I’ve taken two more huge steps on my journey to “indie authordom”: editing and cover art.
A major complaint about indie books is the lack of editing, which translates to poor quality. From what I’ve been able to glean, many indie authors skimp on this step because 1) they think they can’t afford it and 2) they think they don’t need it.
Trying to edit your own book yourself is a little like that old saying about the lawyer who represents himself – something about having a fool for a client. In my past life, I served as a de facto proofreader and editor for the PR and advertising agencies I worked for, so I’ve got a pretty good eye for typos and such. However, I decided I would be a fool not to find the money to pay a professional copyeditor to comb through my manuscript. I was further proven right when I gave my manuscript one last pass before sending it out—I found a typo. And this was after poring over this thing, no kidding, at least 50 times in the last three months. This is too important to me not to do everything I can do make sure the book I put out looks as professional as possible.
Another non-negotiable was hiring a designer to craft a professional looking cover. I’ve read about different indie authors who designed their own covers and I’m here to tell you, I won’t be one of them. While I’m a lot more confident about my proofing/editing abilities, I am not a graphic artist. AT ALL. When I was forced to take Art 101 in college, by the end of the semester, I pulled out what little hair I had left. My bowls of fruit always looked more like a game of Pick Up Sticks. I read lots of advice about how I could download various graphics programs and manipulate stock images, but it’s just not in my wheelhouse. While I definitely have a vision for what I want for my cover, I need a professional to help me bring it to life.
After scouring the Internet, I found an editor and a graphic artist who both offered reasonable prices. I’m thrilled with their enthusiasm for my book and I can’t wait to share my cover and blurb very soon.
I have a few more steps I need to take before I release my book, but overall, I am thrilled with where I am in the process.
As always, though, back to writing.