See Also—August 2018

Are you enjoying your summer? Depending on where you live, the summer sun may invite you outdoors to enjoy its rays or chase you inside seeking air conditioning. However you are spending your summer, we hope you'll find time for relaxation and fun.

ASI Webinar: Indexing Lives: Savvy Strategies for Indexing Biographies and Memoirs with Connie Binder
Upcoming ASI Chapter Events
Western New York
Pacific Northwest
Chicago-Great Lakes
New Indexers May Enter to Win the Sherry Smith Award
In Memoriam: Janet Mazefsky
Spotlight—Judy Staigmiller

ASI Webinar: Indexing Lives: Savvy Strategies for Indexing Biographies and Memoirs
with Connie Binder

Wednesday, August 29, 2018

Biographies are delightful to read, but present special challenges to the indexer. The genre includes autobiographies, memoirs, biographies devoted to one main character, works about two or more characters linked thematically, and even books about corporate entities written in a biographical style.

During this webinar, Connie will provide an overview of the issues indexers commonly encounter when indexing biographies and provide strategies for dealing with them. For examples, we’ll peek into biographies she has indexed, as well as look at perspectives from other indexers.

Find more information on what you will learn and register here.

Upcoming ASI Chapter Events

Western New York Chapter Fall Meeting

Saturday, September 8, 2018

10 a.m. – 3 p.m.
Tompkins County Public Library, Ithaca, NY

In the morning session, Pilar Wyman will present on Embedded Indexing: Tips and Techniques, Software Programs, and Best Practices. There will be demonstrations and plenty of time for questions. You are invited to bring your laptop for this interactive workshop. See the July newsletter for more details.

Pacific Northwest Chapter 2018 Fall Meeting

Saturday, September 15

Springhill Marriott Suites
Vancouver, WA (a 15-minute drive from the Portland, OR airport)

The deadline for discounted lodging is August 15, and the deadline for early-bird registration rate is August 31. Sessions include Indexing in Digital Environments, New Tax Law, Disaster Planning for Your Business, and a “Knotty Bits” group discussion.

Read more in the June newsletter or go to the PNW website for more information and a link to the registration packet. Also see below for the Sherry Smith Award to help new indexers attend this conference.

The Chicago-Great Lakes Chapter Fall 2018 Workshop


Friday, October 26–Saturday, October 27

Hilton Garden Inn
Des Plaines, Illinois

Sessions include Indexing Names, Genealogical Indexes, How to be the Interface between Publishers and Digital Indexing Techniques, CUP/XML WordEmbed, Brilliantly Structured Indexes Redux. Read more in the June newsletter visit the Chicago/Great Lakes Chapter website for details (including hotel accommodation information) and registration.

New Indexers May Enter to Win the Sherry Smith Award

ASI_SunglassesThe Sherry Smith Award of the Pacific Northwest Chapter of the American Society for Indexing will grant $100 to help one new indexer per year attend a PNW fall conference. The purpose of the award is to help emerging indexers experience the benefits of networking with other indexers while we harness your ideas and energy to invigorate future conferences. Deadline to apply is August 16.

To be eligible, you must:

  1. Be currently enrolled in an indexing course for initial training in indexing. This includes the ASI Training in Indexing course, the UC Berkeley Extension Indexing course, or individual instruction from an established professional indexer. OR
  2. Be in your first year after completion of one of the courses above, as of the date of the annual conference. AND
  3. Be willing to volunteer for a one year period for the Program Team, which is a group of indexers who help plan the fall conference.

Application is by email indicating your name, location, course/teacher, completion date if applicable, and contact information so that we can verify accuracy.

The winner, selected by random drawing from the pool of applicants who meet the criteria, will be awarded $100. Conference attendance is required. Prior winners are ineligible.

In Memoriam: Janet Mazefsky

The passing of Janet Mazefsky in late June has saddened many ASI members. Janet, originally from Pittsburgh, moved to New York City in the early 1980s. She was a full-time indexer for H.W. Wilson Company and later Thomson Reuters, and in addition indexed as a freelancer. Yet she still had time to devote to ASI, serving as the president of the New York City Chapter and in other capacities for the chapter.

A memorial service for Janet will be held in September, the exact date to be announced later. Memorial donations can be made to Transitional Services, Inc./Marty Enrichment Fund, a charity created in memory of Janet’s brother Marty.


In the Spotlight this month is Judy Staigmiller, who has been indexing for a few years. If you would like to be in the Spotlight or nominate someone else, contact the editor, Ælfwine Mischler.

Where do you live now? Where are you originally from? Do you share your home with pets or family?

I live in Bozeman, Montana. I grew up on a cattle ranch south of Great Falls, Montana, in an area known as Eden. I walked or rode horseback to a one-room country school house that had a water pump, two outhouses, teeter totter, swing set, and a horse barn. When I was very young, people drove to the Eden post office three times a week to get the mail, then “progress” came, and the mailman delivered to individual mailboxes on Mondays, Wednesdays, and Fridays, because he delivered to another rural community on Tuesdays, Thursdays, and Saturdays. I feel like the last of a dying breed.

I have a grown son and occasionally share my condo with my granddog, a Rottweiler-German Shepherd mix named Sophie.

What is your educational background?

I have a bachelor’s degree in Modern Languages from Montana State University, which turned out to be not very useful, but I really enjoyed it. I majored in Spanish and minored in Russian.

Do you have any hobbies, travels, volunteer work, or other interesting things to share?

I love to read, walk/hike, make quilts, and travel. I volunteer at the local Cancer Support Community and also at Eagle Mount, which is a therapeutic recreational facility. I help with the horseback riding programs.

What kind of work did you do before you studied indexing? Are you still doing that or other work in addition to indexing?

I worked at the library at Montana State University for over 30 years. I was a behind-the-scenes worker in cataloging. If someone had told me ahead of time that’s what my job would be, I would have groaned, because it would have sounded boring. I very much enjoyed the work, especially original cataloging. When I first heard of indexing in the early 1970s, I thought that it too sounded boring. Then I heard about it again many years later, and by that time I realized that I have an affinity for that sort of work, and that not everyone does.

When I was ready to move on, a friend of mine and I had a business making blank journals using the picturesque hard covers of vintage books. We kept a few of the original pages to intersperse with white pages. We sold them at craft shows and farmers markets. My former business partner and her daughter continue this at Indexing is my only gig now. I even gave up being an election judge.

When did you start indexing? When did you join ASI?

I joined ASI the beginning of 2011 so I could take the course. I dawdled getting through the course and starting my business. If I had to do it over, I would push myself harder. I got my first contract in the spring of 2015.

For you, what is the best advantage of ASI membership?

The first thing I am going to say is that I am not by nature a joiner. However I cannot imagine having gotten to the point where I am now without having had the base of general support that ASI and its chapters offer. ASI is made up of a group of enthusiastic and encouraging people who generously share knowledge, experience, and opinions. That is the best advantage.

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