Zoe Ross, BA

Location: EDINBURGH

Membership Grade: Advanced Professional Member

Contact Info

Phone: 0131 553 2020
Mobile: 07939 511372
Email: zoe@sargasso.uk.com

General Experience

I have worked as an accredited indexer since 2009 (becoming an Advanced member in 2012). Since then have produced more than 3,000 indexes for a wide variety of publishers, from Islamic history to pop music history.

I have previously worked as a book editor both in house and freelance, since 1991, including editor for writers such as Gore Vidal, Carlos Fuentes and Brian Rix (at André Deutsch)  A graduate in English Literature (BA) (with a specialist subject in Charles Dickens) I have interest and experience in a wide range of subjects, with a particular emphasis on biography, cinema and film (and television), literature, politics, history, food and drink, travel and popular culture. (I spent many years working in travel publishing for both Dorling Kindersley and Insight Guides, including being a front guider/advisor on DK’s Top 10 series, at least 20 of which I produced myself with a dedicated team of five.)

I re-trained as an indexer when much of my editorial work was relocated abroad. I wanted to continue my love, which is creative publishing and being at the forefront of putting books together, rather than the managerial role that I reached but didn’t agree with me. I also continue to work as a copy editor for publishers such as EUP.

I welcome long or short term projects, am available year-round, and am happy to consider projects at short notice.

Subjects

Art and Design

A range of titles for Bloomsbury’s design inprint, such as Pop Art & Design and How to Be an Illustrator. Also worked on books about interior designers and stage designers, such as John Piper, as well as artists as diverse as Thomas Gainsborough, Gilbert & George, the Pre-Raphaelites, to modern visual artists such as Shantell Martin.

Art History

A number of art history and artist profiles for publishers such as Unicorn Press and I. B. Tauris, featuring artists including Eric Ravilious, Whistler, Thomas Gainsborough, John Piper and Gilbert & George.
Have done a number of titles for museums including Burrell Collection (Glasgow) and London’s Lost Jewels (Museum of London).
Modern art titles include Pop Art (Bloomsbury) and Shantell Martin (Heni Publishing)

Cinema and Film

An extensive knowledge of cinema, from mainstream Hollywood (particularly good on 30s–50s Hollywood period, including musicals and film noir) to world cinema, both history & modern (have covered China, Peru, Brazil, France and Israel in past film titles).
Other broad and varied number of titles undertaken include Gilliamesque (Canongate), Claude Chabrol (EUP), New Realism (EUP) and Shoe Reels (EUP).
Also a number of television titles, including Doctor Who and Star Trek, and radio titles (ie. Just a Minute! for Canongate).

Drama/Theatre

Have worked on a range of theatre titles, including Modern British Playwrights (Methuen), Commedia dell’Arte (Ashgate); The Golden Age of Pantomime (I. B. Tauris), Posthuman Becket (EUP),Chinese Theatre (Newgen) and Theatre Through the Camera Eye (EUP). Good knowledge of most theatre subjects: British, Broadway and European, as well as costume and stage design. Particularly strong knowledge of musical theatre.

English Literature

Graduate in English Literature so strong knowledge of literature from 15th to 21st century. Particular interest in 19th-century literature (my specialist degree paper was on Charles Dickens). Fully up to date with contemporary literature too, both professional and personal. Projects include Literary Rivals (Biteback), Bannockburns (EUP) and Jean Rhys: 21st-Century Approaches (EUP).
Past authors’ biographies and/or criticisms include: Elizabeth Bowen; Byron; Rupert Brooke; Laurie Lee; Joyce; Seamus Heaney; Tennyson. Themes include disability; Gothic; comics; fairy tales; children; travel; cinematicity (Joyce) and colonialism.

Fashion/Style

Titles include The Fashion Image (Bloomsbury), Thinking Through Fashion (I.B.Tauris) and Fabric of Scotland (Think). Good knowledge of fashion history, as well as make up (cosmetics and stage) and hair design.

Music

Range of titles from classical to rock and pop, including Sound and Sweet Airs (Oneworld), Beginner’s Guide to Jazz (Oneworld),Like a Bat Out of Hell (Orion) and Too Fast to Live, Too Young to Die (Pavilion). Better knowledge of jazz and popular music than classical. Particularly strong on musicals, particularly Broadway/West End.

Cookery Books

A wide range of cookbook indexes for publishers such as Absolute Press, Penguin, Quadrille, Orion and Canongate. Chef titles include Tom Kerridge, Atul Kocchar, Jason Atherton, Nathan Outlaw and Tom Kitchin, and restaurants including Sketch, Cinnamon Kitchen, Seahorse and Benares. Recently a number of vegetarian/vegan and gluten-free books.
Interest in food history, so also a number of literary titles about food and place, such as Made in London (Absolute Press) and Mamma (Orion).

Food and Drink

A wide range of cookbook indexes for publishers such as Absolute Press, Penguin, Quadrille, Orion and Canongate. Chef titles include Tom Kerridge, Atul Kocchar, Jason Atherton, Nathan Outlaw and Tom Kitchin, and restaurants including Sketch, Cinnamon Kitchen, Seahorse and Benares. Recently a number of vegetarian/vegan and gluten-free books.
Interest in food history, so also a number of literary titles about food and place, such as Made in London (Absolute Press) and Mamma (Orion), as well as specialist titles such as A Long Stride (Canongate), a history of Scotch whisky.

Politics

A vast range of titles covering politics in Britain, USA, Russia (& Soviet Union), the Middle East, Africa and Asia. Select titles include Who Lost Russia? (Oneworld), Call Me Dave (Biteback), Frontline Turkey (I. B. Tauris), Mau Mau Interrogator (Skyscraper) and Jacinda Ardern (Oneworld).

The list is so vast on this topic please contact me for further information.

History (All Areas)

A range of titles covering history from the Middle Ages to the 20th century, with focus on both British and international history. Select titles include 1666 (John Murray), Dynasties of China (Folio Society),
The Great Fire (IBT), Richard III (Bloomsbury), Game of Queens (Oneworld)and Blood and Silk: Power and Conflict in Southeast Asia (Weidenfeld & Nicolson).

Please see also other history entries, such as social history. Also extensive list of World War titles.

The list is vast on this topic please contact me for further information if required.

Religious History

Have worked on so many titles regarding world religions including Islam (and all its branches, from Sunnis, Shias, Sufism to Wahhabism), Judaism, Buddhism and Christianity. Titles include Pilgrimage in Islam (Oneworld), Buddhisms (Oneworld), Emergence of Modern Shi’ism (Oneworld), History of Monasticism (I. B. Tauris) and God is Not a White Man (John Murray/Hodder).
The list is vast on this topic please contact me for further information if required..

-Travel and Specific Countries

Have worked on a wide range of guidebooks for publishers including Dorling Kindersley, Thomas Cook, Insight Guides, AA and Fodors. Extensive (personal) knowledge of various locations worldwide across all five continents, with particular emphasis on London, Scotland, France, Italy and India and Asia in general. Long list of travel guides indexed, from Bali to San Francisco; please contact for more information.
See also specific countries for more historical titles. The list is so vast on this topic please contact me for further information.

Architecture

General titles on Architecture (Amber Books) and Art Deco (Shire) as well as more specialised titles, such as Stanley Picker. Also books on church architecture.

Broadcasting

Innumerable titles on TV series (British and international) such as Dragon’s Den, Doctor Who, Torchwood and Star Trek, as well as radio, such as Just a Minute!.

Also many titles about/on BBC Persia and BBC Pakistan.

Have extensive knowledge of British TV from around 1960s to present day.

Cultural Studies

More titles than it’s possible to list, but as varied as Euphemisms (John Murray), Turkish baths (EUP), Making Evil (Canongate), the history of Yiddish Culture, How to be Animal (Canongate), Dangerous Ideas (history of censorship) (Saqi Books) as well as many of Simon Garfield’s titles.

Islam

Too many titles to fully list, so please contact me for full list if required.

Select examples include History of Islam in 21 Women (Oneworld, 2019), History of Islam in Indonesia (EUP, 2016),
Pilgrimage in Islam (Oneworld, 2017), The Quran (Oneworld, 2017) and Islamic Modernism (EUP 2020).

All angles, from beginners Islam to Sufism, Wahhabism, peace, violence, politics and religious texts.

However, please note that I am not an Arabic speaker and rarely take on projects with a heavy element of Arabic text.

Social History

The history of Liverpool (Hurricane Port – Mainstream); histories of Scotland (Insanitary City [Carnegie]; Edinburgh New Town Builders [Spire]; Scheming [EUP]), and more general titles involving social life, religion, cities etc, such as: Genius and Anxiety (Oneworld, 2019); Health of Nations (Oneworld, 2016); The New Urban Crisis (Oneworld, 2017); Posh Boys (Oneworld, 2018)

Modern History

After the Fall (Wiedenfeld & Nicholson) – history of Spain from Franco to present day, including Podemos and Vox. Wide range of other titles from Middle East politics, to modern electoral systems, to immigration. The list is so vast on this topic please contact me for further information.

American History

Biographies of Jefferson and Lincoln (Folio Society); Reagan: An American Icon (IB Tauris); Gotham Rising (history of NYC) (IB Tauris); as well as various McCarthyism titles, Gold Rush titles, and military campaigns from Civil War to Iraq.
Innumerable titles on Vietnam and Iraq.

Scotland

Bannockburns (EUP) (literary history of Scotland), Insanitary City (history of sanitation) (Carnegie), Edinburgh New Town Builders (Spire); Scheming (EUP); Classical Caledonia (Roman Scotland) (EUP); Scottish Colonial Literature (EUP).

Live and work in Edinburgh and travel round Scotland regularly.

Gender Studies

Deconstruction, Feminism, Film (EUP, 2018); Entanglement (Oneworld, 2016); The Fight for Beauty (Oneworld, 2016); Menopause (Orion, 2017); Women and TV in Pakistan (IB Tauris, 2018); Women in Mongol Iran (EUP, 2016); Women Who Dared (Oneworld, 2018); Women’s Transnational Activism (I.B. Tauris, 2014)

India

Born of Indian stock I am familiar with the historical aspects of India in all terms: history; Partition; architecture; food; modern life etc.

Can supply details or more info on past titles on request.

Handicrafts

Experienced knitter as well as embroiderer, sewer, DIY.

Dance

Have good knowledge of popular dance history: Astaire, Kelly, Bill Bojangles, Nicholas Brothers, Bob Fosse, Martha Graham, Ballet Rambert, up to modern dance etc.

Some knowledge of ballet (and its composers), but not specialist.

Some knowledge of ballroom.

Middle East

More political/social books than travel books (not sure why it is in the travel category). Vast range of titles, from ancient history to modern day. Examples include: Biggest Prison on Earth (Oneworld, 2017); Under the Black Flag (IB Tauris, 2015); Frontline Turkey (IB Tauris, 2017); Iran Turkey Relations (Routeledge, 2011); Language, Politics and Society in the Middle East (EUP, 2017); Islam in Modern Turkey (EUP, 2020).

In terms of travel specifically, have worked on books (and visited) Egypt, Turkey and Israel.

Africa

A range of titles from North Africa (Egyptian politics, media & film, ditto Morocco) to South Africa, Kenya, Sudan and a history of the Nile (twice, different publishers)

Personally familiar with North Africa (various) and South Africa.

China

Wide variety of titles from imperial/dynastic history to modern day and culture. Selected list:
Dynasties of China (Folio Society, 2013)
China’s Wars (Osprey, 2013)
China’s Frontier Regions (IB Tauris, 2015)
China and Chinese in Popular Film (IB Tauris, 2016)
Imperial China (Oneworld, 2020), Sino-Enchantment (EUP, 2021)

Economics

Would not consider myself qualified for heavily academic books on this subject, but have done a number of general readership and/or student titles, such as Bluff Economics (Oneworld), Economics (Hodder Learning) and How Money Got Free (Oneworld). Have done titles on cryptocurrencies, and the effects that AI might have on world economics.

Related qualifications

Copy editing (SfEP) and general copy editing
London School of Publishing: copy editing and proofreading


Other skills

Copy-Editing
More than 20 years experience of copy-editing, clients include EUP; DK; André Deutsch.

Proofreading
More than 20 years experience of proofreading.Clients too varied to mention, but particularly called upon to proofread cookbooks.

Recent indexes include

Eric Berkowitz, Dangerous Ideas: Brief History of Censorship, Westbourne Press/Saqi Books, 2021
Leo Hollis, Inheritance, Oneworld, 2021
Matt Lucas, Little Me, Canongate, July 2017
Various, including Ramsay, Oliver, Wareing, Chefs at Home/em> cookbook, Absolute Press, 2021
Kirsten Sandrock, Scottish Colonial Literature, Edinburgh University Press, 2020
Chine McDonald, God is Not a White Man, Hodder & Stoughton, 2021

Clients Include

Absolute Press; Amber Books; Biteback Publishing; Bloomsbury; British Library; Canongate; Carlton; Casemate; CUP; Dorling Kindersley; Edinburgh University Press; Folio Society; HarperCollins; Heni Publishing; I.B. Tauris; John Blake Publishing; John Murray Publishers; Oneworld Publications; Orion; Osprey Publishing; Palgrave Macmillan; Pavilion; Penguin Books; Phoenix; Quadrille; Reaktion; Redcliffe Press; Saqi Books; Shire Books; Spire Books; UCL; Unicorn Press; Weidenfeld & Nicolson

Special Publication Type

Travel Guides

Have worked on a wide range of guidebooks as both editor, project manager and managing editor for publishers including Dorling Kindersley, Thomas Cook, Insight Guides, AA and Fodors. Extensive (personal) knowledge of various locations worldwide, with particular emphasis on London, Scotland, France, Italy and India.

Tools

Apple Mac
CINDEX
Word, InDesign, Quark