Daniel Heila

is the owner of Best-Ever Edit and Index. He has been editing copy ever since his knack for the skill was leaked to the public by colleagues, friends, and family more than twenty years ago. He hung out a shingle for his freelance editing business after completing the UC Berkeley Extension sequence in professional editing in 2014 and added indexing to his services offered in 2019 after completing the UC Berkeley Extension indexing course. Daniel is also a fiction writer, arts journalist, musician/composer, and avid gardener.

GO TO Résumé


  • Indexing: Theory and Application, UC Berkeley Extension
  • Climbing Camelback: Intermediate and Advanced Topics in Indexing (presented by Fred Leise, winner of the American Society for Indexing 2019 Hines Award.)
  • Sequence in Professional Editing, UC Berkeley Extension
  • Small Business Management Training Course, Lane County Small Business Development Center, Oregon
  • Master Preserver and Food Safety Specialist certification, Lane County Extension Service, Oregon
  • Master of Arts in Music Composition, University of Oregon School of Music and Dance
  • Bachelor of Arts in Music Composition, Hartt School of Music

Background experience:


Daniel Heila received his Master of Music degree in composition from the University of Oregon School of Music and Dance. There he founded the legendary 100th Monkey composer/performer ensemble. After graduation, Heila delved into video art and sound design with shows at Portland Contemporary Art gallery in Portland, Oregon, and DIVA Media Arts Gallery in Eugene, OR.

From 2004-2010 he directed the IMMI Fest, a moving image, improvised music event that paired classic silent films with some of the finest West Coast jazz and avant-garde performers. In that time he performed free improv with the Freedom Fest in Vancouver, BC, the Knotty Ensemble, and the Any Permutation Trio.

From 2010-2014, Heila focused on a folk/Americana project, Daniel Boone’s Fault, writing songs, performing, and recording. This project culminated in the album PODUNK a collection of rural-Gothic story-songs of our time.

Since 2014, Heila has been composing solo piano and string chamber music based on folk melodies of his own and folk songs of the Southern Appalachians. Recently, he co-produced an evening of original solo piano, string quartet, and saxophone quartet music. The concert, Hair Reed Hammer, was a success with over 100 new-music enthusiasts in attendance. In addition, he is a contributing writer for Oregon Artswatch, an online arts and culture journal from Portland, Oregon.


Heila grew up in his parents’ giant vegetable garden planting potatoes, picking peas, and stealing strawberries. He learned to can and preserve at his mother’s and grandmother’s side. His father was an importer/distributor of a Finnish steam juicer and Heila spent many hours learning the ropes of small business under his father’s tutelage at housewares conventions and state, county, and local fairs across the Northeast.

An avid organic gardener for the last 20+ years, Heila is a lay authority on soil fertility, composting, and vegetable and fruit growing. To bring his canning and food preservation skills up to date, he achieved the Master Food Preserver and Food Safety Specialist status with the Oregon Extension Service, Lane County, Oregon.

He took over his father’s business in 2004 and imported and distributed the Mehu-Liisa steam juicer until 2018. In that time he wrote all marketing and promotional materials and copy, managed an e-commerce site, and authored a blog for users of the juicer. In addition, he completed a three-year business management course at the Lane County Small Business Center in Eugene, Oregon.

Heila has been the chief cook and bottle washer for his family of four for the last 20+ years, cooking three meals a day from scratch. He is also a skilled hard cider brewer, often pressing and fermenting apples from his own trees. His specialty is apple/fruit combinations using Trappist yeast to bring out the fruit esters while sitting on the lees for up to 6 months. In his process, no cider is bottled before it is aged a full year.

What People Say

Thank you so much! This is golden! And every cell in my body that was ever a researcher thrills to your index!

Marta S. Rivera Monclova, Ph.D.

I wouldn’t hesitate to recommend Daniel Heila as an indexer. His innate indexing abilities are obvious from the first glance at his indexes.

Kari Kells, Index West

I recently engaged Daniel to copyedit my manuscript, The Whiteaker Bounce…I found Daniel to be thorough and professional throughout all stages of the project from complete copyediting of the manuscript to assistance with conversion of the document to the final successful upload for both e-book and print versions…As we worked together, he made himself freely available to me for question and answer sessions.

Bernard Yandel

Let’s capture your best writing and reveal the web of meaning in your work.