This section has advice to writers contemplating hiring or accepting third-party help from editors or proofreaders. It’s a complex relationship of technical skill, personal power and autonomy mixed up with senses of self-worth and confidence and ego. Knowing the possibilities of the relationship is a way to navigate some pretty tricky waters.

For academic writers (students especially) there are strict rules put in place to ensure that work submitted for assessment is original. Anti-plagiarism software is just getting more and more pervasive: it’s hard to prove that your work is your own once an algorithm has raised a flag. Knowing the rules is a big plus.

Here are some of my thoughts about how to use third parties to make your work the best it can be.

Editing, language and writing