SD/PEN Member Profile: Kerri De Rosier

SD/PEN regularly selects members at random and profiles their background and experience in an interview-style blog post. These are valuable opportunities for members to introduce themselves to other members and prospective clients through this newsletter and on SD/PEN’s website and social media outlets. This profile features Kerri De Rosier, an experienced editor, writing expert, and owner of Make the World Write.

How do you describe what you do to someone whom you’ve just met at a networking function?

I mainly do editing work right now; I edit Smooth Jazz News and am the editor in chief for California Music Teacher magazine. I just finished editing a book about orthodontia—as a big-picture writer and editor, I feel that I can lend my editing skills to just about anything. I also have launched a writing workshop called “The Secret Life of Commas and Other Writing Mysteries.” The class covers common writing errors, punctuation, and writing style.

What made you decide to become a professional editor?

After I left my job as a technical writer at Xerox, I found myself being called upon for editing jobs. I worked for HP, Intuit, and AOL and gradually honed my editing skills. I’ve worked as a freelance writer/editor since 1995, the year my daughter was born.

Which quality or qualities would you most like your clients or professional colleagues to remember you for?

That I am thorough and fair. As I stated previously, I’m a big-picture person, which means that I can step back from what I’m editing and identify structural issues and clarify inconsistencies and vague language—in addition to correcting punctuation, spelling, verb tense, and sentence structure. I put myself into the role of the reader.

Tell us about a book you recently read that you would recommend.

Unsheltered by Barbara Kingsolver. Kingsolver is an amazing writer who pulls you in with her imagery. And if you haven’t read Flight Behavior, do. The first paragraph of that book is one of the best I’ve ever encountered.

Describe a volunteer activity or cause you are involved in.

I am chair of the Point Loma Summer Concerts series. Our all-volunteer board presents five free concerts for the community. I’ve been involved since its inception in 2001 and am entering my second year as chair. The concerts are a wonderful community bonding experience, and we also support music education in the schools through our raffle program.

Describe one thing about yourself that most people don’t know.

As a “choir geek,” I felt it was important for my daughter Sarah’s high school to have a choir program. The school had been well known for its choir program during the 1970s and 1980s and had failed to maintain a choir program since then. But Sarah was a “band geek,” so we were dedicated band parents and put all our efforts there. After she graduated, I decided to commit myself to getting choir going at the high school. My friend and I started an after-school choir, and then I helped get choirs started at the middle schools feeding the high school. I’m proud to say that with the support of principals and dedicated teachers, six years later, choir is still going strong at Point Loma High, Dana Middle School, and Correia Middle School. 

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