Archives for indie publishing

I agree with… Val McDermid

Val McDermid “If I published my first three novels now, I wouldn’t have a career because no-one would publish my fourth novel based on the sales of my first three… Back in the day when I started you were still allowed to make mistakes, you got to make your mistakes in public, in a way. I think the world was a more forgiving place when I started my career [in 1987], in the sense that we got time and space to develop as a writer. That is definitely something that wouldn’t happen now. No-one will say, ‘Write half a dozen novels and find yourself’… If you don’t make the best-seller list, if you don’t get shortlisted for any prizes, it’s goodbye.” Val McDermid has sold 10 million books. Her first crime novel, Report for Murder, was published by Women’s Press in 1987 and was to be the first of a series about freelance journalist Lindsay Gordon. She wrote a crime novel, because she enjoyed reading them. McDermid went on to write the Tony Hill and Carol Jordan series. She is a highly-decorated and respected author. So for her to say she doesn’t think she would make it today as a
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Categories: Book Love and On Writing.

The copy-editing experience

This is an unusually long post from me today, as I want to write about copy-editing. One thing I wasn’t prepared for when preparing the manuscript (MS) of Ignoring Gravity for publication was copy-editing. This was something I just hadn’t got around to organising.It wasn’t that I didn’t know it would have to be edited, but I hadn’t factored in the time needed. The novel has been read so many times, in its many forms and with its different titles, by so many different people, surely copy-editing is just picking up bad punctuation? Wrong. I am so thankful that a journalist colleague now runs a copy-editing business. Dea Parkin [below] and I go back a long way, I trust her. Fiction Feedback gave me a brilliant service. I heard Dea gulp when I said she had a week to turn around the MS, and another gulp when I said it was 99,000 [alright, 100,000] word MS. But she did it. In fact we did have more time, and in the end Fiction Feedback read the MS three times. It was worth every penny. On all style points, Fiction Feedback refers to the Oxford English Dictionary, and New Hart’s Rules. The
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Categories: On Writing.