How to Make Money From Home With Freelance Book Indexing

Updated on May 26, 2020
WriteAngled profile image

I have a PhD in biomedical science and have worked as a scientific researcher, faculty librarian, and scientific information specialist.

Book Indexing Is a Home Business Opportunity

Book indexers earn their living by providing a useful service to authors, publishers and readers—yet many people have never of this profession. Indexing books and other materials is, however, a useful skill that lets individuals from all sorts of backgrounds use their knowledge and skills to earn money in the comfort of their own homes.

Have you ever bought a book to use for reference purposes and been frustrated to discover that you cannot find the information you need easily because there is no index in the back? In the case of academic books, indexes are considered to be so important that many university librarians will be less likely to purchase a book for their library if it does not contain an index. Quality publishers are aware that a good index is a good selling point for a book.

Many people are surprised to learn that back-of-book indexes are produced by human beings. Book indexers usually work from home on a freelance basis. Some do it as a full-time career, others use it to supplement income from other activities or pensions, or as a means to earn some money while staying at home with small children.

Book indexing is not a get-rich-quick scheme, nor is it a way to passive income. However, it produces a reasonable return for the time required. Typically, publishers pay $2-5 per page indexed. A 350-page book will therefore earn the indexer $700-1750. Working full-time, a competent indexer, with some experience, should be able to index such a book within a week.

Every one of these books has an index in the back.
Every one of these books has an index in the back. | Source

Can’t Machines Do the Job?

Some have argued that book indexing is a dead profession because it is possible to produce an index automatically. That is not true.

A computer can produce a concordance. This is a list of every word that appears in a book, with a page reference for each appearance. A concordance can be manipulated to some extent; for example, to remove unwanted “stop words” such as a, the, some, perhaps.

However, human book indexers provide further important input, by making connections and by classifying entries into related hierarchies. One of the most important tasks of the indexer is to decide what is relevant.

Extract from index to a book on Cornish history produced by WriteAngled
Extract from index to a book on Cornish history produced by WriteAngled

The Value of a Human Indexer

Here is an example. Imagine a book containing the diaries and letters of the composer Jean Sibelius.

On April 16, 1915, Sibelius made the following diary entry: “Today at ten to eleven I saw 16 swans. One of my greatest experiences! Lord God, the beauty! They circled over me for a long time. Disappeared into the solar haze like a gleaming silver ribbon.” On December 8 of the same year, his 5th symphony had its première.

Later, in a letter to a friend, he stated that he considered one of the dominant themes in that symphony to be a “swan hymn”. This suggests that his sighting of the swans could well have been the inspiration for that theme.

Now, just suppose, that in another diary entry Sibelius wrote (he didn’t!), “Walked by the lake today and fed some of my sandwiches to the ducks. It was cold, so I soon went back home and worked a little on some songs.”

A machine-produced concordance would have entries for both “swans” and “ducks”. A researcher, wanting to find the influence of animals on the composer’s music would turn eagerly to the “ducks” page and be very disappointed. A human indexer would realise that the mention of ducks is a passing reference that has no particular relevance, but that the mention of swans is a key concept to understanding more about the 5th symphony. Therefore, a human indexer would make an index entry for “swans”, referencing both the diary entry and the letter, but not for “ducks”.

An indexer also tailors references to the target readership of the book. Sometimes, authors forget that some of their specialist terminology is not easy to understand or is less commonly used. A medical book intended for the general public might have references to “varicella”. The indexer will realise that most non-medical readers are more likely to search in the index for “chicken pox” so will help such readers with a cross-reference: “chicken pox see varicella.”

Interview With a Book Indexer

What Do You Need to Become an Indexer?

Personal Qualities

In most cases, indexing is a second or later career. This is because an indexer needs to have knowledge in order to index intelligently. A good level of general knowledge and a good vocabulary are essential.

Specialist knowledge or experience, with knowledge of the associated terminology, gives an indexer an advantage in getting commissions to index specialist books. A philosophy graduate is unlikely do well in indexing an academic book on mathematical topology or quantum physics, a mathematician might not do so well with one on existential philosophy!

However, specialist knowledge does not have to mean academic knowledge. Gardening, yachting, period costumes . . . any skill, hobby or interest will entail specialist knowledge and terminology that is put to good use when indexing books about these topics.

An indexer can have an untidy desk, but a tidy and organised mind is very necessary. Having a good short-term memory is also useful, so as to avoid having to trawl backwards and forwards through existing entries.

It might sound strange, but a love of reading is not so important. Most of the time, indexers scan pages, only stopping to read when they are not quite sure what is being discussed!

Like many freelancers working from home, an indexer has to be self-motivated and able to take full responsibility for work. For some, isolation can be a problem, although mailing lists and meetings organised by indexing societies can help.


Most indexing is really simple common sense. Nevertheless, there are certain conventions that should be followed most of the time. These are contained in national and international standards on index production. It is also important to know when not to follow the rules.

Indexing Books, Second Edition (Chicago Guides to Writing, Editing, and Publishing)
Indexing Books, Second Edition (Chicago Guides to Writing, Editing, and Publishing)
There are a number of books about how to index. This one is very useful for reference.

Doing a course in indexing is helpful because of the feedback obtained from tutors. Having some form of certificate may also help an indexer to gain credibility with clients. The cost of training courses is reasonable compared to training in some other professions.

A number of courses and workshops are available, for example from:


Long ago, most indexers relied solely on a stack of blank cards and a shoe box! Each entry would be written out on a small card and placed in the box. The cards would be shuffled round and eventually sorted into the final order. Then, the whole index would be laboriously typed out.

Word processing software can be used simply to produce and manipulate entries, but producing an index in this way leaves a lot of room for error.

In “embedded” indexing, index entries are inserted in the body of the document and the final index is generated at the end, in the same way as tables of contents and bibliographies and endnotes. Embedded indexing is enabled in MS Word. A number of publishers are moving to XML-based embedded indexing. The response of indexers has been less than enthusiastic because the process is somewhat time-consuming.

Most indexers currently use dedicated indexing software. This not only makes it easier to deal with entries, but usually contains some quality control functions as well. Cindex, Sky and Macrex are currently the most popular programs. Each has a user interface that differs vastly from the others. Each of the above three programs is available as a demo or student edition. This provides enough capability to evaluate the software and even use it for small projects, such as an indexing course assignment. Each program has its enthusiastic supporters. It is best to experiment for yourself to see which is the most intuitive or useful to you.

How Easy Is it to Find Indexing Work?

As in many types of freelance work, getting the first few commissions might be difficult. If you do happen to have contacts in the publishing industry, use these as much as possible.

National indexing societies maintain listings of indexers, with information about their qualifications, experience and subjects of interest. Some directories are more newbie-friendly than others. However, membership of a society enables contacts to be made, and contacts can be key in obtaining those first commissions. Indexers who are unable to take on a particular commission are usually more than ready to recommend another colleague. Experienced indexers who have acted as mentors to beginners, will at times recommend their students if they show sufficient promise.

Before making on-spec applications to publishers, it is useful to have a few indexes completed. Consider offering your services at a low rate, or perhaps even for free in order to get those all important first indexes under your belt. Ways to gain this experience include:

  • Approaching local companies, who may have annual reports, catalogues, etc for which an index would be useful.
  • Contacting charities, local societies and voluntary organisations. Again, they may have annual reports or other publications to index. Local societies based around hobbies and interests may even have authors of new books on these subjects among their members.
  • If your knowledge is more on the academic side, you could try advertising in a local college or university. Authors of academic books are sometimes asked by publishers to produce an index, whether done by themselves or someone else. Many authors hate indexing, others are aware that it is usually better to have someone else who is not involved in the book produce the index

Can Book Indexers Index Other Things?

Most certainly! Catalogues and annual reports have already been mentioned. In addition, periodical publications such as academic journals are often indexed. Some web sites also use a book-indexing type of approach as one of the ways to help visitors find a way around the site. See below for an example. | Source

This article is accurate and true to the best of the author’s knowledge. Content is for informational or entertainment purposes only and does not substitute for personal counsel or professional advice in business, financial, legal, or technical matters.


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    • profile image

      Debasish Dutta 

      11 months ago

      I had been doing indexing for quite some time now but could you suggest some site where I could get the job directly.


    • profile image

      Anna Jean 

      12 months ago

      Abstractor/Indexer was my first job. I find abstracting difficult while indexing for me is interesting. Indexing books is part of it. There are lots of rules to follow and i miss doing those. Been searching sites where i can work back again like my first job but i know its going to be tough because i dont have the things we used for abstracting we are using softwares for that where all important terms, names, places are created and found.

    • WriteAngled profile imageAUTHOR


      4 years ago from Abertawe, Cymru

      Thank you, Stefani, will have a look!

    • WriteAngled profile imageAUTHOR


      5 years ago from Abertawe, Cymru

      Thank you, Audrey. We see indexes in so many books, but rarely stop to think how they are produced! I was also surprised when I heard, and even more surprised to find that the work producing an index is so rigorous.

    • brakel2 profile image

      Audrey Selig 

      5 years ago from Oklahoma City, Oklahoma

      Hi WriteAngled - I never knew such a job existed, and you have provided a service to readers who might have interest. Certain people might certainly fit into a category with the background to perform these tasks. I might look into it myself. I found the article easy to read and well organized. Thanks for sharing this information. Blessings, Audrey

    • WriteAngled profile imageAUTHOR


      5 years ago from Abertawe, Cymru

      Thank you. Yes there are a number of Yahoo Groups, some of which are associated with particular societies. Some of these groups are actually restricted to members of the particular society. Don't know where you are based, but if there is an indexers' society in your country, you could try contacting them. They might possibly run taster workshops, where you can try your hand at some indexing-related activities as well as ask questions of people.

    • profile image


      5 years ago

      Thank you so much for this informative post! I have a few questions that I would like to ask but I would like to get input from a group of indexers. Does such a forum or message board (or even a blog) exist? I see some Yahoo Groups, but it just does not load on my phone. I will try to make a trip to the library.

    • Beth Eaglescliffe profile image

      Beth Eaglescliffe 

      6 years ago from UK

      I had no idea that book indexing is done by humans. Your article is a fascinating read. Voted up.

    • WriteAngled profile imageAUTHOR


      7 years ago from Abertawe, Cymru

      Proper indexing as described here is a highly skilled process that is performed by humans who have knowledge of the subject matter being indexed as well as knowledge of the conventions used in indexing. While indexers use indexing software to help organise and format their work, there are no machines that can produce the same results with nil human input.

    • profile image


      7 years ago

      what are the machines involved in indenxing

    • Taleb80 profile image

      Taleb AlDris 

      7 years ago

      Informative Hub, I was surprised that Indexer does not read & just scan. Thanks for sharing.

    • LCDWriter profile image

      L C David 

      7 years ago from Florida

      This is extremely interesting. I'm bookmarking this to go back and study the links and references you've included I never thought of the need for this kind of work. Thanks for this hub!

    • Kathryn Stratford profile image


      7 years ago from Windsor, Connecticut

      I have never heard of that job, but it makes sense.

      Well-written article!

    • shai77 profile image


      7 years ago

      never even heard of this but it is so good to know. There are so many more careers people can begin doing at home these days thanks to computers. Great hub, VU & Useful.

    • WriteAngled profile imageAUTHOR


      7 years ago from Abertawe, Cymru

      Best of luck, UW! I think anyone who has done cataloguing and classification should be familiar with the concepts. I reckon the main tasks you will have will be learning the conventions used and getting to know the various types of software used. The three main ones are very different and people tend to find they love one and loathe the other two. You'll probably also learn indexing of xml files. That's something I never had to do. Most indexers I know hate it because it is a much slower process. However, at least one major academic publisher uses it.

      I'd hang fire on the portfolio until you've more or less completed the course. You may well find you already have suitable material from your course work. Also, if you are lucky and land a contract very early (I did my first index while still doing the course!), you will be able to cite that published index as an example of your work. You might also find that your course tutors will recommend you to publishers. If none of this happens, yes, you could index a book to have something to show.

      Yes, often authors are told by the publisher to take care of the index. Many authors hate the prospect of doing it themselves and so hire an indexer. However, some publishers also keep a list of indexers on their books and farm out indexing work directly. If you get onto such a list, you will obviously have more regular work.

      One aspect about which I have no clue, because I don't market myself actively as an indexer at the moment is the situation of self-published ebooks, namely whether ebooks on more-complex academic topics use indexes or not. Many would say they are not needed, because you can just search for word/phrases. However, that does not give you the "see also" connections, the preferred terms and associated "see" references and the hierarchical structure that a human indexer provides. I'll be grateful for some input here on that question if it comes up in your course.

    • Uninvited Writer profile image

      Susan Keeping 

      7 years ago from Kitchener, Ontario

      Well, I start an indexing course on November 10. Looking forward to it. I have a library background so I do not think I will find it that hard. It seems to be authors who often hire freelance indexers, or so I have been reading.

      Something I read suggested you take a book without an index and index it to use as a way to show your skills and add to your portfolio. Do you think that is a good idea?

    • Pamela99 profile image

      Pamela Oglesby 

      7 years ago from Sunny Florida

      This is an interesting article. I just assumed books were indexed when they were initially written. Thanks for the enlightening me.

    • profile image


      7 years ago

      I had an indexing course in library school, but never really thought about it as a career before. Maybe I will now though! Thanks for the info!

    • WriteAngled profile imageAUTHOR


      8 years ago from Abertawe, Cymru

      As with so many things, Viking, chance plays a part. I happened to meet an editor from a publishing company and that was my way in.

      I know a number of people who have obtained their first work by being recommended by a more experienced indexer, having met them at an indexing society event.

      I think someone who really wants to do this work will be able to find their own route to getting clients.

    • viking305 profile image

      L M Reid 

      8 years ago from Ireland

      Very interesting article about getting a job as an indexer. Sounds like it is a closed shop though

    • WriteAngled profile imageAUTHOR


      8 years ago from Abertawe, Cymru

      Cataloguing/classification skills were part of the course I did about ten years ago, which made life easier because I already had a Postgrad Diploma in Library and Info. Studies :)

      The Indexing Society of Canada makes reference to the USDA correspondence course and some others. The BIPT course also listed there is no longer available.

    • Uninvited Writer profile image

      Susan Keeping 

      8 years ago from Kitchener, Ontario

      This was very informative. I recently lost my job and I'm looking for work I can do at home. I would think my cataloguer training would come in handy. I think I'll check out what is available in Canada in terms of training.

    • Susan Miles profile image

      Susan Miles 

      9 years ago

      Interesting hub! I learned something new about how a book index is made.

    • profile image

      Deirdre R 

      9 years ago

      Really useful hub, and coincidentally something I can actually use in my day job!

    • Amelia Blick profile image

      Amelia Blick 

      9 years ago from UK

      That was such an interesting read - I learn something new everyday. As the index is the first place I turn to upon picking up a book, I've always wondered who or what put an index together and after reading this, I'm relieved to learn that there's a human dimension to putting together an index rather than a computer-generated one. Thanks for a useful article.

    • profile image


      9 years ago from Deutschland

      thx that is great

    • WriteAngled profile imageAUTHOR


      9 years ago from Abertawe, Cymru

      Skye, very belated response, sorry! "Not exciting" is an understatement. Of course it all depends on the books I get to index. Some have me weeping with boredom, while others are too interesting, and I have to discipline myself to read through them with an indexer's hat on rather than rush on as an eager reader.

      Dolores, I guess so. Part of the job is trying to decide what words a typical reader of the book might try to find in the index in order to get to the information they need and thinking of all the various cross-references ("see", "see also") that might be needed. Sometimes, it might be necessary to consider the needs of two very different reader groups for the same book, for example, clinicians and lay people. I think deciding what is relevant and important enough to be indexed is the key factor, especially when faced with limits on the space available for the index.

    • Dolores Monet profile image

      Dolores Monet 

      9 years ago from East Coast, United States

      I've often wondered about those indexes and how they are created. Sounds like an indexer is hunting key words!

    • skye2day profile image


      10 years ago from Rocky Mountains

      writeangled just checking in to say hello. How are you doing? I chatted with you in the forum. I pray you are pressing on, as well as possible.

      You are quite the gifted writer. This hub is very good and interesting. Who would have thought. You are a smart one, I would venture to guess. My mind is not organized enough I admit it. It does not sound to exciting?? I could be totally wrong just a thought. Many Blessings writeangle. Sending a virtual hug

      If you feel up to it come over and visit a hub or two. voted up and awesome

    • WriteAngled profile imageAUTHOR


      10 years ago from Abertawe, Cymru

      Thank you, everyone, for your comments. Apologies for not having responded before, but I had to take an extended break from hubbing.

    • indexmama profile image


      10 years ago from Annapolis, MD

      “Certification for Indexers, an interview with Pilar Wyman” is now available online at Denise Getz' blog "See also":

    • Niteriter profile image


      10 years ago from Canada

      Anyone who can take a subject like book indexing and turn it into an interesting read from start to finish is an ace human being in my books! Your writing skills (as well as your thought processes) are far above average.

      The value you have provided for me here is that I have now crossed book indexing off my list of "things I might someday do". I have the attention span of a grasshopper!

      Best wishes.

    • KoffeeKlatch Gals profile image

      Susan Hazelton 

      10 years ago from Sunny Florida

      Interesting hub. Great info. Something I was interested in but knew not much about

    • ramkkasturi profile image


      10 years ago from India

      Very useful information Thanks for this hub


    • Babushka profile image


      10 years ago from U.S.A.

      Very Interesting, Thank you for sharing I will never look at a Book the same way again.

    • iburahimu profile image


      10 years ago

      Thank you for explaining how the work is done. It not easy to do the indexing work. I wish I can learn the whole process so I can apply it for my books or website.

    • cashmere profile image


      10 years ago from India

      I was amongst those who thought that the indexes were computer generated. Now onwards i will pay more attention to them.

    • Mamelody profile image


      10 years ago

      Interesting hub there. The money to be made sounds good but its very complicated for me. I didn't actually know humans do indexing so this was a rather educational hub for me. Thanks for the info.

    • 2patricias profile image


      10 years ago from Sussex by the Sea

      What an interesting and unusual Hub.

      Pat's grandmother used to work at home as a book indexer, but Pat (being a child then) simply took it for granted. Now understand it required real skill.

    • LizzyBoo profile image


      10 years ago from Czech Republic

      Hello-I was just reading your hub. I never read anything like this. Very interesting and well explained. Thank you very much for sharing that with us. Thanks to you everyone can see, there is a many ways how to get some income. Very well done.


    • WriteAngled profile imageAUTHOR


      10 years ago from Abertawe, Cymru

      Hi Maryband, I agree it can be difficult to break into paid indexing. However, once you do find clients, they do keep coming back all the time. For me personally, it works best to combine indexing with another line of work, namely translation. Swapping between the two stops burnout. I tend to accept indexes with long deadlines as a break from the horrendous deadlines translators live with.

      Thank you, Larry. It is good to meet a publishing person who appreciates indexers :)

      Please, I must emphasise that the indexing software I mention is not for automatic indexing. Basically, it creates a database of all the entries made, a sort of virtual shoebox with virtual cards, which makes it easier to check and manipulate things, but it does not create the entries; that is the job of the human indexer. It also helps with quality control, because it can check for validity of cross-references etc. The relationship of indexing software versus the old shoe box and cards is perhaps analogous to that of word processing software versus a battered portable typewriter and carbon paper as far as an author is concerned.

      As for versatility, a good indexer will be able to index most subjects if the book is intended for the general public. At a specialist level, to take your example, I doubt many indexers could tackle medical and legal with equal competence unless they have education/training in both fields. Legal indexing has its own peculiar conventions, while medical indexers need to be familiar with a huge specialised terminology.

      Indexers need to be headstrong. Working with the final version of the book is essential. There is nothing worse than hearing, "Oh, we've made some changes, can you update the page numbering?" GRRRR Also, many publishers impose severe constraints, e.g. no more than 3 entries per page, no more than 2 levels of subheading. Sometimes that means either insisting on some leeway or else producing a poor index.

      The other block to a good index can be the book's author. I once accepted to index a book on a subject dear to my heart. The author tried to intervene with a list of entries he insisted was essential to include. Most were irrelevant, passing references. I produced my own index and then told the editor that I could include the author's list if she really insisted, but it would make the index far longer. In the end, she asked me to do this. It increased the index three-fold while adding no extra value. I can still hear the typesetter's screams :))

      I totally agree, some of the material most in need of indexing can be deathly boring. However, I don't find it particularly pressured. Maybe I'm lucky. My chief client for indexing works with four-week deadlines. My translation work is infinitely more pressured, often requiring me to work through the night. To be honest, I turn to indexing as a way to keep earning while having a break from the pressure of translation!

    • profile image

      Larry Norris 

      10 years ago

      I wanted to comment on this article and give my opinions--please not these are opinions. I wanted to expand a little based on my years in professional publishing. I am not an indexer and have nothing to sell here.

      An indexer is a special breed of publishing professional. Few people have the aptitude to be good at it. Good ones are very rare. They are exceptionally detailed people who can also help a publishing company in many ways over the long run because by the time they are done indexing a book they often know the book inside and out. If you hire a good indexer, you have to think "in for a penny - in for a pound" because they are a member of your team -- whether you like it or not. You want to work again and again with the good ones. You can have a good indexer who doesn't fit in with your program -- you may need to get another one who is compatible with staff -- there has to be a fit.

      In many large companies by the time the editors get to the point in a process where the index is needed, they are exhausted and often if you have your book editors doing your index, you are often shortchanging the process. A professional indexer will come in with fresh eyes and can do a great job for you-- like a closer in baseball - they can finish off a book when everyone else is exhausted.

      A good freelance indexer is often a brilliant person who can work through a medical book one week and a legal book the next. No doubt there is index work out there for people who are good with a computer and want to do most indexing by machine, but the best indexers often use the programs sparingly.

      Often companies want the indexer to work under impossible conditions and many do. "Glad to catch you at home, Ms. Indexer, we have this 800 page book on medical malpractice that we need indexed in a week." As with all contractor work, you often get what you pay for -- if you try to impose a cheaper rate on your indexer, you'll likely get a cheaper index. These people are very smart.

      In the publishing profession, indexers often have a reputation of being headstrong and they are often uncompromising. That's OK as long as they produce star quality work. Really good indexers rarely make a mistake--that's right, they rarely make a mistake in an index. They insist on working with the very last version of the work -- and their index is almost a book in itself. If you read a really well done index, you will understand a great deal about the book and how the topics are covered not just what topics are covered.

      Doing an index for the latest trade book on movies, TV, sports, etc. might be fun, but many indexers work on the really ugly stuff where they are most needed -- medical, legal, technical, scientific -- and most human beings do not find that kind of work fun. The easier reading the book, the more likely someone who is not an indexer on staff will do it. The more technical the book, the more important the index. If you are selling $175 medical books, you need to have a good index, you don't short change the effort regardless of how "accounting" wants you to pinch pennies.

      Indexing is often the most difficult role in publishing-- unless of course you rely on indexing software, but then you are not going to be one of the great ones if you do.

      An indexer must know the terms of art for the fields they are indexing in. They have to be naturally inquisitive people who are interested in understanding new things no matter how boring those things may seem to most people. There is so much to this fine art. When I worked in professional publishing I was lucky to find a great one and I stuck with her. She is Lynn Brown of Brown Editorial Services. University of Chicago trained, Mensa, knowledgeable in scientific, medical, and legal--more expensive than most and worth every penny. If you've got a good one, you hold on and the good ones are in demand. If you are thinking about getting into this field, make sure you are willing to work with the more heady topics because that's where the work will be.

      It's a tough, punishing, mentally draining kind of business with lots of pressure and deadlines. It's not a job for the faint of heart who need 8 hours of sleep a night and want their weekends free. Mamas don't let you babies grow up to be indexers.

    • profile image


      10 years ago

      Thanks for the article. I took a USDA course and bought the software, got some letter head and tried to get this business started. I did a few free indexes for samples. It was hard to break into and I eventually dropped it when I found a full-time job. Now that I am among the millions of unemployed perhaps I should dust this skill off. Thanks for the reminder.

    • profile image


      10 years ago

      This is a great hub with some good advices for sure.

    • Rose West profile image

      Rose West 

      10 years ago from Michigan

      Wow, this is so fascinating! I had never thought about how indexes come about. Thanks for such a great hub!

    • Specialk3749 profile image

      Karen Metz 

      10 years ago from Michigan

      This was very interesting! I would love doing this kind of work!

    • MyWebs profile image

      Anthony Goodley 

      10 years ago from Sheridan, WY

      Like others I have never heard of this career field. Sounds like a great work at home job after a bit of training and studying how it all works.

      Great hub that covers all aspects of this field. Bookmarked for sure.

    • Research Analyst profile image

      Research Analyst 

      10 years ago

      This is great information about indexing, thanks for sharing and it is a nice alternative career for those working from home.

    • Rebecca E. profile image

      Rebecca E. 

      10 years ago from Canada

      lvoeit, it is so interesting, and to think it is something one can do with a bit of practice.

    • TimedWrite profile image


      10 years ago

      Thanks so much! What an extensive article...and very well written, too. I had never considered this before.

    • profile image


      10 years ago

      thank you

    • ThoughtfulSpot profile image


      10 years ago from PA

      Thanks WA. I know you had mentioned your career before in the forums, and I had immediately wanted to know more about it. Very thorough hub! Well-written.

    • Hummingbird5356 profile image


      10 years ago

      A very good hub. I have bookmarked it to read later.

    • emievil profile image


      10 years ago from Philippines

      Very interesting. I didn't know that indexing is done by a human being, just took it for granted, that's all. Now, I see it as another work potential for me :D. Thanks for this hub. I'll definitely keep this type of work in mind.

    • Pamela99 profile image

      Pamela Oglesby 

      10 years ago from Sunny Florida

      I never thought about this occupation. Your hub was very thorough and answered all my questions. thanks.

    • suziecat7 profile image


      10 years ago from Asheville, NC

      Thanks for this Hub. I may pursue this.

    • WriteAngled profile imageAUTHOR


      10 years ago from Abertawe, Cymru

      I know what you mean, janiek13. I think those jobs are grabbed by people with inside connections

      Go for it, Tony. There are taster workshops, which take you through some of the indexing process. Their purpose is for people to see whether they might enjoy the work. I did one and then went on to do a course. I was employed at the time, so went really slowly, I think I took about three years to do all five units. However, I got my first book to index while I was still on unit 2. I met someone from a publishing house and happened to mention that I was doing the course. I hadn't deliberately set out to get the work either :)

    • tonymac04 profile image

      Tony McGregor 

      10 years ago from South Africa

      Would love to get into this field. Thanks for the write up.

      Love and peace


    • janiek13 profile image

      Mary Krenz 

      10 years ago from Florida's Space Coast

      Sounds like an interesting field. I have always wanted to pre read books for publishers, not sure what it is called.

    • WriteAngled profile imageAUTHOR


      10 years ago from Abertawe, Cymru

      Gosh! That was quick!!! Thanks for the visit :)

    • hubranger profile image


      10 years ago from Yorkshire, UK

      That was pretty comprehensive about a subject I knew nothing about. Very interesting read, thanks.


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