Self-publishing, ambitions and the lost virtue – manuscript editing

Category: Opinions
Self-publishing writing authors and novel

Though I like reading books and I don’t often look at the blurb to look for the information like the publisher and other details. However, do let me frankly tell something to my readers that a self-published book does not feel bad unless you encounter poorly or hurriedly edited text. Once that happens, my interest in reading and reviewing the book drastically demeans… eventually and subsequently, completely. I am not saying that all the books by self-published authors or all the self-published authors have this problem. This is largely because of the negligence and confusion of the publishers rather than the authors themselves. Self-publishing companies in India, even the best self-publishing companies in India, indulge in this unfair practice of getting the manuscripts poorly edited. It impacts the image of the author and hampers the reputation of the publishers as well. Still, it is a practice that is largely continuing.

Self-publishing is mostly about the ambition of a struggling author. It’s about getting a break and exhibiting one’s eagerness to write to the audience at large. At times, however, the over-indulgence in the process of self-publication just because it lets the authors skip many stages of publishing which becomes problematic and they tend to be gripped by eternally greedy publishers who are but ready to extort money and do nothing. In such cases, the first thing that is compromised is the quality of the text. The manuscript is accepted as it is. No consultation is held before or post-publication. And that’s where it becomes frustrating (at times) for the readers. At last, it is a reader who has to go through the poorly edited text!

Therefore, as a book critic, associated with one of the leading Indian book review sites, I would like to offer unsolicited advice to the writers. You can get published by any publisher in the world you want but do focus on your text. This is what will be a foundation on which your reputation will stand. If your text is well-edited, correct and appealing you will get many words of appreciation. However, a poorly edited or unedited draft, if published as a novel or a book in any genre, will bring only amusing comments which might end your career right at the beginning. Therefore, be very careful with what you choose. You can choose from a wide range of options if you want to self-publish your book in India or in any other country; at the same time, be wise while you make the decision and pick a publisher which emphasis on the importance of the text. That is where the game begins.

Here are a few ideal options that a good self-publishing company should offer you in terms of the manuscript:

  1. Pre-publication manuscript consultation
  2. Quality Editing
  3. Approval before finalising the draft
  4. Abstract consultation by experts
  5. Looking for overall text impression by employing beta readers
  6. Finally publishing the finalised manuscript with suggestions, changes and quality inputs

There are publishers in India offering such depth in their editing services. Self-publishing companies might charge a little extra for the dining job but that’s important if you are keen to get your book self-published. All the best!


by Ravi for Egoistic Readers

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