Skills and experience
- Originally a chemistry graduate, I have maintained an overall awareness of wider scientific and technological developments and am willing to undertake indexing in any scientific discipline, provided the treatment isn't excessively mathematical, though astronomy is my first preference.
- I have a thorough knowledge of embedded indexing techniques, using either adapted Microsoft Word tools or XML (Extensible Markup Language) Editors for the fastest possible turnaround.
- For freestanding index compilation, sorting and formating, I use CINDEX software from Indexing Research in the USA.
- I am used to international collaboration involving time zone differences and to working in either British or American English.
- After ten years working in IT and three for an IT publisher, I am familiar with a broad range of computer technologies
- As well as being a fast and reliable indexer, I have helped design distinctive index
layouts for several publishers, added value to indexed titles with detailed copyediting
and proofreading and suggested workarounds for several production problems.
This doesn't reflect on previous editing, or on the professional proofreading that often goes on in parallel with indexing, but it's widely recognised that indexers are often a book's first independent readers and, as such, they can spot ambiguities others have missed. Also the juxtapositions of alphabetic sorting usually reveal some previously hidden inconsistencies. My contribution (only ever offered after checking it would be welcomed) is just to help bring first-class books even closer to perfection!
"The publishers have put a lot of effort into every detail of this book... If I had to pick one element that illustrates this attention to detail, it would be the index. Bill Johncocks has done an excellent job in producing an index that adds real value to the book. I wish more publishers would follow this example and employ professional indexers."
Which was very kind of him, although I now look back on that early index with some embarrassment... It's also rather ancient and I suppose this is no place for modesty so here are some more up-to-date quotes:
You did a fine job, and I am unhesitatingly recommending you for anything that crops
---- Publisher 1, 19/10/06
The index looks great
---- Publisher 2, 02/02/07
I have had a look through the index, and it looks excellent – that coupled with your previous
corrections/comments will really improve this book!
---- Publisher 3, 20/04/07
The authors were very happy with the index, and I told them
you were happy with their book, so we're all happy!
Thanks, and I look forward to working with you again soon
---- Publisher 2, 26/04/07
Your indexes are superb (if you’d like a testimonial, I’m happy to oblige), so given the
opportunity of course we’d like to have you index all of our products.
---- Publisher 4, 07/05/07
Crikey that was quick!
---- Publisher 5, 28/06/07
We are very happy with the indexes and hope that you'll be able to do the remaining 6
---- Publisher 5, 09/07/07