The proof versions of my books finally arrrived last week and I have to say that I was (and still am) very impressed by the quality of the printing. I'm not sure quite what I was expecting but, as I looked them over, I knew they could hold their own against books which are more conventionally published. I made a quick dash into Waterstone's one lunch hour just to double check and yes, the two Burly & Grum books would look darn good up there on the shelves!
Once the copies had been duly admired and shown to everyone, out came the pen to make all the necessary corrections. It's amazing how much easier it is to edit a book when it looks like a book! For example, looking at them made me immediately realise that single line spacing wasn't going to work and I changed to one and a half line spacing. I've also removed end of line justification. Hopefully, making these changes will make it easier for children to read the stories.
The two books have now been edited to within an inch of their lives although, having said that, my friend James pointed out that I'd missed the 'r' out of the word 'brother'. Do you know how many times I've read that book?! Just how I missed it I've no idea but I have a feeling that one or two more typos could still lurking within the pages somewhere just waiting to embarrass me at some point!
Now I'm just waiting for the pictures to be rescanned at a higher quality and then I'll resubmit the books to Createspace and then - yes, they'll be real - people will be able to buy print versions!
Sometimes I feel as if I'm moving very slowly through this whole process and other times I look back over the last few months and think I've accomplished a great deal. Although the Secret City is still being downloaded at a very healthy rate from Amazon.com I have to work on a marketing plan for the books, especially here in the UK, so that when I start charging money they won't fall flat on their faces. Hopefully by Christmas the third book, the print version and the audio versions will all be ready and people will want to buy them. It would be a nice ho ho ho sort of moment if they were!