Experience

I’ve been editing academic papers since 1986, when I helped produce two journals at Western Washington University. I’ve revised over 700 research papers, 11 books, and 22 doctoral dissertations – over 80% written by non-native English speakers.

In 1988-89 I taught English in Kunming, and for the next five years I taught, edited, and hosted the daily English Digest radio program in Taipei. I helped researchers at Academia Sinica and ten national and private Taiwanese universities publish their manuscripts.

I was a writing teacher for three years in the evening degree program of National Zheng Zhi University in Taipei, and taught in the University of Washington ESL program for two years. Correcting student-written papers gave me practice in figuring out the intended meaning of writers whose first languages are Chinese, Japanese, Korean, Arabic or Farsi.

I also have experience in the news media. I produced stories for National Public Radio as a freelancer, and though I worked as a general assignment reporter, most of my stories were science-oriented. That’s where I got my first taste of technical writing, and I learned how to quickly comprehend jargon in a new subject area. As a result, I feel comfortable revising papers in both the biological and social sciences.

Six examples

I’m experienced working with manuscripts in a broad range of subjects. I can take a paragraph like this (from an anthropology paper):

English language have been socially, politically, and culturally symbolized as Americanization. Historically, immigrants in the United States have lost their native language and culture for displacement of American ideology (Hakuta, 1986). Therefore, there has been a strong relationship between language and values and social and cultural identity in the United States. More importantly, adult immigrants have a tendency to be isolated from the host society because of severe discrimination (Fishman, 1989; Wong, 1987) even if many are highly motivated to acquire a second language and integrated into the new society (Schumann, 1986; Peirce, 1993).

and turn it into this:

Historically, US immigrants have been required to give up their native languages and cultures in return for accepting American ideology (Hakuta, 1986). Learning English stands as a social, political, and cultural symbol of Americanization, the result of influential relationships between language, values, and social and cultural identity. There is a tendency for adult immigrants to become isolated from their host societies because of racial and linguistic discrimination (Fishman, 1989; Wong, 1987), which often deters even the most highly motivated individuals from acquiring English and integrating into their new homelands (Pierce, 1993; Schumann, 1986).

Here’s original text from a paper describing a bacterial infection experiment:

Results: mgrB gene alterations (32/49, 65.3%) was the major colistin-resistant mechanism, followed by variation of crrB (57.1%), pmrB (32.7%), phoQ (20.9%), pmrA (10.2%), and phoP (8.2%) genes. 42.9% isolates (21/49) harbored IS elements (ISKpn26, ISEcp1, IS10R, IS903B, and ISKpn14) in mgrB or the surrounding region of crrCAB, indicating the association between ISs and colistin resistance. Colistin-resistant frequencies significantly increased in K. pneumoniae laboratory strain with the plasmids carrying different ISs from clinical strains.

Revised:

Results: mgrB gene alterations (32/49, 65.3%) were identified as the major colistin-resistant mechanism, followed by variations in crrB (57.1%), pmrB (32.7%), phoQ (20.9%), pmrA (10.2%) and phoP (8.2%) genes. Further, 21 of the 49 tested isolates (42.9%) contained the IS elements ISKpn26, ISEcp1, IS10R, IS903B or ISKpn14 in mgrB or in the surrounding region of crrCAB, indicating an association between these ISs and colistin resistance. The frequencies of insertional mutations conferring colistin resistance increased significantly in colistin-susceptible K. pneumoniae laboratory strains, with plasmids carrying different ISs from clinical strains.

Original:

About 75–80% people infected with ZIKV are asymptomatic.5, 13 Commonly reported clinical manifestations in symptomatic cases include low fever (37.4–38.0°C), macular or maculopapular rash, finger or wrist arthralgias, headache, photophobia, and conjunctivitis.14, 15 Many of these clinical manifestations are dengue-like or chikungunya-like and are difficult to differentiate from these flavivirus infections. The incubation period of ZIKV until symptom onset is unknown, but might be between 2 and 14 days according to other flavivirus infection cases.16 ZIKV infections cause self-limiting illness and usually resolve in 3 to 7 days.5, 8, 14 The hospitalization rate after ZIKV infection is low and ZIKV-related fatality is rare. ZIKV can be also transmitted sexually by person-to-person.17

Revised:

Of those individuals infected with ZIKV, 75–80% are asymptomatic.5,13 In symptomatic cases, commonly reported clinical manifestations include low fever (37.4–38.0°C), macular or maculopapular rashes, finger or wrist arthralgias, headaches, photophobia, and conjunctivitis.14,5 Many of these manifestations are dengue-like or chikungunya-like, and thus difficult to differentiate from other flavivirus infections. The precise incubation period to symptom onset is unknown, but for other flavivirus infection cases it is between 2 and 14 days.16 ZIKV infections generally result in self-limiting illnesses that are usually resolved within 3 to 7 days.5,8,14 The post-ZIKV infection hospitalization rate is low, and ZIKV-related fatalities are rare. There is evidence indicating that ZIKV can be sexually transmitted.17

Here’s an abstract from a sociology manuscript:

Religion has been long neglected in the literature in migrant-workers studies and in particular how religion implicates into the living experience and subjectivity construction of migrant-workers in transformational China. Addressing this gap, this paper seeks to explore the dynamics of subjectivity construction of migrant-worker Christians, with an empirical focus on the Christian churches in Shenzhen. Although migrant-worker Christians are subjected to state’s institutional arrangement and the exploitation of global capital, they are not entirely passive recipients of this arrangement, and are capable of manoeuvring religious values to re-interpret actually existing social inequalities and labour alienation. However, restrained by the multiple differential status imposed on migrant-workers, they are unable to reconstruct their subjectivity through the symbolic meanings offered by Christianity. This paper sheds light on the relationship between individual’s religious construction and the society of industrial capitalism in the context of China’s rapid transformation.  

My revision:

Religion has long been understudied in the migrant worker literature, especially in studies of religion in the lived experiences and subject construction of migrant workers in transformational China. To address this gap, this paper explores the dynamics of subjectivity construction among Christian migrant workers, with a focus on Christian churches in Shenzhen. Although Christian migrant workers are subjected to the state’s institutional rules and exploitation by global capital, they are not entirely passive recipients, and are capable of using religious values to re-interpret existing social inequalities and labor alienation. However, the restraints of multiple differential statuses imposed on migrant workers make it difficult for them to reconstruct their subjectivity via symbolic meanings offered by Christianity. This paper looks at the relationship between individual religious construction and industrial capitalism in the context of China’s current transformation.

An original paragraph from a fisheries science paper:

Shrimp diseases causing a mass mortality, no culturing of tiger shrimp in cold winter in Taiwan, and shrimp haemocytes, like as other invertebrate haemocytes, are very easy to breakdown, change shape, and degranulate either during in vitro culture or following centrifugation (Martin and Graves, 1985; Soderhall and Smith, 1983; Soderhall and Cerenius, 1992). For the present study, the fixed haemocytes were separately used as the immunogen to develop MAbs, and as haemocyte samples to assay. They were prepared during culturing shrimp period, and stored in MCHBSS containing 10% DMSO at -70°C before examination.  

I was asked to reduce text but preserve the technical language:

As with other invertebrates, shrimp haemocytes easily break down, change shape, and degranulate during in vitro culturing or following centrifugation (Martin & Graves, 1985; Soderhall & Cerenius, 1992; Soderhall & Smith, 1983). For the present study, fixed haemocytes were used separately as immunogen for the development of MAbs and as haemocyte samples for assays. They were prepared from cultured shrimp and stored in MCHBSS containing 10% DMSO at -70°C prior to examination.

The last one is from a biochemistry report. The original:

We previously reported that Influenza virus-like particles (VLPs) can be modified using M2 fusion with molecular adjuvants such as flagellin (FliC) and profiling to enhance the VLP immunogenicity. In this study, the influenza VLPs were obtained by co expression of four viral proteins (H5HA, N1NA, M1, and M2) in Sf9 insect cells with the additional M2 fusion protein with FliC, granulocyte-macrophage colony-stimulating factor (GM-CSF), or both GM-CSF and FliC (GM-CSF/FliC). Our results demonstrated that the FliC VLPs and GM-CSF/FliC H5N1 VLPs elicited more potent and broadly neutralizing antibodies against the homologous and heterologous strains of H5N1 viruses. Immunizations with FliC VLPs and GM-CSF/FliC H5N1 VLPs induced higher numbers of HA-specific antibody secreting cells and germinal center B cells; however, the GM-CSF H5N1 VLPs induced higher numbers of Th1 and Th2 cells. All of these molecular adjuvanted H5N1 VLPs compared to the wild type H5N1 VLPs provided better protective immunity against live virus challenges. The dual expression FliC/GM-CSF H5N1 VLP constructs were further designed to include H7 or H1H7 as the bi-subtype or triple-subtype VLPs. Immunizations with these multi-subtype H5H7 or H1H5H7 VLPs were demonstrated to induce higher titers of hemagglutinin inhibition and virus neutralizing antibodies against the multi-subtype influenza viruses. These findings may provide useful information for developing the universal influenza vaccines.

My revision:

We previously reported that influenza virus-like particles (VLPs) can be modified using M2 fusion with molecular adjuvants such as flagellin (FliC) to enhance VLP immunogenicity. For this study, influenza VLPs were obtained by co-expressing four viral proteins (H5HA, N1NA, M1 and M2) in Sf9 insect cells with an additional M2 fusion protein containing FliC, granulocyte-macrophage colony-stimulating factor (GM-CSF), or both GM-CSF and FliC (GM-CSF/FliC). According to our results, the FliC VLPs and GM-CSF/FliC H5N1 VLPs elicited more potent and broadly neutralizing antibodies against the homologous and heterologous strains of H5N1 viruses. Immunizations with FliC VLPs plus GM-CSF/FliC H5N1 VLPs induced higher numbers of HA-specific antibody-secreting cells and germinal center B cells; the GM-CSF H5N1 VLPs induced higher numbers of Th1 and Th2 cells. Compared to the wild type H5N1 VLPs, all of these molecular adjuvanted H5N1 VLPs provided better protective immunity against live virus challenges. Dual-expression FliC/GM-CSF H5N1 VLP constructs were designed to include H7 or H1H7 as bi- or tri-subtype VLPs. Our data indicate that immunizations with multi-subtype H5H7 or H1H5H7 VLPs induced higher titers of hemagglutinin-inhibiting and virus-neutralizing antibodies against multi-subtype influenza viruses. It is our hope that these findings provide useful information for developing universal influenza vaccines.

You can benefit from my 28 years of experience!