The Mail I Get — What Happens After You Turn In Your Book?

Charmi congratulated me on turning in MR. MONK AND THE DIRTY COP and asked:

Out of curiousity, how much work will you still have to do on it? At this point in writing Monk novels, do you get many change requests from the editor? Or, can you pretty much consider this "done"?

I'm sure that's a question a lot of you have, so here's what I told her:

I usually don't get any major notes from MONK creator Andy Breckman or my editor, so the next step will be to go through the copy-edited manuscript. That's basically my own manuscript sent back to me, all marked up, after my editor and the copy editor have gone through it, spotting typos, punctuation errors, inconsistencies, awkward phrases etc. They will make suggestions on the page for corrections,  changes and clarifications. They will also suggest trims or places where I might want to go into more detail…but the choice is mine. For the most part, it's very minor stuff and I get through it very quickly. It's also my last chance to do any rewriting that I want to do for creative reasons…which usually only amounts to a line or two, here and there.

A month or two after that, I will receive the typeset galley, also known as the advance proofs, which is basically an unbound version of what the final book will look like. The editor, copyeditor and I read through it for errors (although we inevitably miss two or three big ones, much to my embarrassment) and send it on to production.

At that point, my job on the book is done…if you don't count promotion (like going to book signings, attending conferences, speaking at libraries, etc.)

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