That moment you’ve been waiting for, when you open up the file and they’ve turned your manuscript into a book with pages, numbers, and chapter titles. My name is on the top of every left hand page, and the book title is on the top of every right hand page. There are simple artistic touches and fancy fonts, ISBNs, copyrights, and… a lot of formatting problems!
I was quite emotional when I first saw the way they’d put it all together. I couldn’t have asked for better, to be honest. I gave them very little to go on, just some basic cover ideas, and the rest was up to the designer. The cover still isn’t quite right, but with some discussion and a smart idea from the designer herself, it will hopefully be fixed. Then there’s this formatting issue. Having never done this before, I wasn’t sure if this was normal. Having only got to chapter 7, after almost a week, with reams of notes that largely identified missing paragraph breaks, I presumed that this was the whole point of my first real proof read. Then my husband pointed out to me that, surely in this day and age, shouldn’t it be relatively easy to convert a Word document manuscript into book format? It would appear not!
So I took his advice about just getting in touch with my manager and questioning it. I’ve mentioned before that I have a good relationship with her and feel I can pretty much ask her anything, no matter how stupid I worry it might be. Turned out to be a good call, literally. She was soooo glad I highlighted this early in my proof read because yes, basically the formatting should have been done better than it had been, and this would have been a HUGE waste of my time if I’d got to the end of the book with my 5 million pages of notes only to find it could have been easily fixed. I guess I’ll know for next time – hopefully there will be a next time!
Meanwhile, it is being reformatted…