See Also—December 2019

ASI News
—Send in Your 2020 Conference Proposal
—ASI Webinar—Indexes Locorum: An Elegant Niche with Kate Mertes
Upcoming Chapter Events
—New England Chapter Fall 2019 Meeting
News from Our Members
Spotlight—Shana Milkie

ASI News

Send in Your 2020 Conference Proposal

The ASI annual conference will be held April 23-25, 2020, in lovely Raleigh, North Carolina. (Pre-conference workshops and the ASI board meeting will be on Thursday, April 22.) The conference is a great way to share your ideas and skills and to network with colleagues.

The conference committee is accepting proposals through December 20, 2019. If you need inspiration, check out the List of Suggested Topics on this page. If you have an idea for another presentation, propose it to the committee using the Conference Proposal Form.

ASI Webinar—Indexes Locorum: An Elegant Niche with Kate Mertes

Wednesday, January 15, 2020

Demand for Indexes Locorum is on the rise, and publishers are finding it hard to locate indexers able and willing to construct these finicky texts. Want to find out how to translate Cic. de or. 1.3.45 into a cogent and useful index entry? This webinar will introduce you to a whole new profitable world of indexing.

Types of Indexes Locorum:

  • Legal Citations
  • Manuscripts
  • Biblical citations
  • Classical references

Kate Mertes is sole proprietor of Mertes Editorial Serves, specializing in complex, challenging projects in law and the humanities. Kate is a winner of both the Hines Award and the ASI Award for Excellence in Indexing (twice). She has also served two terms as president of ASI.

To register for the webinar, visit this page.

Upcoming Chapter Events

New England Chapter Fall 2019 Meeting

Saturday, December 7
10 am – 3:30 pm

Hanover, New Hampshire

SKY_IndexThe Fall meeting program includes:
Using Tablet Computers for Indexing. Marking up proofs for indexing is a mainstay practice for many indexers, yet many of us prefer greener work habits and enjoy the portability of our work. Enter the tablet! With special electronic "pens" indexers can mark up proofs on screen and use their tablets as a second monitor while inputting index terms. Tablets can also be used for other business practices such as signing contracts. Michelle Guiliano and Joan Shapiro will demonstrate how they use iPads for indexing in conjunction with Windows-based computers. We’ll even do a live demonstration of marking up an excerpt from The Invention of the Sewing Machine (see below).

Indexing Exercise and Review. Peer reviews are a helpful way to see the work of other indexers and discuss the challenges of indexing. This indexing exercise goes beyond the typical peer review process by having all attendees prepare a short index prior to the meeting. We will all be indexing two chapters from the book The Invention of the Sewing Machine by Grace Rogers Cooper, and at the meeting we will discuss the similarities and differences between our indexes.

Visit the event website for a full schedule and registration details.

News from Our Members

ASI member Terry Casey (at the podium) and Heather Hedden presented on the subject of indexing with a taxonomy at the annual Taxonomy Boot Camp conference in Washington, DC, on November 4. Presenting to an audience of nearly 100 industry professionals, Terry and Heather explained the benefits of manual over automated indexing, how to design a taxonomy to better serve indexers' needs, what to include when creating policy or guidelines, and how to find an indexer on the ASI website.


Our Spotlight this month is Shana Milkie, chair of ASI’s Training Course Planning Committee. If you would like to be in the Spotlight, or would like to nominate someone for it, please contact the editor, Roseann Biederman.

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

I live in Ann Arbor, Michigan. My husband and I are originally from Dearborn, Michigan, so we’ve moved a whopping 40-minute drive west from our hometown. Our household also includes our three children (two college students and one high school student), three cats, and one dog.

What is your educational background?

I studied mechanical engineering at the University of Michigan.

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

I enjoy reading (of course!), sewing, knitting, crocheting, and walking our dog. Ann Arbor is currently wrestling with a plume of dioxane-contaminated groundwater, and I participate in a government-citizen coalition to help remediate that.

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

CindexI worked at Ford Motor Company as a mechanical engineer for seven years. I left when we were expecting baby number two. I indexed part-time for several years while the kids were young, and now I index full-time.

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

While expecting my second child, I went to the library to explore work I could do at home. The very first entry in one of those “work from home” books was Abstracting and Indexing, which made bells go off in my head. There was contact information for ASI in the career profile, so I sent off for membership and training information. I joined ASI and got started in the USDA course. This was around 1998-1999, so everything was done by mail. I hung out my shingle as an indexer in March of 2000.

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

I am proud and grateful to belong to the organization that represents indexing and indexers nationally. It only seems natural to pool our resources and talents to raise the profile of and contribute to best practices for our profession. Incidentally, I got my first paying job through my ASI membership. While I was still studying the USDA course, an information science professor at Wayne State University in Detroit found my membership listing. She needed participants for a panel she was putting together on indexing. I explained that I was still a student but would be glad to participate. She must have been desperate for people to fill out the panel, because she still wanted me. One of the other panelists turned out to be an editor at a publisher who not long after offered me my first paid indexing project.

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