Yesterday I spent the afternoon with about a dozen other avid writers learning about editing a manuscript. Mr Kevin O’Brien, a renowned professional editor, ran a workshop at the S.A Writers Centre for those who write non fiction.
It was an excellent workshop and I learned a lot about how to prepare a manuscript for printing. Now I just have to put all that I learned into practice on my own manuscript. But this editing and refining of the manuscript is much more work than just correcting spelling and grammar mistakes. It is looking at how the whole story flows, capturing the imagination of the reader to keep them interested, and rechecking dates and information for accuracy. It also entails ensuring that all chapters are of similar length, all headings and subheadings are set out the same, photos are captioned, and all quotes are acknowledged. Does the story need a prologue or a post script, an index or a bibliography? I had intended to include all of the stories that have been sent to me, even though I have quoted from and used the information from your stories in the main story. I still intend to do that but I will have to get written permission from each person, so as not to infringe your copyright.
I’m really hoping to have this book ready for delivery by the end of the year, so I’d better get stuck into the work that needs to be done.
I still have to go to Port Pirie and check out the Catholic church archives for proof of a couple of points about the orphanage when it was first bought by the church. I’m hoping to do that during the coming July school holidays.
I have written to three or four other people that I thought lived at the orphanage but to date I haven’t heard anything back from them.
Hope you are all keeping warm in this cold wet winter we are enjoying.