|This is the "SLUSH PILE." Too many manuscripts to read!|
7. First of all, the editor does not want to see your entire story. Why not? See picture. If you get the go-ahead to send something in (that sweet editor from the expensive writers' conference told you to!) you send in a synopsis (summary of the story) and ONE sample chapter (always send in the first chapter.) "But what if my Chapter 2 is more interesting?" Answer: Make Chapter 2 your Chapter 1. End of discussion. If you can't hook the editor with your first few pages, let alone your first chapter, believe me, he is not going to skip ahead to the "good parts."
8. Fortunately for me, the editor liked what he read in the summary and asked for the entire manuscript. But that didn't mean they were going to publish it! No, not by a long shot. They had to read it and decide. This takes a long, long time. For me it took a FULL YEAR! The editor contacted me a couple of times and asked if I was willing to change some things (the answer to that is always a YES). I pretty much figured they'd dropped off the planet, and I was ready to move on, when . . .
|Look over your contract carefully!|
10. Just when you think everything is going right, the editor starts marking up your manuscript. Wait. Didn't that mentor/author friend mark it up already? Yes. Now it's time for the official editing. Ouch. Usually two editors take turns. One looks for overall flaws (of which there are many), and later the other editor looks for mistakes (of which there are many). Together, along with the author, the story gets another beating . . . oops . . . revision. But it is worth it. I have wished I could go back and rewrite a couple parts in some of my published books, but I have NEVER wished the editors had left it alone. They get paid to make the book better. They want to SELL the thing, remember. They are very good at their job. And now they are my friends. But it still hurts. In fact, my 17th book manuscript, Thick as Thieves, just got a good beating last week. Oh, which reminds me . . . the book has been bumped to the next selling cycle. Instead of coming out next October, it is releasing next January. *big sigh*
11. Finally, the manuscript goes to what is called "layout." Here they make the manuscript look like the inside pages of a real book. It's a shivery feeling to see those pages. They come as hard copy, and this is the VERY LAST TIME anyone will ever touch the book. It is called the PROOFREAD. After this, the book heads for the printer.
12. In the meantime, other people at the publishing company have been working hard to create just the right cover. Most of you have probably seen the final Circle C Adventures covers. But I bet you've never seen the "almost" covers. Here they are. For one reason or another, these cover ideas were not chosen.
Read Part 4!
|I liked this one, but Kregel decided on the other.|
|Yikes! Taffy's head is sticking out of the house!|
|What do you think? :-)|
|I actually like this one better. Too late.|