It really is amazing when I think about how much goes into the process of taking a book from original manuscript draft to book form. When I submitted my manuscript I really had no idea what it would take. My main source of information were old episodes of Murder She Wrote where Jessica Fletcher would often complain about deadlines and proof reading. :)
But the real process was much more interesting.
-It started with a basic cleaning up of the accepted manuscript based on a set of guidelines my publisher sent me.
-Then I was put on an editing schedule.
-Next I was contacted by editor who gave me a list of deadlines for the editing phase.
-Then over the next three months my editor and I traded the manuscript back and forth. She’d send me a copy with color coded suggestions and changes and I’d send her back a color coded edition with changes and questions. Some of her comments were actually quite amusing. There were a few that suggested I was not romantic enough. Happily by the end of the editing she was pleased with that particular subplot.
-I had to read the story out loud to check for more mistakes. Word to the wise: Don’t attempt this in one day. By 4:00 I had lost my voice.
-Next was the cover design phase. After a phone call with me, my graphic designer presented me with three different ideas for the cover. Feeling rather guilty about it, I rejected all three. They were very good, but they didn’t represent the story well enough. Thankfully my mom actually found two great images on the photo site my company uses and my Graphic Designer did a great job with them.
-Then came layout, where what the inside of the book would look like was designed.
-A complete copy was then sent to me to look at one last time. It was horrific to realize how many red marks actually needed to be added.
-Choosing an audio book reader came next. The editing phase of this project is still in progress.
-And now marketing…
In total, I read my book ten times this year.
All and all, I’d have to say I had a blast. I don’t care what J.B. Fletcher thinks, this was fun.