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Crash Course: How To Edit Your Novel

Lesson 16: The Last Read-Through

By now, your manuscript will have gone through a round of structural editing, copyediting, and further changes via beta reader.

What we recommend here is one last read-through to make sure that the numerous changes you’ve made all fit seamlessly within your manuscript and haven’t caused new issues.

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This can be more of a ‘skim-reading’ exercise, as the final proofread is still to come.

Task: 

1. Make a list of any potential issues that may have occurred while you made additional changes.

2. Have this list beside you for reference, and perform a quick read-through of your manuscript (how extensive or in-depth you make it is up to you). Look out for these issues and anything else that might need fixing.




3. Make any necessary changes to your document.

Lesson 17: Complete The Proofread

The final proofread is the last stage before submitting your work to publishers. You want to make sure that you’re sending out the best possible version of your book.

Proofreading is checking the final product for errors and typos that may have been missed or introduced during the production process.

There is no revision of anything other than minor errors during a proofread.

Task: 

1: Print out your novel (most writers find it easier to proofread from paper as opposed to screen). Alternatively, you can use Track Changes in Word.

2: Line-by-line, proofread your novel, amending any errors as you go.

3: Create a new document for your manuscript. Save this as ‘TITLE-FINAL-DATE’.

4: Make your corrections to this document and save.

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Conclusion

 

Congratulations! You’ve made it through the complex process of editing your novel.Not only do you now have a completed and beautifully polished book – you’re also ready to start the submission process, or to look into self-publishing your novel.

Completing this course and putting time and effort into editing your novel has given you the best possible chance at successful publication. Whichever way you go from here, you can rest assured that your hard work has taken the novel to the next level. It’s now ready to go out into the world.




This is an incredible achievement, and you should be immensely proud.

But don’t jump into the next stage just yet. Take some time to relax, and to celebrate. You’ve earned it.