Careers in Editing

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Looking for an entry level job or internship in editing? This is an overview of how to approach the search and a list of companies that might have relevant entry level and internship opportunities.

One of my favorite books that I recently discovered is Ellen Degeneres’ Seriously…I’m Kidding. Seriously though, I’m not kidding. I literally laughed out loud while reading the introduction, which is something most books don’t make me do. I know Ellen devoted hours to writing her book and then rehashed it again and again to make the book the masterpiece that it is. She didn’t go through that process alone, though. She worked with an editor, who suggested changes to make it better–everything from punctuation, to specific words to substitute, to the overall topics covered. An editor collaborates with a creator to make a complete final product the best it can be.

Editing Careers

Photo Credit: Flickr user dtron

Editing Career Guide Overview

  1. What an Editor Does
  2. A Typical Day for an Editor
  3. Salary and Career Progression for an Editor
  4. Best Locations for Editing
  5. Pros and Cons of Being an Editor
  6. What You Need to Know for a Career in Editing
  7. Editing Resources
  8. Careers Related to Editing
  9. Companies with Jobs and Internships in Editing

What an Editor Does

An editor selects and prepares written, visual, audible, and film media to produce a correct, consistent, accurate, and complete work. The editing process often begins with the creator’s idea for the work itself, continuing as a collaboration between the creator and the editor as the work is created. Editors can work within a number of industries, so there are many opportunities, such as film editing, technical editing, book editing, and musical editing.

A Typical Day for an Editor

During a typical day, an editor works with the creator and does a lot of reading or viewing, reviewing, and making suggestions to make the final product better. You might spend a lot of time behind a computer editing a work. After the creator receives your edited work, they might discuss the changes with you and suggest more, leading to another round of editing.

If you’re a book editor, you might attend a production meeting where you would go over each title with the design, copy-editing, and production departments to make sure everything is going according to schedule. You could also spend time meeting with an illustrator who’s showing his or her portfolio or meeting with a designer to go over cover ideas, or to review sketches for a picture book. You might have a conference call with an agent and/or an author. You might have an informational interview with someone trying to break into publishing. You might be meeting with a foreign publisher or a packager. All these tasks require computer skills, people skills, and the ability to handle multiple projects.

Salary and Career Progression for an Editor

Beginning editors earn on average between $27,000 and $76,000 per year. From there, you can grow into a number of roles including Senior Editor ($39,000-$99,000), Managing Editor ($30,000-$89,000), and Editor for Magazines ($27,000-$93,000).

Best Locations for Editing

These hot spots are some of the best spots for editors:

  • Seattle, Washington
  • Atlanta, Georgia
  • New York, New York
  • Los Angeles, California
  • Houston, Texas
  • Chicago, Illinois
  • Washington, DC
  • Boston, Massachusetts
  • San Francisco, California

Pros and Cons of Being an Editor

Pros
  • You can work within a number of different industries
  • Your work contributes to a final masterpiece
  • You put your creativity to work
Cons
  • Need to pay attention to detail
  • Need lots of client relation skills
  • Don’t have total control over the final content you produce
  • Can be odd working hours

What You Need to Know for a Career in Editing

A bachelor’s degree in English, Communications or Journalism is often a prerequisite to becoming an editor. In these programs, you typically learn about composition, sentence structure and editing. Advanced courses cover topics like news or content editing. There is a chance that if you demonstrate strong writing and editorial skills, you’d be able to just train on the job.

Beyond that, you might consider an editorial internship in a publishing house or with a news organization, which will help you gain professional experience while still in college. Although editorial internships are often unpaid, interns gain writing, editing and researching skills and make connections that could help them secure a job. Recent graduates often start out as editorial assistants and advance to work under an editor-in-chief.

Editing Resources

If editing still sounds like your cup of tea, here are a few things you should do to get started.

Required Reading

Blogs and Websites

Networking Opportunities

Job Search Resources

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Companies with Entry Level Jobs and Internships in Editing

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The Wirecutter - The Wirecutter is a site that offers “a list of the best electronics and gadgetry" that will help you make the absolute best purchasing decision.

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Noom Logo

Noom - Noom is an NYC based company that makes healthy living easy by using "cutting-edge technology to accurately monitor your progress and provide expert advice and analysis."

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Quarasan Logo

Quarasan - Quarasan is a Chicago, IL based “full service conceptual developer of content for publishers of educational materials and products.”

See the complete Quarasan profile


Trefis Logo

Trefis - Trefis is a Boston, MA based company that has developed a set of tools that “helps you understand how a company’s products impact its stock price.”

See the complete Trefis profile


Stitcher Logo

Stitcher - Stitcher is a San Francisco, CA based company that lets you access “over 20,000+ radio shows and podcasts on your iPhone, iPad, Android or PC–anytime, anywhere.”

See the complete Stitcher profile


Healthline Logo

Healthline - Healthline is a San Francisco, CA based company that has built “the largest, most clinically accurate classification of health information available on the web.”

See the complete Healthline profile


FierceMarkets Logo

FierceMarkets - FierceMarkets is a Washington, DC based company that specializes in business-to-business media, publications, and marketing.

See the complete FierceMarkets profile


Landor Logo

Landor - Landor is a global agency that helps "the world’s best brands stand up, stand out, and stand for something.”

See the complete Landor profile


Firecracker Logo

Firecracker - Firecracker is a Cambridge, MA based company that has built the “most advanced learning platform for the next generation of Physicians.”

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Society for Science & the Public Logo

Society for Science & the Public - The Society for Science & the Public is a Washington, DC based non-profit that is “dedicated to public engagement in scientific research and education.”

See the complete Society for Science & the Public profile


Oxford University Press Logo

Oxford University Press - Oxford University Press is “the world’s largest university press with the widest global presence” and has U.S. offices in New York, NY and Cary, NC.

See the complete Oxford University Press profile


Everlane Logo

Everlane - Everlane is a LA and SF based “luxury clothing design and manufacturing company” that “aims to provide low-cost, high-quality goods by cutting out middlemen.”

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Trailer Park Logo

Trailer Park - Trailer Park is a Hollywood, CA based full-service entertainment marketing agency that serves “a broad spectrum of clients."

See the complete Trailer Park profile


Better Government Association Logo

Better Government Association - The Better Government Association, a Chicago, IL based non-profit that “works for integrity, transparency, and accountability in government."

See the complete Better Government Association profile


Sympoz Logo

Sympoz - Sympoz is a Denver, CO based company that aims to create “an environment where you can watch, interact, and learn from renowned experts on your own schedule.”

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Wowzers Logo

Wowzers - Wowzers is a Chicago, IL based company that offers a cloud-based adaptive learning platform that teaches kid math in the form of a video game.

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Sqarespace Logo

Squarespace - Squarespace is a New York, NY based company that provides “elegant solutions that set new standards for online publishing.”

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Zulily Logo

Zulily - Zulily is a Seattle, WA based company that offers “daily deals for moms, babies and kids.”

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InterAction Logo

InterAction - InterAction, is a Washington, DC based non-profit that “seeks to shape important policy decisions on relief and long term development issues."

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C-4 Analytics - C-4 Analytics is based in Saugus, MA and they offer services ranging from social media strategy to SEO to advertising analytics.

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Wireless Generation Logo

Wireless Generation - Wireless Generation is a Brooklyn, NY based company that is at the forefront of education technology, and they have a ton of job opportunities.

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Forbes Logo

Forbes - Forbes has some great opportunities for new grads, so check them out and get started on making that billionaires list.

See the complete Forbes profile


Everyday Health Logo

Everyday Health - Everyday Health provides “consumers, healthcare professionals, and brands with content and advertising-based services," and they're hiring.

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Total Beauty Media Group Logo

Total Beauty Media Group - Total Beauty Media Group is a Santa Monica, CA based company that aims to "inspire all consumers to live beautiful lives," and they're hiring.

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Macmillan Logo

Macmillan - Macmillan is the public face of a ton of U.S. publishers owned by a German media company, and they have a ridiculous number of job opportunities.

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Internet Brands Logo

Internet Brands - Internet Brands is based in El Segundo, CA and they manage web properties in a variety of verticals. They're hiring for a ton of jobs right now.

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Brafton Logo

Brafton - Brafton is a Boston, MA based “online news and content agency" that has a ton of entry level job opportunities for new grads.

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Travelzoo Logo

Travelzoo - Travelzoo is a travel deals site that is super focused on finding high quality deals for its users, and they have some really cool jobs for new grads.

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University of Chicago Logo

University of Chicago - The University of Chicago’s Alumni Relations & Development Division is working with us to fill 5 positions that they think are well suited for new grads.

See the complete University of Chicago profile


Time Out Logo

Time Out - Time Out is a publishing company that focuses on local travel guides and magazines. They have quite a few exciting job opportunities.

See the complete Time Out profile


Crain Communications Logo

Crain Communications - Crain Communications is a publisher that covers all kinds of different business niches, and they have some really exciting career opportunities.

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Fab.com Logo

Fab.com - Fab.com is an NYC based site that offers daily deals on design for everyone, and they have a ton of jobs available.

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CreativeFeed - If you want to work at an exciting New York City digital marketing agency, check out CreativeFeed's job opportunities.

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Phenomenon - Phenomenon is a Los Angeles, CA based creative agency with a little bit of mystery, but they're hiring for a number of entry level positions.

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Author Solutions - If you're interested in working in self-publishing, Author Solutions is the biggest name in the industry and has a ton of job opportunities.

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Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia Logo

Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia - If you enjoy Martha Stewart and want to work on the media or merchandise side, you definitely need to take a look at Martha Stewart Living Omnimedia’s Careers.

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Wolverine World Wide Logo

Wolverine World Wide - If you love shoes, but more from a functional standpoint than a fashion standpoint, then check out careers at Wolverine World Wide, based in Rockford, MI.

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American Greetings Logo

American Greetings - American Greetings seems to keep on growing, and that means lots of hiring at their headquarters in Cleveland, OH and elsewhere.

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The New Yorker Logo

The New Yorker - The New Yorker is a well known brand that tons of people want to work for, but they're mysterious about what kind of opportunities they offer for college grads.

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UrbanDaddy - You love free daily e-mails. Obviously. UrbanDaddy is one that's hiring, and they cover "the single thing you need to know every day about your city."

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The Taunton Press Logo

The Taunton Press - Based in Newton, CT, The Taunton Press may be a great place to work if you're interested in their topical areas or interested in publishing in general.

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Tasting Table Logo

TastingTable - If you love food and e-mail newsletters, than TastingTable is a great place to work whether it's on the editorial side or the ad sales side.

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Alloy Media + Marketing - Alloy Media + Marketing is headquartered in NYC and specializes in targeted youth media and promotional programs. They operate a few businesses in those areas.

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Wetpaint - Based in Seattle, WA, Wetpaint began as a wiki farm but has transitioned to "host both user-generated and professionally created content."

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GameDesk - GameDesk doesn’t have jobs posted on their Idealist page at this moment, but you have to think that some will be coming as the launch of the school gets closer.

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Lucasfilm Logo

Lucasfilm - Lucasfilm is a dream employer for many, and if you’re not insanely fanatical, you’re probably not going to be a great fit (unless you’re just really good).

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Adventure Publishing Group - If you’re immature like me, but you’d like to do something more mature with your childlike tendencies, then you might want to check out Adventure Publishing.

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Hachette Book Group - I don’t have the inside details of how Hachette Book Group’s business is doing, but I like what I see when I browse around their site.

See the complete Hachette Book Group profile


LivingSocial Logo

LivingSocial - What I love about group-buying startups like LivingSocial is that they provide fantastic job opportunities for new and recent grads.

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