About Me

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I received teaching and engineering degrees and have traveled extensively, living ten years outside the US. I moved from the big city of Houston to a small sleepy community in North Carolina, which has been a tremendous change and a great inspiration for my novels, full of the local color. My time has been filled with writing and helping to physically construct three additions to our former farmhouse. I have a great view of the mountains ten miles away across the broad valley and the sunsets are breathtaking. I am an avid reader of all kinds of mystery and contemporary fiction.

Friday, March 30, 2012

How Do You Edit Your eBook?

Editing My eBook ‘Murder by the Clock

No one likes to edit their ebook once it’s been written. It’s over. Publish it. Get it out there. But nobody likes fixing mistakes after it’s published. Bad karma. However, I have read so many Indie ebooks with so many mistakes that I would say “I will not buy another book by that author.” Does that sound petty? I don’t think so. Language is important. Some say, “The Devil is in the details.” Others say, “God is in the details.” In any event, noticing the spelling, punctuation or other details take the reader away from the story. Not good. The story is all important. That’s what we’re selling. It’s like selling bananas. If there are big black bruises, nobody buys. So, it’s important that I edit my ebook ‘Murder by the Clock’ carefully. I don’t want big black bruises.

I did several things to make sure that my book was edited well.

1. I ran the novel through the spell checker. The spell checker may disagree, but make sure that anything it finds is actually OK before leaving it in.

2. I read my book five times to make sure there were no words that the spell checker didn’t catch. For example, duplicate words and words that were correctly spelled but were not the correct word.

3. In reading, I also made sure that quotes were not missing or added where not needed. Likewise, commas.

4. I read ‘Murder by the Clock’ again with action words in mind. Weak verbs make the novel weak. Avoid the word very. Minimize adverbs.

5. I checked that there was at least a space or stars between a change of scenes in a chapter. Nothing frustrates me more than a change of point of view or scene without advance notice. I hate reading a paragraph and asking, “What happened? Where am I? Who’s talking? What happened to the other guy?”

6. I had someone else read my novel. Another two eyes and another brain are always a good addition. It’s even better if the reader likes the genre.

Even after all this, I’m sure that ‘Murder by the Clock’ may contain a few mistakes. However, by doing the above steps, I make sure that fewer mistakes will remain and that my reader will have the best possible reading experience I can provide.

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