As your grow in your writing you learn tricks of the trade. These are invaluable for they help save you time and also improve your manuscript. Than there are the tips you might hear about from other writers when they share what they have heard used.
When someone said that they read their works backup my head immediately looked up to turn to look at her. This was at my critique group. I was surprised. I was even more surprised when I saw some of the other members nod their head.
What the heck? Read your manuscript backwards? According to them when you read your manuscript forwards your mind tricks you into believing you have read every word but what happens is your mind skims over words especially if you have read your WIP to heck and back. When you read backwards your mind is not able to do this as readily because after all who reads a book backwards. By doing so you catch errors that might have been missed and errors that were big that could have made your manuscript tank.
Reading online about this shortly after the meeting I found out this was an actual thing. It is not something I had done at this point. Yes I have read a page or two but nothing significant. I keep telling myself I will do it. If it is another tool to make your work pop I need to make an honest effort to try it for myself. Thank goodness my children series are not so long. But oh man when and if I do the novels that are in the 50k. It will take me convincing myself a lot to give this a go.
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.