It’s a mostly well-kept secret that Hourigan & Co. has been looking for an assistant for a while now. This is a long-term search—we’re looking for a very specific and exceptional kind of person, for whom this could represent a real career and lifestyle opportunity.

We’ve recently become extremely busy—which is great!—making this search a little more urgent than it has been. If you or anyone you know fits the description below, please do get in touch.

The opportunity

Hourigan & Co. is a growing editorial consultancy based in Melbourne, Australia. Its director, Ben Hourigan, is looking for an ongoing working relationship with a superior English-language editor with native-level English ability, from a developing country (e.g. the Philippines, India), where the compensation offered will represent a significant earning opportunity. For the right applicant, we hope this has the potential to become an engagement offering close to full-time hours and/or compensation.

What we do

Our clients are businesses, organizations, and people seeking transformation of their raw material into high-quality work of a commercially publishable standard. These clients have included several high-profile Australian and international businesses, as well as many self-published authors and small businesses.

Typical tasks we undertake include:

  • editing (including substantial rewriting and fact checking)
  • proofreading
  • document formatting (especially theses)
  • e-book publishing using Markdown and LaTeX
  • site deployment and content management using WordPress
  • design commissioning

We give extensive feedback to authors during the editing process, and aim to be coaches and mentors.

Who we’re looking for

Ideal qualities for a successful applicant include:

  • A strong work ethic, self-discipline, and commitment to meeting deadlines and time budgets.
  • An orientation to independent learning: if you encounter a problem, you research the solution before asking others for help.
  • Comfortable working online and communicating exclusively or almost exclusively by email, instant-messaging, and project-management software (e.g. Basecamp, Trello).
  • A bachelor’s or higher degree in the humanities, with a high average grade (80%+). Masters’ or other higher degrees are looked on favorably.
  • Previous experience (in-house or freelance) or accreditation as an editor.
  • Familiarity with use of style guides and manuals (e.g. Chicago, Strunk & White).
  • Maintenance of a personal writing practice, ideally in fiction or creative nonfiction, including a publication history.
  • A love of reading.
  • High literary and visual aesthetic values.
  • Detailed knowledge of using Word for writing and editing, especially the effective use of heading styles and find and replace.
  • Familiarity working with e-books and technologies for formatting long documents as plain-text and/or code (Markdown, LaTeX, HTML).
  • Flexibility to work in US and British English.
  • An always-on internet connection.
  • Mac user.

Note that you do not need all of these qualities to apply. The key attributes are strong writing and editing ability, a love of language and literature, and a willingness to learn, particularly about the technology-related aspects of the work. You will receive instruction in and support with these aspects if you need it.

While experience with code-based writing technologies is not essential, it is essential that the editor have a willingness to work in a text editor (e.g. Sublime Text, Textmate, Notepad++), learn about code and markup languages, and to do work on the command line. While Mac users are strongly preferred, Linux users are also invited to apply. Windows-only users need not apply unless they have prior experience with Markdown, LaTeX, or a Unix command line, or a strong motivation to learn these technologies.


Rates may range between USD 10 and USD 20 per hour depending on skills and experience.

What you should do next

Applicants should find out how to contact us on this site, then send a résumé, a cover letter or message addressing the ideal qualities listed above, a description of their computing environment, and examples of past work. Only applicants who reach the next stage will receive further contact.

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Ben Hourigan is an Australian-born novelist and freelance editor. His novels Kiss Me, Genius Boy (2011) and My Generation’s Lament have been Kindle bestsellers, reaching #9 and #10 in the World Literature > Australia & Oceania category. Since 2013, Ben has worked full-time at Hourigan & Co. while writing his third book. As Hourigan & Co. grows, Ben continues to work with businesses and institutions while cultivating a growing practice in editing, publishing, marketing, and mentoring for self-published authors.