One of the most difficult steps for me as an author is the final review of my manuscript once it has been through the copy edit and design stages. Receiving the galley proof tells me that my book is “almost there” and I have this one last chance to make any corrections. I faced a tight turn-around with Beautiful Snare so I asked my husband, author W.C. Jameson, to read the pages after I did to catch any mistakes that the copy editor or I had missed. One thing I tried not to do was rewrite passages that I felt were a bit weak or a tad unclear. At this stage of the publishing process an author defeats his or her own purpose by delaying the book because it isn’t perfect. I found approximately forty errors and my husband identified about ten more. Most of them were tiny typos that slipped by spell check and eight pairs of careful eyes. A few were formatting glitches. A couple were things that I had never noticed during all my read-throughs, but that I now felt needed to be changed. All minor things, but enough that I wanted the copy editor to fix before the book went to print. In this case, after marking the pertinent places, I pulled the pages that needed work and made copies of them. I saved the copies with the manuscript and sent the originals with the red markings back to the copy editor via regular mail. Then, truly, my job was finished except for approving the final front and back covers, and the final copyright page. Those were emailed to me via attachment within a week. With the Library of Congress number and ISBN number taken care of by Sonya Unrein, the final proof (the one that looks and feels like the real book) will be ordered. Once all of us at Seven Oaks Publishing sign off on that, the first printing of Beautiful Snare will be scheduled through our printer Lightning Source.
(If you have questions about the publishing process or if you wish to comment on this article, please email me directly through the contact page on this site. Thank you, Laurie)