My Philosophy

Why do details matter?

Will the world end if there is a colon instead of a semicolon in a reference entry? Does that heading really need to be bold rather than italic? Who cares if a typo slips through, the designer uses the wrong font, or the author writes “affect” instead of “effect”?

I do!


Reading text carefully and paying attention to small details demonstrates to readers that you care about the finished product, whether that is a novel, a scholarly journal, a brochure, or a government report. As an editor, being attentive is a crucial part of my job—catching typos, even those just as small as a missing “a” or “the,” helps make a better product and ultimately results in a better experience for readers.


Readers care about consistency. An important part of paying attention to small details is applying consistency throughout a manuscript. If “structural engineering” is abbreviated as “SE” on page 12, “SE” shouldn’t then be defined as “standard error” on page 37.


Do I really want the project managers or proofreaders I work with to have to dig through an entire manuscript to figure out, say, whether American or British spelling should be used? No! That’s why I pride myself on keeping detailed style sheets as I edit. I don’t want to waste anyone’s time having to scroll through a publication to note certain stylistic or formatting choices.

About Me

My name is Denise Foster, and I am a freelance copy editor, proofreader, and production artist with more than 10 years of experience in publishing.

I specialize in scholarly nonfiction publications, particularly in the fields of social sciences, humanities, applied sciences, life sciences, and education. I primarily edit and proofread peer-reviewed scholarly journals and nonfiction trade books.

I am extremely proficient with the AMA Manual of Style, the APA Publication Manual, The Chicago Manual of Style, and the MLA Handbook.

I am also highly skilled in page layout and desktop publishing, helping to produce scholarly journals, books, white papers, and reports. I am proficient in the following software:

  • Adobe Acrobat
  • Adobe Illustrator
  • Adobe InDesign
  • Adobe Photoshop
  • eXtyles (Inera)
  • MathType
  • Microsoft Excel
  • Microsoft PowerPoint
  • Microsoft Word

I am also familiar with XML, HTML, and CSS.

NOTE: I do not provide developmental editing. Developmental editing may best be described as “big picture” editing—coordinating and editing a project from the rough manuscript to the final publication, incorporating input from authors and reviewers.



I'd love to use my publishing expertise to help you with your business needs!

Copyediting includes:

    • Adding coding/markup for typesetter/composition
    • Checking all cross-references
    • Checking spelling, grammar, punctuation, syntax, and word usage
    • Clarifying meaning
    • Eliminating jargon
    • Establishing consistency and implementing house style
    • Polishing language
    • Providing a detailed style sheet to document choices for style, format, and word usage
    • Querying authors regarding inconsistencies, apparent errors, and unclear or awkward phrasing
    • Reviewing for factual accuracy
    • Reviewing for inconsistencies, errors, and omissions
    • Searching online databases for bibliographic or other information to fact check references
    • Standardizing spelling to American or British English
    • Using customized macros and styles in Microsoft Word for electronic/onscreen editing

Proofreading includes:

    • Reading “blind” or “cold” (not reading against previous copy)
    • Reviewing page proofs (following editing and composition) for the following:
      • Accuracy
      • Adherence to editorial style guide
      • Chapter and section titles
      • Colors
      • Consistency
      • Cross-references
      • Figure and table elements
      • Fonts
      • Headings
      • Overall page design
      • Paragraph and page sequence
      • Running heads
      • Table of contents
      • Typographical errors

For editorial work, my rate depends on the type of project, the services offered, and the timeline. Please contact me for a project estimate. Full pricing information will be provided after I have evaluated your manuscript. Price per page is based on a standard page length of 250 words per page, double spaced.

I accept payment via PayPal or in the form of a business check or bank wire transfer.


My composition and layout services include the production of scholarly journals, books, white papers, and reports.

My rates do not include the purchase of fonts or royalty-free images. Please contact me for a project estimate.

I accept payment via PayPal or in the form of a business check or bank wire transfer.


Check out my blog for editorial and print production tips!
See blog


My past and current clients include:

  • Academy of Nutrition and Dietetics
  • American Mathematical Society
  • American Psychological Association (APA) [for Cenveo Publisher Services]
  • American Society of Civil Engineers (ASCE) [for Lumina Datamatics]
  • Association for Behavior Analysis International (ABAI)
  • Ave Maria Press
  • Begell House
  • Editage (CACTUS Communications)
  • Fairview Health Services
  • Journal of Orthopaedic & Sports Physical Therapy
  • MPS North America
  • National Science Teachers Association (NSTA) Press
  • Optical Society of America [for Lumina Datamatics]
  • Out of House Publishing
  • Pearson Technology Group
  • Penn State University Press
  • RosettaBooks
  • Taylor & Francis [for Apex CoVantage]
  • Wiley



Here are some of the projects I am most proud of. Take a look!


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