Formatting Manuscripts

When submitting a manuscript to an editor, it really helps if there’s a standard to how the manuscript has been formatted. Too many writers submit their manuscript in odd fonts, colours, margins and more. That means the editor has to change these even before beginning the editing process. That’s needless extra work we’re burdening the editor with and – it costs us writers money because we’re paying them to fix that. Want to save money?

Do the following:

  • 2.54cm (1 inch) margin on all sides
  • Single spaced if digitally submitted; double spaced if using a printed submission (we need space to write comments)
  • Use Format Paragraph to indent paragraphs the default 1.27cm (DO NOT use TAB or spaces to indent)
  • Title page with manuscript title and author name
  • Paginate from the first page of text, not the title page
  • New chapters on new pages, using PAGE BREAK
  • First paragraph of a chapter is not indented
  • Only 2 lines between chapter heading and first paragraph
  • 12 point font; Times New Roman or Arial; black (automatic)
  • Microsoft Word for digital submissions (Because everyone has it and so we can use Track Changes and Insert Comment.)
  • All chapters and other matieral in a single document

DO NOT:

  • Double space between sentences
  • Use carriage return (SHIFT + RETURN) after a paragraph, only RETURN
  • Leave a blank line between paragraphs
  • use Format Paragraph to put space before or after paragraph

Optional:

  • Put title and author name in the Header or Footer (dimmed gray)

 

Remember: Always check with the editor/agent/publisher beforehand. They may have their own specific guidelines. (And some are very picky.)

For those of you interested in using my editing services, please use the above list.

 

Need Help Formatting?

Have you already written up a document with formatting you no longer want? Don’t want to go thorugh an entire novel to fix each double space and tab? Try these:

Change Double Spaces after sentences to Single Spaces (in Microsoft Word)

  • Use FIND AND REPLACE
  • In the FIND field, type 2 spaces with the space bar (these will then become highlighted in the document)
  • Leave the replace field blank
  • Click REPLACE ALL

Remove TABs (in Microsoft Word)

  • Use FIND AND REPLACE
  • In the FIND field, use the drop down menu to select TABs (these will then become highlighted in the document)
  • Leave the replace field blank
  • Click REPLACE ALL

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Book Review: Seventh Grave and No Body (Charley Davidson #7)

Book Review

Seventh Grave and No Body (Charley Davidson #7)

Darynda Jones

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ (5 Stars – I love it!)

Romance, Comedy, Supernatural, Mystery

Darynda Jones does it again. No, I don’t mean in bed. I don’t know who she’s doing in bed, if anyone, or how many times she’s doing it. I mean with her book, Seventh Grave and No Body. It’s another great Charley Davidson outting.

It’s got sex, drugs and rock and roll. Ok, maybe no drugs. And maybe not the rock and roll either. But there’s sex. Much more of it now. If you like that sort of thing. And yes, of course you do. But there’s also more coffee, sadly, it’s decaf, and we feel Charlotte’s pain. The sacrifices we make for motherhood. Well, not me. I’m a dude. Ha! Suck on that, girls. I can drink all the coffee I want while you’re carrying the mini me. Maybe even Irish it up a little.

No, I dislike whisky. Maybe I’ll caribbean it up. With rum. Yeah, better. It’s good to be me.

Not really sure what the title’s all about. There’s bodies galore. Oh, maybe it was about the…yeah. Exactly. You’ll figure it out. And is it just me or are the book covers totally cute? I love skulls. Especially mine. I’d hate to lose it. I think I’m also going to get mine covered in diamonds when I die. Then women will hoard it and fight over it. Probably a lot more than they fight over me now. Damn shallow, diamond-wanting women.

So, in book seven, Charley is still kicking ass. There’s a bun in the oven now, and I mean that metaphorically, because Charley can’t actually cook. The hounds of hell arrive and make a bloody splash. The series feels like it’s becoming a lot mroe about the supernatural now and less about the detecting side of things. But there’s still some good old-fashioned detecting going on. Totally didn’t see the main villain coming in this one. Except in retrospect, then you’re like, wow, I should have totally seen that coming. Although, not really, because I don’t know if all the clues were really there until the end. So I refuse to feel stupid, just this once.

Why do I keep reading these novels? The humour. It’s all about the sassy, wise-cracking, face-palming, dead-panning, ‘glorious’ sense of humour that fills each and every paragraph. I have no idea how she does it. It must have taken so much effort and imagination and smart-assness to do this for seven straight novels. And there are still five more to come!

So…big question. Is Charley gonna die and be replaced by her daughter in the series? I could totally see that. But Reyes will die first. That’ll set it up. Charley will be all fire and revengy at the loss of her true love and then she’ll die to, probably saving her daughter so her daughter can save the world. Hmm. Is Darynda that cold? Would she do that to her readers? Would she break that many hearts? You have to admit, fans would go crazy. And it would be a chance to reboot the series. Am I prophisizing? Has it already been done in the five books to come? Am I giving Darynda horrible ideas that are going to make people hate me in the future? I hope not. Unles they punish me by buying lots and lots of copies of my books and trying to drown me in movie deals. That would just be the worst, right?

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Book Review: Fifth Grave Past the Light (Charley Davidson #5)

Book Review

Fifth Grave Past the Light (Charley Davidson #5)

Darynda Jones

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ (5 Stars)

Mystery, Romance, Comedy, Supernatural

This is such a wickedly funny series. And each book just keeps getting better than the last. Better mystery, better suspense, better coffee. Ok, the coffee might not have originally come with the book. That might have soaked in when someone knocked over their cup at Starbucks. But hey, if a book’s gonna be scented, it’s hard to go wrong with aromatic notes of java beans and hazelnut.

I think that one of the things that makes these books so popular is how much personality the characters have. Sure, they can be one, may two or two and a half dimensional, at most, that personality is out there to be seen and felt and that’s why people can so readily identify with a character, and/or fall in love with them. Obviously, Charley Davidson is brimming over with personality the way a cup at the bottom of the ocean is overflowing with water, but so too is Cookie vividly portrayed. Uncle Bob and Garret are nice foils to Charlotte’s wit, Angel is great, and Reyes, well, I still hate Reyes. I don’t get him at all. But I have a penis. I’m not sure if that has anything to do with it, maybe it doesn’t, but he still hasn’t grown on me. I guess I’m more partial to knights in shining armour as opposed to bad boys. But some people out there would rather date Joker than Batman.

There are multiple laugh-out-loud moments in this book. People are starting to look at me funny when I read in public. But I don’t care. Worth it. The Ozzy voice on the GPS nav system was awesome. I don’t know why anyone would want any other voice after reading that.

It wasn’t until partway through that I realized just how many different plots and subplots are all being juggled at the same time here. Impressive. Darynda Jone’s flow chart must look like a plate of spaghetti. And I mean her plot flow; that statement had nothing to do with her period, which I hope is far less complicated.

Can’t wait until the next book. Oh! I don’t have to. I have it sitting right here. Along with numbers 7, 8 and 9. (grin)

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Book Review: First Grave on the Right (Charley Davidson #1)

Book Review

First Grave on the Right (Charley Davidson #1)

Darynda Jones

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ (4 Stars)

Romance, Mystery, Supernatural, Comedy

A little mystery, a little bit of the supernatural, a few dollops of action, some romance and hot sex, and a whole lot of wise-ass, dry humour that will crack you up. Darynda Jones’ Charley Davidson series begins with a bang. And not just the one between Charlotte and Reyes.

I actually read books 2 and 3 before this one. That turned out to be ok because it was a neat experience to go back in time and see how the story started. And the first book didn’t disappoint. Maybe it’s not ‘quite’ as polished as later novels, but that’s part of the charm. Still pretty darned good though.

You wouldn’t think there’d be much in the love/lust arena, as the guy she likes is in a coma and all, but through the magic of being able to leave one’s body and all the hot dream sex, they still manage to get all hot and bothered.

Charlotte’s as sassy, laid back and goofy as they come. Such a great sense of ridiculous humour. I love it. It’s so me. With a little Homer Simpson. If Homer was a girl with amazing tits. Not that I’m a girl with amazing tits, but a 6 month trip to Thailand could change all that. Something to think about if I ever want to seriously pursue life as a stripper. I love strippers.

Any fan of modern, supernatural, female protagonists will love this series. Hell, even if you’re not so into the supernatural thing, it’s not like this is Vampire Diaries or something. The dead people in the book are just like everyone else. Just with a few more holes in them. Think Sixth Sense, but instead of a little kid, the lead actress is a coffee-swilling crazy person who makes you laugh every other paragraph.

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Book Review: The Burning Page (Invisible Library #3)

Book Review

The Burning Page (Invisible Library #3)

Genevieve Cogman

⭐️⭐️⭐️⭐️ (4 Stars)

Fantasy, Adventure

The Burning Page is the third book in the Invisible Library series by Genevieve Cogman. The story takes place in a fantasy world, or rather, a very large number of them, parallel earths, all connected to the Library at the center. Irene and other Librarians scour the universes for unique books and bring them back to the Library to add them to the greatest book collection ever.

In book three, Irene is helped by Kia, a dragon who can change to human form, and Vale, the world’s greatest detective and rather like Holmes in many ways. Together they hunt for a way to stop Alberich, a madman intent on destroying the library and finding his long lost son. Murderous booby traps, traitors, werewolves in London, authoritarian Russians, venemous spiders and more stand in their way.

It is an imaginative world centered on a great idea: the library. It’s a world for book fans and fantasy fans and library fans. The story is full of action and adventure, a thought-provoking line or two, and a lot of fun as we become immersed in this fantasy world and learn more and more about it. It’s creative and it’s fun!

[amazon template=iframe image&asin=1101988681]

 

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