Question of the Month

Brandie RandolphQuestion: When I view a book with bad editing, is it the editor’s fault or the author’s? Hasn’t the author been taken advantage of by being given poorly edited work?

Answer: I have dealt with this issue with many times. Book clubs, Facebook and social media have made it very easy to call someone’s manuscript poorly edited because, suddenly, everyone is an expert on the subject. In last month’s article, I discussed the different types of editing. Those different types entail a different product that the author is paying for. Obviously, as you get into more detailed types of editing, prices increase. There are manuscripts that desperately need developmental editing, but the author does not wish to shell out the money to acquire said editing. They opt to go for the cheaper copyediting and are hurt in the end. All too often, the blame is placed on the editor from the client and readers when, in fact, the author just didn’t care enough to pay for what they really needed. I always say that authors need to invest in their work fully if they expect readers to pay for it. Don’t go the cheap route and have your readers paying for a sub-par product. If you can’t afford the needed editing, you aren’t ready to publish. Period. That being said, there ARE true cases where the editing was done poorly, needs to be redone, or one or both parties’ expectations were not cohesive. Give the editor and the author a chance to correct the problem and offer you their best product in the end. We are in this together and most are self-published authors. Offer constructive criticism that can be beneficial versus malicious judgment that helps no one, including the industry as whole, in the end.

Ask the editor today! 

Question of the Month

Brandie RandolphQuestion: When I view a book with bad editing, is it the editor’s fault or the author’s? Hasn’t the author been taken advantage of by being given poorly edited work?

Answer: I have dealt with this issue with many times. Book clubs, Facebook and social media have made it very easy to call someone’s manuscript poorly edited because, suddenly, everyone is an expert on the subject. In last month’s article, I discussed the different types of editing. Those different types entail a different product that the author is paying for. Obviously, as you get into more detailed types of editing, prices increase. There are manuscripts that desperately need developmental editing, but the author does not wish to shell out the money to acquire said editing. They opt to go for the cheaper copyediting and are hurt in the end. All too often, the blame is placed on the editor from the client and readers when, in fact, the author just didn’t care enough to pay for what they really needed. I always say that authors need to invest in their work fully if they expect readers to pay for it. Don’t go the cheap route and have your readers paying for a sub-par product. If you can’t afford the needed editing, you aren’t ready to publish. Period. That being said, there ARE true cases where the editing was done poorly, needs to be redone, or one or both parties’ expectations were not cohesive. Give the editor and the author a chance to correct the problem and offer you their best product in the end. We are in this together and most are self-published authors. Offer constructive criticism that can be beneficial versus malicious judgment that helps no one, including the industry as whole, in the end.

Ask the editor today! 

Ask the Editor: Different Types of Editing

Brandie RandolphCopy Editing:

Ensure consistency in all mechanical matters- spelling, capitalization, punctuation, hyphenation, abbreviations, format of lists, etc. Optional Guideline: Allow deviation from house style if the author consistently uses acceptable variants. Check contents page against chapters; check numbering of footnotes or end notes, tables or figures. Correct all indisputable errors in grammar, syntax and usage, but ignore any locution that is not an outright error. Point out paragraphs that seem egregiously wordy or convoluted, but do not revise.  Ignore minor patches of wordiness, imprecise wording or jargon. Ask for clarification on terms likely to be new to readers. Query factual inconsistencies and any statements that seem incorrect.  Note any text, tables or illustrations that may require permission to reprint.

Heavy Editing:

Ensure consistency in all mechanical matters- spelling, capitalization, punctuation, hyphenation, abbreviations, format of lists, etc. Optional Guideline: Allow deviation from house style if the author consistently uses acceptable variants. Check contents page against chapters; check numbering of footnotes or endnotes, tables or figures. Correct all errors in grammar, syntax and usage.  Rewrite any patches wordy or convoluted patches. Ask for or supply terms likely to be new to readers.  Verify and revise any facts that are incorrect.  Query or fix any facts that are faulty in logic. Note any text, tables or illustrations that may require permission to reprint.

 

Developmental Editing:

This editing evaluates the big picture and assist the author as a writing coach. In this editing, character and plot are the main focus to be sure the story is building up to its rightful place. After analysis of your manuscript, the editor makes suggestions on content, organization to include possibly arranging or rearranging sentences, paragraphs or chapters; the editor may also help develop manuscripts presentation; and, clients MUST understand that in this editing the editor may feel a need to write and rewrite; editor may research as needed, and sometimes suggest topics or provide information about topics for consideration by authors or clients. This editor always keeps the readers in mind while editing. It also tries to help the editor achieve credibility and makes sure the book gives factual content.

Send all Ask the Editor questions to: asktheeditor@penashemagazine.com

Featured Article of the Month by: Marcia Mcnair

This month’s Featured Article is by Marcia Mcnair. “You can get your book published just do it yourself” Read what Marcia has to say about getting your book published. This is a Two Part Article! The continuation will be displayed in January. Read this month’s Article: www.fromawriterspovmagazine.com

Before we end today’s blog…

Get your article featured here: http://fromawriterspovmagazine.com/issue/november-2009/article/guest-article-submission

Signing Off,

Dominique Watson

The Publishing Season Part Four: P.O.D Publishing

P.O.D means print on demand if you didn’t already know. P.O.D has become so popular in the publishing business. Many publishing companies are offering this service. Your book is published faster. You’re able to put out more books. On the flip side of P.O.D you’re paying a lot of money to have your book published. (Depending on the route you take)

If this is the route you’ve decided to go with publishing, you’re first step is to narrow it down to the companies that interest you. You need to decide, as with any publishing company, what your company needs to provide for you. Do you need your publishing company to offer editing? Graphic Design? You need to have already answered these questions BEFORE you go publishing company shopping.

Once you have decided what you need and narrowed your choices down, you need to research the company and find out what they ask for in submissions. The good thing about P.O.D is that their requirements are, most of the time, small. You may fill out a form. They will ask some questions about your book and then give you a set time of when they will contact you back for acceptance. There are some companies that you do not have to submit any form. You find the package that you want (Remember add-ons. We spoke about this in the earlier articles.) and then you go through the process of creating your book. CreateSpace is just like this. You create the book how you see fit for not extra cost. You must have computer experience for this. www.createspace.com

It should take about a week maybe two for the company to contact you. Most of the time, they do not turn down a manuscript. That’s money they will lose. If they do turn down your book then that means they have a specific list of books that they will only publish. That’s a good thing and a bad thing. Some companies only want mystery suspense, others are for romance only. So that’s why you must shop around before you decide on a company so you don’t waste any of your time.  After the company has contacted you then they take you through the steps to create your book. You should not lose any control with you book. You should have a say about everything all the way down to the graphic design.

It should take about 3-6 months to have your book in stores. It may take a year depending on the company.

Stay Tuned for Step Five: Check list: (Website, P.R, Marketing)

*Ask yourself what does your publishing company need to offer

*View the top publishing companies of the year: http://online-book-publishing-review.toptenreviews.com/