Cellwair.com is the homepage of Christchurch-based Charles Hendtlass, copy editor, technical writer and desktop publisher.

Word Cloud

First the business...

The written word has been an important part of my life since childhood, and I have been fortunate to spend most of my career working – in one way or another – with words (with a couple of brief excursions into teaching and the world of business). In 2009 I set up my own business and currently offer the following services:

  • Copy editing, technical editing and technical writing
  • Desktop publishing of newsletters, reports and books
  • Graphics and web management.

With degrees in Physics (BSc), English (BA), Resource Management (MSc) and a Secondary Teaching Diploma, I cover a wide field of disciplines in the sciences, the arts and engineering.

Previous editing and writing experience has covered: academic journal articles, project reports, teaching material (secondary and tertiary), and academic and general books (including family histories). The subjects covered include: science, engineering, law, medicine, accountancy, psychology, sociology, history, tourism, automotive trades, genealogy and literary fiction.

As well as working with words, I also have an extensive background in graphic design and desktop publishing, the latter from concept through design and layout to pre-press preparation and final production (samples can be found in the links on the Publications page).

Over the years I have worked for a range of organisations and clients, including:

  • Elsevier Sequoia (UK);
  • University of Canterbury;
  • Lincoln University;
  • the New Zealand Centre for Advanced Engineering;
  • the New Zealand Coastal Society;
  • the Open Polytechnic;
  • the Southern Institute of Technology;
  • Synapsys NZ Ltd.;
  • several New Zealand government organisations;
  • a range of industry training organisations; and
  • a diverse range of individuals.
For more information or to discuss a project, please contact me.


...but wait, there's more...

Some editing FAQs, the origin of the name 'Cellwair', how medieval monks fit into the story, and a bonus site about the artworks of a distant relative...

Why do I need an editor?
A handy checklist for all those questions you never knew to ask – what does an editor actually do? Do you need one and, if so, what kind? Surely it's something you can do yourself, right? Or maybe your partner/friend/mother? There's more to editing than just finding typos, and some good reasons why you should consider using a professional – check this page to find out more.
Why Cellwair?
While living in Wales in the early 1980s, I attempted to learn Welsh. While a beautiful and melodic language, it is also difficult to learn and I failed miserably. However, for some reason, one word – 'cellwair' – stuck with me, this being one of the Welsh words for 'fun'. So, when I registered my first domain name, cellwair was an obvious choice for what was then something of a hobby. This also might help to explain my Gmail account name – once started, it became difficult to change, but at least it stands out!
Why Monks?
Obsession? What obsession? Well, perhaps there is a mild fascination. Again, it stems from my time living in Wales, a countryside littered with medieval ruins. My first 'ruin' was that of Valle Crucis Abbey and it began what has turned into a major hobby. Ruined abbeys have a particular appeal (for their architecture, function and sudden decline) and I am equally fascinated by the inhabitants of these long-gone institutions (what they did and why, and what, if anything, they achieved).
von Axster-Heudtlass Art Site
Also hosted on this site, these pages are devoted to the work of a little-known artist by the name of Werner von Axster-Heudtlass. You might guess from the similar surname that he is (was) a distant relative of mine. He began as a commercial advertising artist and – unfortunately – ended producing posters and stamps for the Nazis during World War II. However, some of his work (particularly that done for the Steinway company) is quite charming and after collecting dozens of samples I decided to build a website around them, which can be seen here.