Sunday, September 22, 2013

Editing Your Book

Right now I am going through my second-to-last read-through of my book to find typos and misused words before getting feedback from my beta readers. I've received a small chunk of feedback so far, but I'm holding out for the final wave the weekend before I publish. It's going to be a busy time. I'm a perfectionist, and while that hasn't served me well in the drafting stage, it has served me well in this final stage. I feel more confident that the book is stronger because of this attention to detail, and I will explain my process below.

If you own a Kindle (and if you don't, I highly recommend one. If you don't want to get one, you can still use an app on your phone or computer!) I suggest loading your test .mobi file, which is the book file that you will upload to Amazon, and test it out on your reader. I've done this for my current draft to spot typos and formatting errors, and it's helped immensely.

To save on time, keep a document, typed or handwritten - it doesn't really matter which, and have a section for each chapter of your book. As you read each chapter, type out the revisions that need to be done. I do a misspelled word in all caps so that it's easy to go back and see what needs to be done. My eyes play tricks on me sometimes, and I've read my own material so many times that it's almost boring to do so. I know the story like the back of my hand, and spotting a missing letter is hard work. Really take your time with this stage and read the sentence as if you haven't seen it before. You're more likely to find those errors on your tablet than you are in a PDF. It's also good to see the product the way a reader will see it so that you don't get any surprises when you upload. (I'm sure there will be a few of those even with my process!)

There you have it. That's my process for doing a "final" sweep for little crumbs and dust on my manuscript.

If you're interested in seeing what my book cover looks like, check my blog tomorrow at noon to see a peek at my cover! I'm pleased with how it turned out, and would love any thoughts that people have.