About me

I am a freelance indexer providing back-of-book indexing of general trade books, textbooks, and scholarly works.

My areas of education include medicine (with an emphasis in neurology, epileptology,  neuroanatomy, and neurosciences as well as general medicine and health sciences), and experimental/physiological psychology.

Special interests and hobbies provide knowledge of wine, food, cooking/culinary arts, gardening, organic farming, art/crafts (painting in acrylics), lapidary work, birding, beekeeping, and pets.

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Since I’m often asked how I arrived at my current career in indexing, I think I’ll just add that information here.

I’ve always been book-oriented and my books always had indexes.  I never really thought about where indexes came from–they just were,  always there at the end of the book when I wanted them.  Until….

I was working on an ophthalmology report and needed to check something on a very basic test.  I picked up my heavy-duty (and very heavy) ophthalmology text and opened it to the index.  No matter where I looked, I could not find what I needed–it was so basic, it just had to be in the book somewhere.  Frustration overwhelmed me and I’m sure I  was muttering something like “I could have done a better job–” and likely some expletives as well.

That was the event that started me thinking about indexes. It was the end of taking them for granted as if they sprang full-blown from…well, from where?

At home that evening I googled indexes and indexing. I found the American Society for Indexing (at that time still the American Society for Indexers) and the “About Indexing”.   The more I read about indexing, the more fascinated I became with learning about it.

Not long after that, it became apparent that I had to have a career change because of carpal tunnel and Guyon canal nerve compression.  Intensive keyboarding was a thing of the past for me.  I started lurking on the indexing listserves, and got up nerve enough to post to one asking about the keyboarding intensity in using indexing software.  I received very helpful information about that aspect of indexing–it seemed possible since some of the software could also be used with voice recognition software.

Surgery on both hands followed shortly.  In need of employment, I started teaching medical transcription at the local community college, then doing quality assurance for a medical transcription company as well.   The quality assurance work was full-time work, plus teaching, so time was limited (to say the least), but I continued to study and learn more about indexing…did my first for-pay index…and loved every minute of it.

How many people do you know whose job description includes working at home (with the cat in my lap), sipping coffee, reading books, and getting paid?

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I’m glad that I found ASI. I appreciate all the benefits that I’ve gotten through this professional organization.

I’m still indexing, loving it, and hope to have a long, long indexing career. I owe ASI a lot for my current career. I just hope that I can share some of the benefits with other aspiring indexers–pay it forward as it were.

2 Comments Add yours

  1. dimulvey says:

    I am looking to purchase the following text:
    fundamentals of us regulatory affairs, eighth edition [paperback] [asin: 0982932065
    Do have a copy and what is the price.

    1. safifer says:

      I only index–don’t sell books. Try Amazon or Regulatory Affairs Professionals Society

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