If writing a book is hard work, at least it is your work, your words. Editing and typesetting have their attractions; it need not be humiliating but in fact can be a revelation to see a wordsmith at work, cutting and polishing your text, while it should be interesting to see how your text can be transformed from ordinary words on paper into something extra, a visual experience.
But proofing? In a word, tedious.
Tedious though it might seem, proofing is unavoidable so let’s get moving. (Or is it unavoidable? Something to consider, as you will see in an upcoming post.)
In an earlier post, I outlined a common sequence of phases in the typesetting and proofing of a book. These were:
- Initial typesetting
- Output of first proofs
- First proofing
- Completion of typesetting
- Output of second (often the ‘final’) proofs
- Second (or ‘final’) proofing and indexing
- Output of print-ready copy
- Final-copy check
The typesetting part of this sequence has been described already. Indexing will be treated separately in a thread of posts following this section on proofing. And, as for the final two steps above dealing with the print-ready copy, these will be picked up in the section on printing your book.
In the meantime, however, we shall follow a thread of posts on the proofing process. Here, I shall look more closely at the first and second proofs as well as issues related to them.
- Why proof your book?
- Who proofs?
- Proofing outputs
- First proofs
- Making proof corrections
- Common proofing marks
- How much can you change at proofing?
- Final proofs
Tedious? Not necessarily.