Your First Draft is like the skeleton of a ship. How you lay the keel determines how successful that ship will be. Translating your concept into a book requires that you give it a structure that will float and that is a problem all writers face.
You have created the characters that live for you and created a story arc for them to live within. You have separated your concept into chapters and then chapters into rough paragraphs.
Now you need to know if your structure, content and organisation is working.
The Writers 4 Writers elite team of Beta Readers will go through your first draft and give you a written report on your work, including each story logic, chapter flow and character profile. All of this at a fraction of the cost of formal editing.
Structural or Chapter editing are construction edits and they usually deal with your second or third draft. At this stage, whole paragraphs or chapters might eventually be cut from your work so it is a total waste of time and money to pay someone to look at spelling and grammar.
The most efficient way to check your second draft is to use our team of elite Beta Readers at a fraction of the cost of formal editing. They will read through your work at a reasonably high level looking at:
- Chapter arc
- Character arc
- Confusing points
As well as our standard questionnaires, you will be able to ask your assigned Beta Reader to look out for specific points in your work. We will then prepare a formal report on each chapter or section of your manuscript.
You may then rewrite to create your third draft and this is the time for a comprehensive “Structural” or “Chapter” edit. If you are happy with your second draft, you may go straight to a formal Structural Edit.
A formal Structural Edit will look at the above as well as:
- Tone/overall word choice
- Narrative POV and consistency
- Paragraph to chapter structure
Under no circumstances ever “Accept All Changes” on any edit. Review every change yourself or you will never improve as a writer.
Your manuscript is on, at least, the fourth draft. Just the thought of your manuscript makes you feel physically sick; in fact, you would rather stick chopsticks in your eyes rather than read one word of it.
If this is how you feel, your work might finally be ready for a formal Line Edit, so check it again one more time. I guarantee that you will still find things that need changing.
Having done that you can give us a call to discuss your work. When we are certain that you won’t be wasting your money, we will complete a Line Edit:
- Sentence structure
- Word choice/tone
- POV and Clarity
We will highlight anything that will trip the reader and spin them out of your work. For example: repeated words, poor dialogue etc.
We do not use AI systems like Grammarly, as its suggestions are mostly useless, which means that authors end up paying out a lot of money to waste their own time. We only use genuine intelligent human editors to check your work word by word, line by line.
We edit in MS Word or Adobe Acrobat and your manuscript will be marked up for you to make what changes you feel appropriate.
It is a good idea for the author to discuss each of the editing points, if they are not immediately obvious, to make sure they agree. After all, writing is a subjective art and open to interpretation.
Your work is now on at least the fifth draft and is now ready to be laid out for publishing.
After all the hard work, you will need to sell your work to the public. You may publish in print, in digital format or both but whatever you decide your work will need to be laid out for publication in PDF (for Print) or in HTML of one form or another (Mobi, ePub).
Your text will need to be laid out for each publishing format individually.
A Proof Edit will include:
· Widows and Orphans
· Page numbering
· Tables and indexes
· Titles and headings
· Legal matter
If we have been engaged to lay your manuscript out, normally we do not charge for proofing. We do ask that authors check the work for themselves prior to publication and sign to say that they are happy with the work.
Elite Beta Readers
It is rare, in these difficult times, that people have the time to read a book from cover to cover over just a few days. Add to that the fact that you need more than “Yes it was alright” or “Yes I enjoyed it” as a response from a Beta Reader. In fact, we have found that unpaid Beta Readers are practically useless.
To this end, we have created our own team of Elite Beta Readers, all of whom have passed our unique Beta Reading exam and sign a Non-Disclosure Agreement that protects your work. Having your work Beta Read with our team is a minute fraction of the cost of a formal edit and often provides more useful information.
Authors work with us to create unique section questionnaires specifically for their work and we provide a written report on completion of the project. You can also discuss your work directly with the Beta Readers via Zoom.
Author Advice and Mentoring
Antonio Sebastian has always been a writer. When he was young he wrote for surf magazines and then, for thirty years, as a professional technical writer and engineer. For him, writing is a compulsion.
He has written several published technical papers on electromagnetics and textual criticism.
He has seven books published over the last seven years covering everything from Historical Fiction to Self-Help.
He is also a well known blogger, YouTuber and commentator.
His scientific and engineering background has given him a uniquely analytical approach. Using this understanding of structure, he has been able to give authors advice they could actually use without feeling like they are somehow less.
We offer a free 15 minute Zoom conference to discuss your work but we also offer more in-depth mentoring service, which is charged on an hourly basis.