I knew that C.S. Lewis and I had more in common than our Christianity when he said, "You can never get a cup of tea large enough or a book long enough to suit me." Welcome to a celebration of faith, tea, and the written word. I'm always engaged in a book, and whether it's one I'm reading or one of the inspirational historical romances I write, there's always a cup of tea close by. Join me in a cup as we chat about faith, our favorite books and the exciting places our reading and writing adventures take us.

Saturday, June 18, 2016

From Edits to Galleys with my Upcoming Barbour Novella

The Rails to Love Collection releases in October, 2016, and it's almost ready to be printed! Last week I received a copy of the galleys, which is a pdf document of the pages as they'll appear in the book.

The galleys are the final stage in the editing process. My job now is to review my novella, The Honeymoon Express.

So what happens from the time a novella is submitted to Barbour until the galleys stage? The process might be different for each author and/or each story, but here's what my experiences have looked like so far:

  • The novella undergoes content, copy, and line edits by a professional editor and is then returned to the author for changes. The edits/suggested edits/questions are noted using the track changes feature in Word.
  • The author changes her manuscript, and the changes show in a different color of track changes, so the editors can tell what the author did, as opposed to what the editor suggested. At this stage, the author can also make changes the editor didn't request, and add dedications or acknowledgments, although that often happens when the novella is first submitted to the editor. But if some aspect of the novella has bothered the author since she submitted it, or she wants to add a detail here or there, this is the time to do it.
  • The editor reviews the author's changes. Occasionally, the editor might have additional questions for the author, and the above process repeats.
  • When satisfied, the editor okays it and sends it higher up the chain. The novella might be edited  or tweaked further, but these changes are minor.
  • The book is compiled into "book form"--the document looks like a book now, and we are in the galleys stage. A pdf of the galleys is sent to the author for review.
  • The author may wish to make small changes, but this is not the time to alter the plot, change someone's hair color, etc. If the author sees something she'd like to tweak, she can make note in a separate Word document, but cannot make changes to the pdf (because, well, it's a pdf). These are sent back to Barbour.
  • That's it! No more editing, no more changes.
  • Then, one amazing day a few weeks before the book's release, a box arrives on the author's porch. It's her book!
My experience with the editing process at Love Inspired has been different, and I'll fill you in on that with another post later, but I thought you might be interested in how your favorite novellas come to be!


Karen Lange said...

You know, they say writing is a journey - I have to agree. Especially when you consider this stage of the process. Most readers have no idea of what goes into a good book. Congratulations, Susie! So excited for you. We'll have to plan on you visiting my blog to share the news. :)

Susanne Dietze said...

I have certainly learned a lot through this process, Karen! The industry is fascinating, and so much happens that I never knew about as a reader.

I'd love to visit! Thanks!