9 Critical Steps to Successful Self-Publishing: Tip 1
Tip 1: You’re a writer; you are not an editor or proofreader (even if that’s your day job). You simply cannot edit or proofread your own book.
● When you read your own book, you anticipate what you’re reading and don’t notice the errors (for example, did you notice the second “your” in the previous sentence?). This requires the services of a copyeditor.
● It is also hard for the author who knows his or her story well to evaluate if the book has any logical gaps or is missing key information that will keep the reading public from understanding or fully appreciating your work. That’s why you need an objective set of eyes on your book. While it’s helpful to have friends (who will be honest with you) read your book, you still require the services of a developmental editor to evaluate the book, as a whole, and a proofreader to catch any errors. (I include a list of approximate costs for each of these services in How Much Does it Cost to Self-Publish a Book?)
To find a qualified editor or proofreader:
- Search the Editorial Freelancers Association (http://www.the-efa.org/) or organizations of writers and editors in your area (in San Diego, there is the San Diego Professional Editors Network: SD/PEN (http://www.sdpen.com/); there are likely to be a similar organizations in your area); or
- Look for professionals on such work-for-hire sites as Elance (www.Elance.com) or Thumbtack (www.Thumbtack.com). You can also
- Email the author of an independently published book that you felt was well-written and free of errors, and ask for a referral to his or her editor and/or proofreader. (Authors are more likely to refer you to their copyeditor, proofreader, and even book cover designer than traditionally published authors are to refer you to their agents.)