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Comment by everbetter on Interesting (or semi-interesting) part time jobs? · 2014-12-31T17:23:49.694Z · score: 2 (2 votes) · LW · GW

Since you mentioned that you can write well, you might consider freelance editing of academic papers, manuscripts and theses/dissertations. I have been editing part-time and find it to be a rewarding way to earn extra money; you are exposed to a constant stream of cutting-edge research and ideas, and are able to assist the authors in further improving their texts. When I edit a dissertation, I enjoy the thought that I may be the only person on earth, apart from the author, who has read the entire work.

Another significant advantage to editing work is that it is conducted entirely online and doesn't require a physical presence, which saves on commuting time and permits a very flexible schedule. Typically, freelance editing pays by the word count, rather than by the duration of effort, so it's a good choice for those who are self-motivated and efficient.

Editing duties and expectations can vary widely, and financial compensation is proportional to the level of effort contributed by the editor. Simple line-editing pays the least, and involves correcting typos and grammatical errors, and ensuring that the text makes sense. The most advanced forms of editing involve substantially rewriting the entire work, reorganizing the logic, indicating where information is missing, etc.

Depending on the specific document I'm editing, I have earned anywhere from $10/hour (rarely) up to $50/hour (rarely), with an average of ~$25-$35/hour. Typically, the clients whose works I edit expect the lower-end services (proofreading and polishing), rather than extensive rewrites. Pay rates for editing can vary significantly, and will depend on whether you're recruiting clients yourself or working for an established company.

Online venues such as Odesk are an option, although from my past experience, that site often involves numerous people bidding on a single job, resulting in ridiculously low fees charged. I located my own editing position with an established company using the FlexJobs site, which charges a small fee for membership.

You may face a challenge in locating an editing position with a company, if you do not yet have an advanced degree; editing positions are often competitive, and editing houses like to advertise the pedigrees of their editors. However, if your editing skills are demonstrably sharp, it is quite possible that you can interest an employer in hiring you, despite your lack of a degree.

Good luck with your job search! :)