harm than help. But when used by human editors, it’s like any other tool – as good, or bad, as the tradesperson who wields it.”

In 2022, Dr Eugen Bacon gave a passionate and thought-provoking presentation for Editors Victoria.

An Easter-themed crossword from Mark Taylor.

Blak & Bright First Nations Literary Festival

The Blak & Bright First Nations Literary Festival is on from Thursday 14 March to Sunday 17 March in Melbourne/Naarm and online. The four-day showcase celebrates the diverse expressions of First Nations writers and covers all genres from oral stories to epic novels and plays to poetry.

The program is jam-packed with stellar events, including  Language Lives looking at what role First Nations languages play in Australia’s creative outputs and  Blak Imprints discussing the importance of First Nations imprints in publishing. 

Find the full program and lots more in the Blak & Bright website.  

Round 11 of The Neilma Sidney Literary Travel Fund is now open!

The Neilma Sidney Literary Travel Fund supports emerging, midcareer and established Australian writers and literary sector workers in pursuing professional development opportunities. This includes editors currently living in Australia. Applicants can apply for grants between $2,000 and $10,000. These grants support professional development through travel.

Applications close on 11.59 pm (AEDT), Sunday 17 March 2024

Apply via the Submittable form. Terms and conditions are outlined in the application form.

For any queries, please contact Jennifer at Writers Victoria at

Find more information on the Writers Victoria website.

2024 Open Book: Australian Publishing Internship

Applications are now open for the 2024 Open Book: Australian Publishing Internship. Open Book is a paid internship program that seeks to foster cultural and linguistic diversity in the Australian publishing industry. Over the course of the program, Open Book interns will gain in-house experience at Australian publishing organisations from across the commercial, independent and education sectors.

The 2024 Open Book program will offer three paid placements across Sydney and Melbourne. Of the internships on offer, one is an identified Aboriginal and/or Torres Strait Islander position.

Visit for more information and to apply.

Applications close on Monday 25 March 2024.

Back yourself: an honest guide on how to be a creative freelancer

Thinking about going freelance? Read on for some valuable advice. 

“Life, as we all know, goes up and down, and getting gigs does too. It’s part of the risk of going on the ‘lance as it’s known, or swimming with the agile workforce. You just don’t know. There’s safety in PAYE and accruing holiday pay but then there’s 9 to 5.

For those tempted to dive into the wonders and sometimes nail-biting times of the freelance world, then a good first step is talking to others already doing it.”

Read more via ArtsHub.

This article was first published by The Big Idea, New Zealand.