By Award Winning Author Elisabeth Marrion-B.R.A.G. Medallion Honoree
You finished your latest masterpiece. Ready to press the publish button? No, wait, hold it there, just for a minute. Have you read and re-read? Did you do so on your computer, or did you print a copy? Printing out a copy is always a good idea, if you can do that. It really is easier to spot mistakes on a printed sheet.
Have you been lucky, or brave enough, to have it beta read?
Most of us have written more than one book. Do we, by now, have an inkling as to what will be best for our work to shine above the rest?
Cost, as always, will be a factor. Proofreading is a must and can be costly. I, at one time, received some really bad advice on how to save on proofreading costs. A mistake I will not repeat.
But do we need the extra expense of having the manuscript copy-edited? And bear in mind, that your copy-editor might suggest some changes. Or, worse still, suggest to delete certain sections altogether. This is your work, every word thought about, and the story carefully crafted. And now? A total stranger might be crossing out, changing and making suggestions on your creation.
No need to panic yet. We do not have to follow everything recommended. In one of my books, it was suggested one of the chapters was not needed at all. No relevance to the story, I was told. Well, it was relevant to me. I left it in. The book did get shortlisted that year in the Historical Novel Indie Award and received the B.R.A.G. Medallion, I am proud to say.
However, many suggestions I followed gladly, and am pleased I did. It was good to have a fresh view on what I thought was already ‘perfect’. It was far from perfect, of course. Perfection is what we strive for with every sentence we write. And the more books we write, the better we get, I am quite sure.
Yes, if you can, have your manuscript copy-edited. I certainly will. Mind you, I have to finish the next book first.
Do you have a story to add about copy-editing? Maybe you could share it here.
Be sure to read Elisabeth’s post on Advertising Budget
Elisabeth was born in 1948 in Hildesheim, Germany. Her father was a Corporal in the RAF stationed after WWII in the British occupied zone in Germany, where she met her mother, Hilde.
Elisabeth and her mother shared their love for Art, both were performing at their local theater from a young age.
As a teenager she enjoyed reading novels and plays by Oscar Wilde, Thornton Wilder, Ernest Hemingway and short stories by Guy de Maupassant. More recently she felt inspired by ‘Rabbit-proof fence’, a true story written by Doris Pilkington.
In 1969 she moved to England and married David. Together they worked throughout the Far East and Sub Continent, spending a large amount of their time in Bangladesh. There they helped their manufacturer to build a school in the rural part of the Country.
For inspiration Elisabeth puts on her running shoes for a run through the New Forest.