Taking the first draft of your non-fiction manuscript to polished book

Taking the first draft of your non-fiction manuscript to polished book

February 24, 2022

‘I’m wrestling with an edit and intend to never have another idea for as long as I live. Ideas are where the trouble begins! The absolute pits! Down with ideas!’ – Emily Gale.

This tweet by Australian author and manuscript assessor Emily Gale had me in stitches…so much so I asked her for permission to include it in the chapter on editing in Look – It’s Your Book!.

Emily’s take on how hard it can be for authors when ‘wrestling’ with an edit is so true.

Writers have already run a brain and fingertip marathon to get the first draft down, and then to realise ‘we’re not there yet’ can leave us feeling overwhelmed. But if you know that rewriting is just part of the process, it can also allow us to have more flow and speed in getting the first draft written in the first place. That’s because the pressure is off as you know there will be time and space to rewrite and improve it later!

Editing is a crucial element in the production of any quality traditional or self-published book. From initial self editing (there are plenty of tips in the book that show you how to self edit) to first readers, using software programs such as ProWritingAid or Grammarly, tapping into professional manuscript appraisers and editors and more.

Editing is not something you can skip if you want to deliver a great book to your readers. And that needs to be your author goal: a great book.

So here’s to ideas and all the efforts we writers and authors put in to actually bring them to life.