One of the requirements for making a good book-- or making a book good-- is editing. A good publisher uses not just one editor, not just a proofread or a copy edit, but serious craptastic editing-- from after your manuscript is accepted for publication until the final proof is sent to the printer.
At WiDo, I have been involved in all aspects of editing: reviewing submissions, line by line revisions with authors, copy editing finished manuscripts, and proofreading the typeset proofs. Once I had to re-edit a published book that had too many mistakes slip through and needed to be reprinted. If you have published with WiDo, I guarantee at some point I have looked at your manuscript along with about four to six other people.
That is a whole lot of editing that goes into one single manuscript. I absolutely LOVE it!! It's thrilling to see a project come together from the beginning. You take a darn good first submission and after a series of editing events along with some skilled design work, you have the polished, pretty, published book ready to sell.
There's a lot that goes into the making of a book. But the Big E-- Editing-- is key to making the writer's work shine. If you plan to self-publish, get yourself an English grammar and composition book-- in fact get several-- and study punctuation like your career depends on it.Okay, not just if you plan to self-publish. Nothing will get a rejection faster than a query letter full of punctuation mistakes.
When you're not sure about comma placement, go look it up. Don't just guess or rely on your Word Processor. It's okay to be casual and informal about all this when writing blogs and emails but in publishing, the rules of Standard English apply.
Comma placement, misuse of capitals, run-on sentences and countless other issues lurk between the lines to jump out and distract the reader who just spent good money on a book they expected to be polished and professional.
E is for Editing!
"Never give up. And most importantly, be true to yourself. Write from your heart, in your own voice, and about what you believe in." ~ Louise Brown
"Write something to suit yourself and many people will like it; write something to suit everybody and scarcely anyone will care for it." ~Jesse Stuart
"A writer's job is to take one thing and make it stand for twenty." ~ Virginia Woolf