Is it Soup yet? How to know when your manuscript is ready to print?

Intentionally blank pages at the end of a book.

Intentionally blank pages at the end of a book. (Photo credit: Wikipedia)

When you self-publish it makes you the final decision maker. It also makes you the marketing person, sales force, CFO, and janitor.

That means you decide when your work is ready to go to print. So how do you get to that decision? When do you know your words are the best they are going to be?

We already spoke about using beta readers and professional editors. But you are the final say in your books debut, so here’s some tips on when to know it’s right:

1. You’ve incorporated the feedback into the work that your beta readers gave you. There were some tear-stained pages, but now you’ve got the kinks worked out.

2. You cleaned up the punctuation, commas, and general grammar of the work until it is easy to read, flows, and doesn’t have blinding errors by using a professional proofreader.

3. You let someone else you trust read it one last time and use a red pen generously. Ask them to make sure there is continuity with characters and plot lines.

4. You read the entire manuscript aloud. This is a very important step because reading the book aloud gives you perspective not only on grammatical errors, but on sentences that don’t work or characters that aren’t pulling their weight.

5. You know in your gut, it’s ready.

After following these five steps you should have a manuscript that is ready to print. But you’re not done yet. You have some other issues to pull together that are necessary for your book’s success.

The next step is cover design. Yes, even if you do only eBooks you must have a cover.

Next installment we’ll talk about, How People DO Judge a Book by its Cover.

Lorena

Right now on Goodreads you can enter to win one of five copies on their Giveaway program. Here’s the link to win your copy too. And please add me as a friend.  http://www.goodreads.com/giveaway/show/59409-coaster

 

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