Well now, good evening to you all once again. Today, I got up ready for work, uniform on, mind set in chasing more endless white lines, when the phone rang. It was work………could I take one of my holiday days today as there wasn’t much to be done at the depot. Now, having thought about it and been denied any time off over the Christmas period, yes, I’m trucking Christmas Eve, then finishing around 8pm to head 260 miles South to join the family, for essentially one day down in Kent, then back up Boxing Day ready for work the next day, so not too much of a festive break here I can tell you. Anyway, I digress, having thought about it I agreed to take the day off and set about finding things to do with my unexpected free time. I browsed through my tweets, checked the emails and chased up the rather annoying edited Salby Damned for smashwords, which is proving to be a bit of a nightmare to get right, however, that’s another blog post for another time.
A dear friend of mine, fellow indie author Sallyann Phillips, gave me her book some time ago now, to read and tell her what I thought of it, so I opened up the file and picked up from my last session with it, still engrossed by the tale with each word read. Then I thought about editing and, with her permission I set about editing out some of the minor things that I picked up on. Nothing major, we all make the same or similar mistakes as we learn to write books, and I’m no professional editor. With that in mind, I completed the first chapter, edited it, and have sent the edited file back over to Sallyann to take a look at before I continue. Obviously, with a couple of us volunteering to edit her work and help out, she may decide to keep some parts and change others. But for me, I have found it comforting in a world where competition is extremely fierce, and good, genuine friends are hard to come by, that someone would send their prized work to me on the basis of trust alone. It is a rare quality indeed.
I am no critic/critique expert however, I do tend to tell it like it is sometimes, in the same line, I admire people who also speak their mind, provided that they take the time to explain why and have a good basis of knowledge upon which to ground their views. Anything else is simply not constructive to the already struggling indie author. I have had a great day editing this story, reading it and feeling the scenes as they play out, trying not to change it too much from how Sallyann wanted it to be, with only the odd minor tweek here and there which I hope she will find helpful along with the others offering assistance.
The thing about Indie Authors doing it all themselves is that we don’t have thousands of pounds to feed editors, proof readers, critics and the like, we ARE all of the above. Having bought many an indie book recently, I understand this and make allowances for the odd grammatical error, a missing comma or a typo here and there, not least because I know how hard it is to go it alone and that’s before you even delve into the world of actually trying to sell your book. So here’s the crux of it……………
I will continue to buy indie works, not least because some of the stories are, without a doubt, brilliant – even if not written perfectly. I urge anyone buying a new authors work to cut them a little slack, review the story by all means and advise them by PM or email of issues that you have found in their work. Give them a chance to respond and learn from it first, you never know, you may just make a new friend of the author and it’s always good to know someone who can write.