On this page, you’ll find answers to some frequently asked member questions. If you don’t see your question answered here, please email us at the address listed for your topic below.


How do I know when it’s time to renew my PEN membership?

You will receive a reminder email before your membership expires, but you can find out your renewal date at any time by contacting the PEN member registrar at

How do I renew my membership?

To renew, visit our Renew Your Membership page, fill out the form, and either pay online or send us your payment by check. You can find this page in the Members Only menu at the top of the site, under Renew Your Membership on the member landing page, or under Renewing Members (Current) at the bottom of the Join PEN page.

How do I get the volunteer rate?

If you volunteer with PEN, such as by helping staff our table at an event or by proofreading for our newsletter, you will qualify for the discounted volunteer membership rate at your next renewal. Simply select the volunteer rate from the drop-down menu if you pay online, or make your check out for the volunteer rate if you pay by mail, and our team will verify your eligibility. (Note: Writing an article for the newsletter does not qualify for the volunteer discount.)

For more information, visit the Volunteer with PEN page or contact our volunteer liaison at

Why am I not receiving the member newsletter, PEN announcements, or renewal reminders?

Your contact information may be out of date. Fill out the form on the Update Your Profile page to make sure we have your current email address, or contact to check what address we have on file for you. Also make sure our messages aren’t getting caught in your spam folder.

Can I use the PEN logo on my website?

Yes! Any member in good standing is welcome to display the Professional Editors Network name and logo as evidence of membership. (You may not, however, use them promotionally or to imply endorsement of your work.) Visit the Downloads and Discounts page to download a high-quality file and find other guidelines for logo use.

PEN Directory

How do I create a directory listing?

If you don’t yet have a listing, click here to create one.

How do I edit my directory listing?

Visit your listing, or search for it from the main directory page, and click the red Edit button that appears on the righthand side. On your individual listing page, this appears at the top of your listing. In search results, it is at the bottom of your listing. Any changes you save will show up immediately.

You can also permanently delete your listing using the button that appears on your listing page. You will be asked to confirm deletion before it is made permanent.

Can I create more than one listing?

Each member is limited to one listing. If you attempt to create a new listing when you already have one, it will not be approved; you can edit an existing listing by following the instructions above.

What happens to my listing when my membership expires?

When an individual’s membership lapses, their listing is removed from the PEN website.

My membership expired, but I’ve since renewed it. Can my directory listing be restored?

There is a brief delay between listing removal and permanent deletion. If you accidentally let your membership lapse but rejoined right away, contact to see whether we can restore it for you. If your listing has already been permanently deleted, however, you’ll have to create a new one.


Note: The help center has answers to a lot of technical questions you may have.

What is PENchat?

PENchat is the Professional Editors Network’s members-only discussion group, administered through the platform. It replaced PENlist, our discussion group until 2019, which was administered through Yahoo Groups.

Do I need to create a account to use PENchat?

No. By default, PENchat subscribers are set up to receive all PENchat messages by email, and you can use the group exclusively as an email list. To reply to a post from another user by email, just use the Reply function in your inbox. To post a new message, send a new email to (Be sure to use at least one of the hashtags described below in your subject line.)

However, will automatically create a profile to keep track of your subscription, and you can also view and post messages, change your email preferences, and more through the website. You can either create your own password for this profile or use the option to request an access link whenever you want to change your settings. (Just visit the site’s login page and click the “Email me a link to log in” button.)

The PENchat homepage is

I’m not receiving PENchat messages. What do I do?

If you are subscribed to PENchat but aren’t receiving messages, check your delivery preferences under Subscriptions on

If you are not subscribed and want to be, or if you’re subscribed but couldn’t solve your issue with the information above, contact the group moderator at

Do I need to be subscribed to PENchat to receive the Networking News email newsletter?

No. The newsletter and all event and organization announcements go out directly to PEN members at the email address we have on file for you.

What are hashtags, and how do I use them?

Hashtags are topic markers preceded by the hashtag, or pound, symbol (#). All messages must include at least one of the group’s official hashtags in the subject line:

  • #biz (business topics, including rates, client relations, marketing, finances, business plans, taxes, and more)
  • #chat (general conversation, or anything not covered by another hashtag)
  • #events (events of interest to PEN members)
  • #jobs (share job openings or seek out leads)
  • #scams (warn other members about scams or ask whether an inquiry you’ve received is legitimate)
  • #tech (anything related to hardware, software, websites, online apps, or other technology)
  • #usage (questions and discussion related to style, spelling, grammar, punctuation, and related topics)
Hashtags should be used in addition to whatever subject line you choose for your message, not in place of it. For example, if you had a question about using the Styles feature of Microsoft Word, you might use the subject line “Help with Word Styles #tech.” You may use more than one hashtag if more than one is relevant to your post, but messages without any hashtags will not post to the group; if you try to post by email without a hashtag, you’ll get a mail delivery failure message.
If you’re viewing PENchat posts on the site, you can browse the archive by subject, which makes it easier to find what you might be looking for. You can also click on the Mute link for a hashtag in the footer of any email to stop receiving messages tagged with that hashtag.

Why didn’t my message post to the group?

The most common reasons for a post not going through are not including any hashtags in the subject line, using a hashtag other than those listed above, and attempting to post by email using an address address other than the one through which you’re subscribed to PENchat (which is the email address PEN has on file for you). If none of these reasons apply to your message, you can contact for help.

How do I change my PENchat display name and/or photo?

You can edit your profile by visiting the Identity section under Account on This will change what other members see when you post to the group.

Still have questions? Contact the appropriate email as listed at the top of this page.