The Process – Month 1

It’s been approximately three months since my wife and I made a toast to my first (hopefully not last) book accepted by a major publisher. Since then I’ve had plenty of people ask me, “So, what’s going on with your book?” The answer, unfortunately, has been either “Not much,” or “I don’t know.”

The book business is not known for being fast paced.

Things finally started moving this month, and each month going forward I will receive notification of exactly what those goings-on are, and I have decided to keep everyone updated on the process as we go along. If you care, great, and if not, hey, there’s always Farmville.

Here’s what’s happening in June:

“Production of your book has officially begun, and we want to let you know what’s happening with your project. This month, our copyediting staff is reviewing your manuscript and adjusting any technical issues that it may present. It is important that your manuscript be in the best shape grammatically before it is handed over to a conceptual editor.
So, what’s the difference between a copy editor and a conceptual editor?
A copy editor reviews your manuscript technically, double-checking correct punctuation, misspellings, and formatting (such as Scripture and dialogue).
A conceptual editor works more in-depth with your manuscript and you, the author, giving special attention to plot formation, character development, dialogue, supported arguments, etc., as well as double-checking punctuation, misspellings, and formatting.
Wondering what your copy editor is looking for? Attached, you’ll find a list of the top ten most frequent mistakes found in manuscripts. This document is simply for your reference to know what is happening during this month of copyediting. You do not need to make any adjustments to your manuscript; we will make these corrections for you and send your manuscript directly to conceptual editing at the end of the month.
* Please note that regional dialect (“Howdy, y’all! Wha’s goin’ on?”) will not be revised, nor will writing that adheres to British technical styling (The colour of his shirt was chartreuse.). Secondary sources, such as quoted material, transcripts, e-mail messages, etc., will not be altered.

The production process works on a monthly schedule of which copyediting is the first step. Copyediting is a one-month process. You will not be contacted by anyone during this quiet month of June during copyediting but rest assured that we’re working hard to ensure that you have the most polished manuscript possible. Once your manuscript has completed copyediting, you will be contacted by a conceptual editor the first week of July.”

If you got bored reading that, let me translate: It takes forever. Kind of like having a baby. Let’s hope the end result is almost as good.

See you in July, if not before.

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