To edit or not to edit……That is the question….

Published April 19, 2013 by G.L.

I thought I might want to share a bit of details about our first book in our Sterling Wayfairer series titled, “The Mark of Noba”. The story centers around a 17 year old teenager, Sterling Wayfairer and his struggle to make his mark in life. Through a mysterious classmate,Tetra, he finds out that he was born in a world different from his own and learns that he comes from a race of world and time travelers.It is later learned that he and Tetra share a relationship where the two are spiritually bonded, and through this bond they are able to perform extraordinary things.

Maybe this fact should excite him. After all in a few short days he goes to being average to being average with an interesting background. However  learning this isn’t exactly the best news for him as he’s so desperate to keep his crappy yet promising life in his current world. When students from his high school begin to go missing, Tetra seems to be the only one that has any clues on what could be happening to them, but she needs his help to grow strong enough to be able to defeat the evil that lies ahead.

Since my sister Guinevere and I are in the initial stages on completing our second draft for our first YA/Fantasy novel, “The Mark of Noba”, there are many things to consider at this point and fortunately for you you’re able to walk down this path with us in our early stages 🙂

If like us, you’re going the independent route, you’ll begin to realize that publishing independently can give you the freedom to make most if not all the decisions that go into the production of your book.

Because you don’t have the luxury of a traditional publishing house breathing down your back, you have the freedom to write the story that YOU want to write without worrying if it fits the particular criteria of what a traditional publishing house will accept. But it also means that you won’t have the honor of having hard decisions made for you, which include but are not limited to hiring an editor.

Now hiring an editor may not seem like a big deal but I want to stress how important hiring an editor is. I’ve put down indie books that had the potential to live up to traditionally published books a handful of times.The reason? Because the books had waaaaay too many grammatical errors, misspelled words and improper use of point of view. I know we as writers tend to write from the heart so quite often we don’t catch mistakes that we make in the writing process. What we think will be the next indie masterpiece will never be that if it doesn’t read like a professionally edited novel. Maybe you think readers won’t notice, but don’t insult your future readers intelligence by ASSUMING they won’t notice things wrong. They will and they do! Just look at goodreads reviews on your favorite indie books.

owl-reading

Our future readers want to read a beautifully crafted story without worrying if you’re fully qualified to even write the perfect story.Why give them a reason not to continue to read your books? After all, there was a reason they picked your book up in the first place. Editing may seem like a very costly prerequisite but allow me to convince you why editing is soooo important.

african_american_girl_reading_a_book_0515-1002-0104-1043_SMU

The fact of the matter is, by going the independent route you’ll slowly learn that everything about your books production will be covered by your own costs. So unless you have some rich aunt(I wish I would have) who’s going to invest into making your book what it needs to be without coming out of your own pocket, I advise you come up with some sort of plan.

It’s easy to look at your “plan”(Please tell me you have a plan, a schedule and a budget.If not you need to make one. You will need to figure out how much time and money you have to put into this project, because once the manuscript is done, doesn’t mean that the work is)and go “Hmm…where can I reduce spending and cut costs. Oh I know, the editing is going to cost me, so why not cut that out all together? After all, I’m a writer. I know where to place my commas, structure my sentences and how to “show and not tell. Do I really need to hire an editor”?

Hate to break it to you but chances are, you probably will need to. To put it in simple terms, us writers just don’t have the eye to critically judge our work as we write it. Even an author as famous as Cassandra Clare, who’s published publication upon publication still needs an editor. So why should we be any different?

Just like you feel as though it’s your calling to write the best story of your life, it’s an editor’s calling to proofread and pick up on the many mistakes you most likely made while writing your novel. And trust me we make MANY mistakes!

proofreading

I know it’s important to have an eye catching book cover and an amazing idea but if your book doesn’t read like a book you can pick up at Barnes & Noble, It can really affect how readers view you as a writer. Editing may seem like an expensive expense but trust me it will be worth it. And there are some reputable editors online who will edit your work at a fraction of the cost.

My next post will feature what to look for in an editor and what to steer clear from.

Thanks for reading!!!

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