Writing, editing, proofreading & translating

sophiefetokaki at gmail dot com

I have several years’ experience as a writer, editor, and proofreader of academic and other texts. I work with PhD candidates and professional academics, many of whom are second-language English speakers. I have edited a range of academic texts published in established peer-reviewed journals, as well as consulting reports commissioned by the EU parliament. I have done a range of translation projects, mostly for university researchers. I most often translate from Greek to English, but can also translate into English from French, Spanish, and Dutch.  I write liner notes for music releases and proofread and translate texts written by the artists themselves.

Alongside academic editing and proofreading, I can help with arts funding applications and academic research proposals. I have made a number of succesful applications and proposals for arts funding and academic scholarships from organisations and funding bodies in the UK, the Netherlands, Cyprus, Iceland and Norway.

I am open to fee negotiations and can work with a sliding scale where that is necessary. If you are looking for academic proofreading, I am happy to work on a short sample of work (usually a couple of pages) free of charge, to give you an idea of what I can offer.

Below you will find some examples of my writing for album releases, as well as a couple of pieces of creative writing. At the bottom of the page are a selection of client testimonials.

I hold a Master’s degree in English Literature and a PhD in Music Performance. For more information on my qualifications, please see my CV. A full catalogue of my published creative writing can be found here. For those so inclined, my PhD thesis can be found here.

Writing Samples 

Liner notes for Subaerial, an album of improvised music by Lucy Railton and Kit Downes, released with SN Variations. Full text here.

The white-watered Hvítá runs by Skálholt Cathedral, carrying its heavy load of fine glacial sediment. It also carries, in its body, knowledge about time, about materiality and speed. If we asked it, the Hvítá could tell us how its velocity changes at different parts of its course, and that its course changes over time [...]

Translation of liner notes, track titles and poetry/song lyrics for Vassilis Philippou’s debut album Ο Ήλιος της Αυκής - Sol Aurorae. Translations of the liner notes were from Greek to English, and translations of the poetry/song lyrics were from the Cypriot langauge into English. 

I can never unsee

Those two eyes of yours
Each containing a full moon
Under eyebrows
Like sheaves of wheat

Foreword for Lucy Railton’s album Lament in Three Parts, released on Cafe Oto’s in-house label Takuroku. Excerpts from the foreword have been featured widely, including on BBC Radio 3’s programme Hear and Now and Phil Smith’s Jazz Dis-Junction on NTS Radio, where Lucy and I were both guests. Full text here.

[...] What is it about the telling that provides comfort or consolation? Perhaps it's partly in the curative power of naming, an act that can bring our experience into relief and ward off the depressive forces of nothingness, formlessness and monstrous plasticity [...]

Title and tracklist-poem for this album of improvised music released through London’s Loop Collective.

1. Forðfor.
2. (the first door)
3. below the blue whale
4. apexing -
5. now speak
6. through the rose window
7. (the second door) 
8. a calyxful
9. skystone hydrogen 
10. bonds 
11. flecked with grey 
12. peals
13. ultra mare . 

Click the image for a short collection of poetry published in Two if by Sea press’ a journey of water (US). 

To write poems
is to carry the world inside.
I don’t need to bring my books.
Poetry is wherever I look.
You are everywhere
I look.

“æ æ / αἰ αί / ay ay: lessons in love and loss,” originally written for a performance at Perdu Literary Institute, and later published by the Chicago Review of Books’ online magazine Arcturus (US), and in print in Ós Pressan literary journal (Iceland).

[...] In 1988 the Mexican songwriter Tomas Mendez released the song “Paloma Negra”. The lyrics are in Spanish, a language in which just one letter separates the present indicative (as in no vuelves, you do not return) from the negative imperative (as in no vuelvas, do not return) — such that a non-fluent speaker could easily make this slip. In “Paloma Negra” the imperative form occurs in the line aunque te amo con locura ya no vuelvas. [...]



- Academic clients -

Sophie edits and proofreads all my papers and I wouldn’t know what to do without her. She not only corrects mistakes in language, grammar, or spelling, but also gives suggestions for sentences to enhance their clarity and flow. Apart from that, she follows the arguments and narrative of the text extremely well and gives brilliant advice on how to have the meaning of the text as a whole come out better in individual sentences. I would recommend Sophie to any academic writer.

- Rodante van der Waal, PhD-candidate and lecturer in Care Ethics at the University of Humanistic Studies in Utrecht, and an independent midwife in Amsterdam

Sophie is a brilliant editor of academic papers, because she gives attention to many aspects of the writing. She considers papers as compositions which gives her approach a special quality. Next to very detailed proofreading in terms of language use, grammar, academic style, and rhetoric, she carves out a clear argument and structure, enriching the text with life, rhythm, tone, and flow.

- Anna Seidl, assistant professor at the University of Amsterdam, department of German and Scandinavian Languages & Cultures  

My collaboration with Sophie on academic papers has left me with the best impressions. I’ve always thought that editing is a challenging enough endeavour. It is a risky balance between grammatical or syntactic interventions and the respect for the style of each author. Not to mention the multiple balances that need to be maintained in the case of a translation. This is what Sophie has come to master.

- Giorgos Dimitriou, researcher in political science and discourse theory

- Artist clients -

Sophie was my first choice when thinking of a translator for my lyrics and liner notes, because of her artistic sensitivity and also deep knowledge of the English language. She managed to transmit what I wanted to say (from the Greek language and also Cypriot dialect) in a way that kept the exact meaning and the essence of my artistic approach.

- Vassilis Philippou, musician and composer 

Sophie is someone I can count on when I need help articulating emotional and conceptual ideas about my music. She is efficient and focused as a proof reader and editor, and she also has a great gift for bringing conceptual clarity to a text. On many occasions her input has strengthened my engagement with my own practice and with the meaning of the works themselves. She is skilled at helping others locate themes, meaning and structure in their work or practice, and also respectfully gives space, or gentle and intelligent guidance, where ideas have the potential to flourish. Sophie has contributed wonderful pieces of her own writing to accompany two of my musical releases, and her being a great musician surely equips her with a skill set that is unique, rare and valuable. 

- Lucy Railton, cellist and composer