A few people have been asking for an update on my novel, The Silk Romance, which is due to be published in May, so here goes! (And for those of you who’d like to know what the novel’s about, please check out my Silk Romance page.)
The short answer – for those who don’t want to read through my usual waffle! – is that The Silk Romance is now available for pre-order here (in e-format) from my publishers, MuseItUp, and will be available from the usual retailers – Amazon, Kobo, etc – from May 24th, again in e-format.
(I’m afraid the printed version will not be available for a few months yet. I’m sorry to disappoint those people without an e-reader. If you don’t want to wait that long, though, it’s possible to buy the novel in pdf format, and read it on your computer. I’ve done this successfully in the past with authors I really love, before my very kind husband bought me an e-reader for my birthday.)
I’m excited to tell you that The Silk Romance is also part of a bundle of romance novels (in e-format) which MuseItUp have very kindly donated to best-selling US author Brenda Novak’s Annual Auction for the Cure of Diabetes. The auction starts on May 1st and runs until May 31st. You can put in a bid for the bundle here. There’s a fantastic range of items up for grabs, from autographed novels to editorial critiques for unpublished authors, and I’m really excited to be part of it. Prices are starting from $3, and it’s all in a good cause, so make sure you take a look! I’ll remind you again in May (not that I’m a nag-bag :) )
Anyone who follows this blog, or my Facebook page or @helenafairfax, will know The Silk Romance was accepted for publication at the end of October. You might be wondering why it takes until May to get published, even just in e-format. Well, the road to publication is a long one. It’s important that nothing is rushed, and that the finished novel is absolutely the best it can be. My novel initially had to go through the rounds of several editors on the Muse team, to make sure there was a consensus of agreement that it was a novel they would like to publish. Then The Silk Romance was passed to my content editor, Marni McNiff.
It’s the content editor’s job to read through the novel again and check for any number of issues which can crop up with the plot, characterisation, flow and pace of the story. I’d already had my novel critiqued by a reader from the UK’s Romantic Novelists’ Association, under their New Writers’ Scheme. My reader at the RNA was an excellent critique partner and had already pointed out several areas where the story could be improved (in particular in emphasising the conflict between the hero and heroine). This meant that by the time Marni came to look at it, luckily there was little left in the way of changes she would like to suggest. Marni e-mailed me over the Christmas week (MuseItUp editors work hard!) I felt her suggestions regarding the narrative flow in a couple of areas were excellent, and I was able to make the changes without too much effort. I e-mailed them back, and Marni loved them (whew!) But still, the work is not yet done!
I’m now waiting for my line editor to come back to me with any alterations regarding the actual copy. That is, typos, spelling mistakes, formatting, etc. I’m a little nervous about this one! I like to think my spelling and grammar are OK (I have a diploma in translation from the UK’s Institute of Linguists, so have been rigorously tested in my language ability!) But my novel is being edited in the US, and at times we speak a totally different language. Strange, but true! So, I’m intrigued to know if my editor will changed my travelled to traveled and my defence to defense. As George Bernard Shaw said, we are two countries “divided by a common language”!
After my line editor and I have agreed on all changes to the text, the novel will be set up to print. I will receive a set of proofs, or galleys, which will show exactly how the text is going to look. MuseItUp Publishing pride themselves on having a polished product. If you do read e-books, you’ll notice there are quite often problems with formatting. It’s at this stage that all these problems should be ironed out, and the galleys are my final chance to make sure everything is absolutely correct.
So, that’s the path to the publication of The Silk Romance. I’m also waiting for my cover art work, but I’m so excited about the artwork I’m planning to make it a whole new post. As usual, if you have any questions about my book, or about the publishing process, please leave a comment below. I’d love to hear from you!