I have been spending a large amount of time going through my book, Time Well Spent to get it ready for Creataspace publication. I figured that is the next step since so many have commented on how they really want it in hard-copy.
First I started with the cover. I had a fantastic one picked out to work on, sexy scene, the whole bit. Then I decide that may not be the best way to go. When people are reading erotica, they don’t like to announce to the whole world, yep! I love reading erotica! When I have purchased it, it has a very subtle cover, if not just words and a picture that really says nothing about what the book is about.
I decide to wait on that, start preparing the book for publication. The other thing about this particular book is that I had written it with no names in the story, well except one story, so people can easily imagine themselves as the characters. The limited feedback I have got basically says that they like names better, so yep, going to do this edition with names. Of course that means going through each story and making changes.
I had noticed that on Smashwords, I get a lot of sample downloads but not many sales in this particular book. I thought that odd in a way, figured this book must really suck if they can’t get past the first bit and want to read more. I have just finished up the book tour promoting it and still sales are not very good. Well I may be onto something in changing my book so it has names I think?
Here I am, going through my book and I find one error after another. What? That doesn’t make sense. How could this be? How bloody irritating! Heck I had gone through it multiple times, how did I miss the changes that needed to be made still? (An error to me could even be as simple as one or two missed word placements for a story in the collection of 15 short stories in the book. One error to me is too many for my books!)
I have heard other writers complain about this too, they have editors looking through their books, even just readers that highlight errors and still there are problems. Granted even traditionally published books have errors, heck I own a few that are horribly edited in fact that are traditionally published. Of course my book has no errors in it! I made sure!
So what I have learned from this experience? Always read through your work no matter what professional goes through it, paid or unpaid. If someone says that the editing has problems, go back through it. Things can be missed. Not everyone is a Grammar Nazi as some say they are. It is distracting to be reading along and a word that should not be there is suddenly there. When there is a lot like that through the story, it is hard to continue to read the book. It distracts from the story.
Don’t get me wrong, I am going through each of my books at the moment and making sure that there are no errors in them. If I find any, I will be fixing them. This is not to say in any way that they all need fixed because they don’t; it is just a realization that there is no way I am alone in this and well, I am somewhat of a perfectionist in some things :o)
Editors are people too, they make mistakes and each author needs to really look at their work to make sure that it is what they want out there. If not, fix it! Hire a new editor. I have yet to find the program that will find every single error in a book on the computer. People make mistakes… fortunately they can be fixed :O)