I’m a certified copy editor, accredited by the Editors’ Association of Canada (EAC).

I was editor and managing editor at Self-Counsel Press. I was an instructor/facilitator for “Indexing: An Essential Art and Science” in Simon Fraser University’s Continuing Studies program. In 2012, I was a finalist for the Tom Fairley Award for Editorial Excellence.

Scholarly and academic works are of particular interest to me (especially those on history, women’s studies, and education), as well as manuscripts focused on health and medicine, pop culture, and local history.

Please visit my portfolio for a list of completed projects.


Professional Development


  • Medical Indexing with Dr. Anne Fifer (January 18 and 25, February 1, 2017)
  • Ethics for Editors (March 16, 2013)
  • Editing Fiction (January 12, 2013)
  • Advanced Proofreading (September 22, 2012)
  • Plain Language (February 18, 2012)
  • The Secrets of Syntax (October 8, 2011)


  • Editors’ Association of Canada Conference 2016: A Correction Connection
  • Editors’ Association of Canada Conference 2013: Between the Lines
  • Indexing Society of Canada Conference 2013: Mapping between the Lines
  • Editors’ Association of Canada Conference 2012: The Landscape of Canadian Language
  • Indexing Society of Canada Conference 2012: Pointing to the Future — Indexing in the Digital Age
  • Editors’ Association of Canada Conference 2011: Editing in the Age of e-Everything

“I have worked with Catherine Plear on two books so far. She was the copy editor and indexer for my book A Great Rural Sisterhood (University of Toronto Press, 2015), and I was very pleased when she agreed to work with me again, as the indexer for our edited collection Women in Agriculture (University of Iowa Press, 2017). Catherine is delightful to work with, not only because she embraced the projects with enthusiasm and skill, but also because she loves ideas and good conversation. She made my books better — both times!”

Linda Ambrose, Author, A Great Rural Sisterhood

“A project like Vancouver Confidential presents special challenges to any editor. With fourteen different voices, there’s a need to maintain their respective integrity while establishing consistent quality. As the collection’s first-line editor, my role was to liaise with the publisher, herd cats, keep the team working toward a common goal, maintain morale, etc. Catherine Plear’s contribution, by contrast, was the estimable task of getting this choir singing together in the same key. What emerged was a best-selling collection of local histories of which I am very proud. Without Catherine’s copy editing it would have been much less than it is. Her turnaround time, professional standards, patience (sweet Jesus, her patience…), and ability to add value without diminishing what was already there establish her as my go-to editor.”

John Belshaw, Editor, Vancouver Confidential

“Catherine Plear worked for me as an employee (editor, then managing editor) and freelance editor for many years. She is among the very best editors I have had the pleasure of working with: conscientious, meticulous, and on time. Among her great strengths are her ability to quickly grasp complex topics and explain them in simple language, and her ability to deal with print and digital content in any form one might imagine. I recommend her without reservation.”

Richard Day, Publisher (former), Self-Counsel Press