This is it, this is your FINAL review before you upload and hit publish. I’ve used each of these techniques. Some are tried and true advice that you have probably heard from other authors. Overall these are the 5 things that I would recommend that you do to get your manuscript in tip-top shape.
1. Go Slow, take breaks – Your mind can only process so much, especially when you have already read this thing a dozen times.
2. Read it as though you are your biggest critic – Now this can be dangerous because after an hour you might want to throw it away. But look at it with a critical eye.
3. Read backwards, then forwards – Ok so with this technique go to the end of that paragraph. Read the final sentence. Out of context it is easier for you to catch what if you wrote “to” instead of “the” or any number of content or grammatical errors. Once you work your way up, then read the entire paragraph through.
4. Read aloud – yes, again! – I would recommend doing this with another person sitting next to you and reading along with you. It is hard to read slow when you get into the groove or into the story. That person over your shoulder can say “uh you said this but that’s not what is written, is that what you meant?” If you don’t have a person over your shoulder, try recording it and then playing it back as you follow along with your eyes.
5. Question every reference (For Fiction: so and so lifted their right arm to check the time on their watch. Do you mention the watch again? Did they just lose their right arm in a battle? For Non-fiction: every reference to “in a study conducted by” look it up again, make sure it is in the bibliography FOR THAT CHAPTER. If you reference this study multiple time in the book, reference in the bibliography multiple times.)
BONUS TIP: I also run all of my text through Grammarly as I am formatting it for one final, final check. This is my go-to service, it does way better than the built-in spell and grammar check in my word processor: https://grammarly.go2cloud.org/SH2QA
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Have a great day and now you can get back to writing or editing your book!
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