Just wrote those two wonderful words, “The End”. But it’s not, really. There’s much work to do polishing the manuscript to make it ready for publication. First, after taking a deep breath (and maybe a day off), I start reading the text out loud. One hears with a different ear and it’s amazing what I can uncover: clunky dialogue, ambiguous sentences, filler dialogue that doesn’t move the narrative forward, it goes on.

Then I “wash” the manuscript through two different editing programs, ProWritingAid and Grammarly. Both find different issues. I reject many of their suggestions as they are only semi-intelligent programs, after all, but they do catch many issues such as passive voice, repeated words and phrases, and complicated sentences that should be written more clearly.

During this period, I send the text out to a few alpha readers who provide critical feedback. These are people who understand writing and have read a great deal. Their feedback is extremely valuable to the polishing process. All this is to let you know some of the work that goes on after completing the storyline. I’m well into it with “The Revenger” and should have the book out next month.

If you’d like to be a beta reader, someone who reads the, now hopefully, finished text, let me know by reply email. A beta reader is someone who reviews the text from the reader’s POV, not as an editor or writing expert, but a reader. Did the story grab your attention from the start? Did it flag or fall apart anywhere? Were there any parts that seemed too unreal? (These usually jar the reader out of the story.) Such comments are important to help me uncover parts of the book that might interfere with the reader’s immersive experience in the storyline.

If this interests you, I’ll send you a PDF of the manuscript. I get your feedback, you get a “free” read, and you know you’ve contributed to the novel’s success. It’s an important part of the process, and one most readers never get asked to participate in.

As always, I am thankful for all my readers who anticipate each story and support my writing. It’s why I write my stories. I’ll let you know when I set up the book for pre-release ordering. In the meantime, you can find the rest of the Dan Stone or Jason Richards series here on my website. Click on a cover, and you’ll be sent to the Amazon order page.

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