Chelle Parker

Contributor profile

Chelle Parker

Copyeditor, 2018–Current; Managing Editor, 2020–2022

Chelle Parker is a nerdy, queer, nonbinary, neuroatypical, disabled thirtysomething and has enjoyed an unusually colourful life, having lived in or visited fourteen countries on four continents and learned seven languages along the way. Chelle’s background is primarily in education, where they spent eight years teaching English, French, math, science, and life skills to at-risk junior-high students, but they’ve also worked in a peculiar array of other environments. These range from daycares to sexual health clinics, doing jobs as diverse as librarian, baker, radio DJ, and Braille transcriptionist—all while editing on the side.

Chelle’s staying put for the moment (more or less) in their hometown of Ottawa, Canada—on unceded Algonquin Anishnaabeg territory—where they wield their trusty red pen as a full-time freelance editor, act as the managing editor (and copyeditor and proofreader) of Fireside Fiction Company’s Fireside Magazine, and serve as a human shield for their chronically anxious rescue dog.

Some of their more notable editing clients include animation giant Mediatoon’s Europe Comics imprint (for whom they edit graphic novels translated from French into English) and BookLife Reviews (for whom they have fact-checked and edited reviews). Chelle has also reviewed speculative fiction and erotica themself (including novels, single-author collections, and short fiction anthologies) professionally for Publishers Weekly, though currently is on hiatus to focus on other projects.

When off the clock, Chelle is a passionate mentor and volunteer. In particular, they have devoted countless hours to Readercon, a world-renowned conference on imaginative literature. (From 2018–2022, they co-developed the convention’s annual program and selected panelists; edited panelist bio-bibliographies, the annual Program Guide, and the annual Souvenir Book; co-managed teams of volunteers assisting with the Program and Publication departments; created and oversaw the conference’s plan to pivot to virtual in 2021 in response to the COVID-19 pandemic; and served as the de-facto Head of Accessibility.) Chelle has also volunteered as a grants juror for the Speculative Literature Foundation, proctored certification exams for Editors Canada, and helped new editors launch their own freelance businesses.

If you’re ever in Ottawa and notice someone’s taken a handful of colourful Sharpies to ugly comments on the inside of all the public bathroom stalls, there’s a good chance that someone was them.

Website: on Twitter