I once had a college professor remind me that, in some professions, doing everything right means most people won’t see the work you did. I can’t remember now if the advice came as part of a journalism or editing course, but after several years of working in both fields, I’ll admit it seems to apply to either fairly well. A good editor’s work will be invisible in the final version of a story and recognized only by the author. And in the world of journalism, criticism is almost always more common, or at least louder, than praise. (It’s especially true if your story topic waxes political, but I digress.)
It’s nice that the same isn’t necessarily true for authors. Right?
Well, sort of. We all receive reviews of our finished books from readers—ideally, plenty of positive ones. But even in our profession, there are so many elements of the publication process that can go unnoticed or unappreciated. These steps are often tedious and time-consuming on our end yet essential to the process of creating that finished work. And if we do them right, almost no one will even notice them.
This issue focuses on interior formatting, one of those “invisible” steps in indie publishing. It may not be the most glamorous or the easiest part of bringing a book to life, and it certainly isn’t something most of your readers will acknowledge…unless you do it poorly. But it’s paramount to making your story readable, your print book look professional, and your e-book accessible. Your readers may never comment on your book’s margins or running heads in their reviews, but that’s okay.
Sometimes, it’s praise enough to be invisible.
Editor in Chief