Tag Archives: Copy Editing

FREE Books – Hell No

Seriously would you ask a plumber to do some work in your house and not pay them, would you tell a cashier their goods aren’t worth paying for. Then don’t ask an author for a FREE Book.  Seriously, that is just lame.

Do you know how much time and money goes into producing a book for you to read?  I doubt it somehow.

The first part is of course is finding your muse and writing your first draft. A draft can be anything from 500 words to 200,000 plus, after all it is their story to tell.  So think about the hours it take to write that many words.  Then you have the re-drafting x about 20 or more RE-WRITES until their story makes sense, flows well etc.  this could take 6 month or a year, if not longer. It depends on the genre, and research done.  

I recently spent 18 months with a client assisting her with writing and producing her book. Time is of course money.

Next is the EDITING PROCESS.  An author will work with one or more Editors for months to get their manuscript perfected.  Copy Editing, Line Editing, Grammar – It all costs money. 

BOOK COVERS are the next thing, and certainly not the last.  Once again you consult with a Graphic Designer or Book Cover Artist.  You may need changes or adjustments.  Once again this take time and MORE MONEY.

FORMATTING. This is when the manuscript is turned into ebooks and PRINT Books.  Another thing authors have to pay for unless they know how to do this themselves.  You book needs to look like any a reader buys from a shop or picks up at a library.  Professional. 

MARKETING.  This is an ongoing event.  Yes some marketing is free, though it doesn’t mean it works. An Author has to market continuously to get their work out there, make connections and a name for themselves.  They will need to do Interviews, Blog Tours, Events, Book Signing, Giveaways, Sales….

So perhaps you’d now like to add up all this time and money spent.  It is in the thousands. So the one thing an Author needs is YOUR SUPPORT!! So the small amount of royalties they earn can cover the costs of Editing, Book Covers and Marketing.

Oh don’t forget these Authors also have families, and daily job so they can actually live and feed themselves.  Unless you make the big time as an Author, it isn’t going to be your daily income.

The only free books we do are those to assist Authors get their name out there with Anthologies of short stories…We all absorb the costs and assist each other. Even then the FREE Version is an eBook not a PRINT.

DON’T ASK FOR A FREE BOOK.  

ASKING FOR FREE BOOKS IS JUST BLOODY RUDE.

 

PS Some Vanity Press can charge up to $20,000 for all of the above.

 

Indie Editing & Local Book Stores

Bashed after professional editing and no it wasn’t by my excellant Editor.  It seems to get a book into a bookstore your book has to be perfect if you are an Indie Author – never mind the bloody Traditional Published books which nearly always have one or two errors in them. The Bookstore owners sure as hell aren’t going to read them just to point out errors otherwise they’d not have a business.

I am sick of it.  No only is spelling and grammar different in each English speaking country, you then have to fight for the right to sell them locally.  Online it is fine, if someone points out an error you fix it and re-publish, be it print or eBook.  

I do wish New Zealand would catch up with the rest of the world with Independently Published books and give them a chance.  Personally if I ever won lotto or inherited a fortune I would open an Indie Book Store with a Coffee Shop.  If only…

It isn’t that I think we should be lazy with our editing at all.  It should be top rate, as good as you can afford.  It also needs Beta Readers, Proof Readers, Line Editor and so on.  If you know someone you can exchange services with etc then go for it.  Writing sure as hell isn’t a cheap business.  Even with all the above errors will still find a way in…You could edit for years and never publish at all I suppose.  

Anyway I was given a helping hand and a possible solution to help tighten up my books with editing which includes my lovely editors.  It was Thanks to A L Mengel who I chatted to earlier this evening for ideas and ways to improve my own books.  Here is what he told me.

I practice several rounds of edits. The first round,is the story structure, I do myself. Someone has to turn the draft into a flowing story, and the author really needs to do that.
 
After that, I send it out for a read through for flow and consistency
 
Then more edits are made.
 
Next is another set of eyes for line edits – Remember the first editor is already too familiar with the story. They may read over errors.
 
Then more edits are made again before it goes to the proofreader. Another set of eyes
 
The last step is the beta readers.  They receive special copies which they read (usually 1-5 people) and if they see an error, they’re asked to record it.
That is where my conversation ended with Mr Mengel.  There is one main thing I noted.  He had different people doing different parts, making sure new eyes were looking over the book.  It is this sort of journey which will give you and exceptional book in the end.