Editors Unplugged: Get to know our panellists for Professional Editorial Standards in Action (Part II)

Interviews conducted by Catherine Dorton.

Our popular monthly program meetings often feature a jam-packed agenda. We like to keep our introductions short, so you can hear more from our panellists and less from us! It’s hard to do justice to the incredible wealth of experience these guests bring to the table, so we are offering you a preview with this short Q&A beforehand.


Jennifer DinsmoreJennifer Dinsmore

What were your goals when you started your career and have you reached them?

When I first started this career and got my Creative Book Publishing certificate from Humber College, I definitely saw myself as an in-house editor. But the job market didn’t make that easy. I went on to complete an internship and bounced around a bit in related roles, the longest as a publicist/proofreader for a small academic publisher. I still wanted to focus on editing, so I started a freelance editorial business three years ago. Now, my goal is to help independent and self-publishing authors prepare their books for market or to query [literary] agents. When a client tells me how much I’ve helped them, I know I’ve been successful, but it’s something I strive toward all the time.

If you could pick a new profession, what would you be and why?

I love what I do, but we all have days when we imagine ourselves in other roles. I’ve long been trying to cultivate a regular writing habit, so being a writer is high on the list. I’m rather creative and when I was younger, I wanted to be an interior decorator. Playing with colours and fabrics to make them reflect someone’s personality seemed like a lot of fun. I’ve also considered personal training as I love to run and stay active, but I don’t think I would like it as a career.

Twitter, Facebook, Instagram? Other? Why? Why not?

With the heavy news of late, I’ve been trying to avoid social media; but with a business to run, it is a little hard at times. So, I try to use each for business purposes, tailoring messages for each platform. That said, I do curate my Twitter feed, so I can keep up with the literary world and connect with colleagues. Instagram is a great source for connecting with potential clients and simply browsing my own niche interests. I also like Pinterest for this reason as well.

Jennifer Dinsmore is a certified proofreader and has been a member of Editors Canada since 2015. In 2007, she got her start in publishing as an editorial assistant for an academic publisher. Three years ago, she started a freelance editorial business and has completed projects for both publishers and independent authors. Her focus is on literary fiction, with an interest in magical realism and urban fantasy. Jennifer is currently a member of the editorial board tasked with updating Editors Canada’s Meeting Professional Editorial Standards. She holds a BA (Hons) in English Literature from Trent University, as well as a certificate in Creative Book Publishing from Humber College.

Laura EdlundLaura Edlund

What were your goals when you started your career and have you reached them?

I wanted to work on books, books, and more books, with interesting authors, and about a wide range of subjects. I have done that and much more, including much more writing, research, project development, anthologizing, and project management than I envisioned, plus working on websites, newsletters, trading cards, videos, news articles, maps, photos, timelines, charts, speeches, proposals, etc. I’ve worked with some fantastic writers, outstanding subject experts, wordsmiths, expert communicators, and dogged students, plus many other players in communications such as designers, fellow writers and editors, clients, readers, and users.

If you could pick a new profession, what would you be and why?

I’m torn. I love doing the work I do—it suits my bookishness and introversion—and I continue to learn every day. But I think that librarians are gods, good teachers are gods, and linguists are mind-bogglingly cool. And I’d love work where I could be more active and in nature. And let’s toss in painting, travel, movies, embroidery, and dog ownership. So, imagine a day of writing, editing, librarying, hiking, more writing, riding a bike….

Twitter, Facebook, Instagram? Other? Why? Why not?

Twitter and FB—but not Instagram—because I started the other two first, and three platforms plus FOMO can spread a person too thin.

Laura Edlund is an editor, writer, project manager, and publishing consultant based in Toronto. She works full-time at the southern office of an Arctic publisher (Inhabit Education, based in Iqaluit) and takes on freelance writing and editing projects as well. For over 30 years, she has worked in-house (Inhabit, Pearson, Annick, McGraw, Harcourt Brace Jovanovich, Holt Rinehart and Winston) and freelance (Page Two Strategies, Nelson, Annick, JumpMath, Scholastic, Oxford, Kids Can, Toronto Star, Gage, etc.). Some of her editing specialties are writings by and about Indigenous peoples in Canada, anthologies, multi-lingual publications, plain language, maps, and technical illustrations. 


This article was copy edited by Nikhil Lobo.

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