Ever wondered if you could publish a book on your own? On this blog, I am starting a series going through the steps to do just that.
First things first. Steps 1-3
Step number one-finish your manuscript. (seems obvious, doesn't it?)
Step two-Once finished, and hopefully you used a critique group to help you along the way, give it out to about 10 beta-readers (these are people who love to read and will be honest with you-not family members).
Ask them to have a notebook or paper handy while they read to jot down things that come to their minds like: I'm losing interest here, I totally don't understand this, why would this happen, this doesn't sound like the character I know, I love this part, and any grammar problems they stumble across. Once they've finished, interview them and take notes.
Step three, after you've gotten all 10 beta-readers' feedback and have made the changes that need to be made, have your work edited by an editor. Pick someone you like and who fits your style of writing. There's nothing worse than an editor messing with your character's voice if it's just fine. It should be a content and grammar edit. Do not skip this step!
Come back next week for step four.