When was the last time you read a book out loud? I can say for me personally it was last year. I was not reading it to a child or a group of children. I was not reading it to anyone in particular. I was actually just reading my latest project.
We, as writers, will edit our WIP and edit it to death only to do it a few more times. But we won’t catch everything. Hence why we have beta readers, critique groups and poor souls who we ask for help. That will get more if not all of the mistakes out of your manuscript.
But there is always the mistakes that no one sees. But we are not just talking about grammar. I’m talking about loopholes, inconsistencies and the likes. That is how I found out in my Jasper series I had named their mom Sally by the name of Sarah and a few other S names. No one had picked up on that. But after reading it out loud I caught it.
Yes, it is time-consuming and you will want to rush it or maybe stop completely, especially if your novel runs in the thousands of words. So how important is it to you? How perfect do you want it to be? Are you okay, once the book goes to print only to find mistakes?
It all depends on how you want your work and you to be represented. We are not going to get all the mistakes every single time but a good effort certainly can’t hurt.
How important in having a decent cover for your book matters to you? Not sure? Let me ask a different way. When you are in a bookstore, yes they still exist, and going up and down the aisle what catches your eye to pick up a book? Is it the cover? Is it the synopsis on the back? Perhaps it is both. There are sooooo many books out there competing for buyers attention each wanting you to pick it up and examine it. One way is to get a cover that is pleasing to the eye.
One of my writer friends from Canada just requested her rights back and signed up with a different publisher. The graphic artist she is working with now gave her a cover that dissolved her into tears. The main reason being the design that was presented to her had nothing to do with the theme of the book. And when she asked for our honest opinion I told her how it was not very good. Well, the design was good but it did not describe the pages inside.
Creating a cover, whether you do it or a publishing house, to make your book be pleasing is the first step into finding a reader and hopefully a long life fan. It is that important. We can talk about the hook of our manuscript all day long. But if you cover turns away potential buyers they will never get to see if your hook will make them fall madly in love with the rest of your novel.