Belletra’s Managing Editor, Casey Butterfield, has ten years of experience working in the academic, corporate and non-profit worlds as a writer, editor and translator. Casey holds a Master’s degree in International Relations from the University of Cambridge and a Bachelor’s degree in Comparative Literature from Berkeley. She completed a Fulbright grant in literary translation in Barcelona, Spain, and was a founding editor of the Atlantic Community, an online magazine for foreign affairs based in Berlin, Germany.
In addition to general developmental editing, Casey also works in the specialized areas of public policy, grantwriting and non-native English correction. She is a scrupulous researcher, familiar with the language and style issues unique to the IR field, and has edited papers from the Royal United Services Institute (RUSI) in Great Britain, the Center for European Policy Analysis in Washington, DC, and the offices of members of the German Bundestag, among others. Her grantwriting skills have won her a US Fulbright grant, a Haas Research Scholarship, an Anglo-Catalan Society Young Researchers’ Fellowship and a Cambridge Trusts Award. She advises new Haas and Fulbright applicants and edits research proposals for these awards.
Having lived and worked in Spain and Germany, Casey knows firsthand how difficult it can be to write in a foreign language. Her fluency in Spanish and Catalan and facility in German give her a language-learner’s mindset, and she can often explain idiomatic English concepts more comprehensively than a monolingual editor could. Casey edited English submissions from all over the world as Editor-in-Chief of the Atlantic Community, and made linguistic and structural suggestions on the English book manuscript of a non-native professor from the UC Berkeley German department.
Casey has translation experience in a myriad of subjects, but she particularly enjoys those assignments which require her creativity. She delights in creating culturally appropriate materials that will penetrate the English-speaking market and grab the reader’s attention. Such work includes promotional materials for an extreme ski resort, the seasonal collections of a Barcelona fashion label, and an art exhibition on the Spanish artist Rafael Barradas. She is equally comfortable in American English and British English, having been born in California and educated at both UC Berkeley in the United States and the University of Cambridge in England.
Casey’s competence in business translation stems from her experience as a manager in offices in the United States, Spain and Germany. She is familiar with many different corporate cultures and understands that what is standard operating procedure in one country may be anathema in another. Past Spanish-English projects include the annual report of a multinational firm, the correspondence between a Spanish bank and its English-speaking customer, and a 33,000 word municipal action plan for a Spanish town to present to a European Union committee.
Casey’s love affair with language began at age ten, when she entered the sixth-grade spelling bee at the Los Angeles County Fair and won first prize: a three-volume set of dictionaries and a very tall trophy.
Since that first forbidden glimpse of lexicography, Casey has picked up three languages, a Fulbright grant and a Cambridge graduate degree. But she is still the same word nerd she was at twelve, when she took her first college composition course through Johns Hopkins University and developed a passion for the persuasive essay.
Words put Casey through graduate school: in February of 2005, she went to her local mall on a mission to win $10,000 on the new game show Word Slam! and secure a spot in the May championship. Not only did Casey win a spot on Word Slam!, she beat out 11 other word lovers nationwide for the title of National Vocabulary Champion and won a grand total of $35,000.
Casey translates for the joy that comes from finding the right word. She edits because she loves to read good writing, no matter how many drafts it takes. Words still fail her in the presence of a well-turned phrase.