Writer, you know your book manuscript backward, forward, inside and out. And why shouldn’t you? You’ve edited and proofread every line so often, you’re probably seeing bright red proofreading marks in your sleep. But before you self-publish your book, the grammar gurus at Self-Publishing Relief have a few words of advice: Hire an editor or proofreader to take one last look.
Why? Because you’ve read your book too many times to catch all the errors. Every independent author should have their book professionally proofread and/or edited before they self-publish! Trust us, this is not the time to cut corners. If you think your book may need help with plot or characters, you’ll want to work with a developmental editor. And if you need another pair of eyes to catch spelling and grammatical errors, you’ll want a copyeditor or proofreader.
3 Reasons Why It’s Important To Hire A Proofreader Or Editor Before Self-Publishing
First impressions are important! Readers may not judge your book by its cover, but they sure will judge it by the typos! (Actually, they WILL judge your book by its cover too.) A book filled with typos or plot arc issues will seem unprofessional and poorly written. And disappointing your readers now could impact the sales of your future books, even if you do have them properly edited and proofread. Don’t get a reputation for low-quality writing!
Reviews can make or break your book sales. Good reviews encourage potential buyers to purchase your book, and Amazon uses book sales and positive reviews to determine rankings. Typos, grammar mistakes, and poor quality production all negatively affect how readers will review your book. Don’t let an otherwise stellar story suffer because proofreading errors are mentioned in the reviews! Here’s how to get more readers to write reviews of your book.
Professional book reviewers will also look much more favorably on your self-published book if it’s fully polished. Getting good reviews from the industry is crucial to garnering more readers and boosting your sales! Check out this indie-author’s guide to paid reviews.
Self-publishing happens faster. Unlike traditional publishing, where it can be many months before a book is published, self-publishing can be completed much faster. But if you push to get your book self-published in a matter of weeks, you run a much bigger risk of mistakes slipping through. Even though you want to get your story out in the world as soon as possible, taking the extra time to have it professionally proofread and edited will ensure that buyers find your book worth reading.
How To Find A Good Editor Or Proofreader
You’ll want to hire a proofreader or editor who has experience—and who also fits your budget. Here are a few tips to keep in mind.
Ask other authors who have self-published books. A good reference from a friend or writer peer will help you feel confident about a proofreader’s or editor’s skills and professionalism. Some of the members of your writing group may have used freelance editors and proofreaders and can give you the scoop on who to work with—or who to avoid. You might also consider contacting other indie authors through their websites for recommendations.
Turn to your self-publishing company. Many self-publishing companies have professional proofreaders, copyeditors, and developmental editors on staff. And here at Self-Publishing Relief, we have a team of expert proofreaders with years of experience!
Do your research. A Google search can help you come up with some names—but be sure to read their reviews to make sure you’ve found the best match for you, your book, and your budget.
What To Do After You Get Your Book Back From Your Editor Or Proofreader
Once your book is back from the proofreader or editor, review any edits and proofreading comments with a fine-toothed comb. Keep an open mind but remember, if you don’t agree with a suggestion, you don’t have to accept it! Even with edits and proofing, your book should still be uniquely your own.
If the idea of trying to find a proofreader on your own seems daunting, Self-Publishing Relief is always here for you! Schedule a free consultation today.
Question: What’s the biggest proofreading or editing error you’ve seen in a book?