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A title heading with Mark Allen Editorial in yellow letters superimposed on a photo of a bookshelf.

Quick question? Click on the green chat box at lower right. Or check out my growing list of FAQs.

Clarity, consistency, elegance

A good copy editor takes on the  role of reader, making sure the author’s point is understood. I clean documents of distracting typos, I match usage to preferred style, and I make sure clarity is achieved so honest ideas come through.


Photo by Ann Allen

What's new

  • I talked about one of my favorite topics — dictionaries — with members of the Association of Earth Science Editors as they gathered here in Columbus. The best part of being an editor is the lifelong learning it provides, and I learned a few things about rocks and climate change at my first in-person conference in two years. Interested in learning all about the current state of dictionaries in the U.S.? Let me know.

  • I also shared my bookshelf at the Editors Canada national conference, via Zoom, and in person at the national conference of ACES: The Society for Editing. My talk was "The Editor's Library: Essential tools for bookshelf and browser." I also created a web page for a handout with links to some of my favorite resources.

  • Along with dictionaries talk and "The Editor's Library," I'm offering two other presentations to your editorial department: "What's New in Style" is an overview of updates to the Associated Press Stylebook, the Chicago Manual of Style and the Publications Manual of the American Psychological Association, and "Edit Sober" a talk about the best advice I've heard in 35 years of editing. Let's chat.

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Words on words

In a blog entry, Editor Mark looks at Black and White and moves to capitalize those as racial terms.

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Screen Shot of @EditorMark's page on Twitter with a discussion about the origin of "popsicle."

888 tips

@EditorMark tweets regular short tips on editing and usage. Many past tweets are assembled together in searchable form.

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That Word Chat

Editor Mark hosts chats about all things lexical, with interesting guests live on Zoom. Here are the details about the next episode and past episodes on YouTube.

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About Mark Allen Editorial

Mark Allen has been helping others improve their writing since he was a teenage editor on his high school newspaper. He edited professionally for 20 years on newspaper copy desks and for 13 years as a freelancer. He has edited several successful university accreditation self-studies, curriculum materials on early-childhood and school-age education, scholarly papers, policy papers, daily news stories and analyses, marketing documents, blog entries, business-to-business and business-to-consumer emails, nonfiction books, and more. He has written extensively for Nationwide Financial, and he wrote a history of the Ohio State University College of Pharmacy.

Past and present clients

One of the great joys of freelance editing is the variety of clients it brings me in contact with, affording opportunities to learn with every one. Here are some of the organizations I've head the pleasure of editing for or presenting to over the years:

  • Allstate

  • American Journalism Project

  • Apple Tree Institute


  • Cheapism

  • Cities of Service

  • Columbus State Community College

  • The Conference Board

  • Equity Methods LLC

  • FiveThirtyEight

  • Gear Stream

  • Harvard Education Publishing Group

  • Hudson Institute

  • International Center for Transitional Justice

  • International Fact-Checking Network

  • Kennedy Krieger Institute

  • The Knight Foundation

  • Learning Mate

  • Lingofy

  • Microsoft

  • MIT Horizon

  • National Endowment for the Humanities

  • National University

  • Nationwide Financial

  • Nicholas Institute for Environmental Policy Solutions

  • The Ohio State University

  • Plan International

  • Red Flag Group

  • Roto

  • The Skoll Foundation

  • Trilogy Education

  • UMass Transportation Center

  • United Nations High Commissioner for Human Rights

  • University of Maryland School of Nursing

  • Virtual Lab School

  • Women Enabled International


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Word FAQs


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Columbus, Ohio


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