What Happens to your story before Publication

So, ever wonder what happens to your story in-between the submitted Word document and the final output? Here is a quick overview of what I do.

  1. I copy and paste the story into plain text. This strips out all formatting, all styles, but most importantly, all of the sins of the word processor used to create it.
  2. It is Find and Replace time! Remove the Tabs, and double spaces after punctuation. Change it so ultimately it is two hard returns after a paragraph, with no hard or soft ones in-between.
  3. Quotes are straightened, single and double. Each dash and hyphen is inspected to ensure it is the correct punctuation mark.
  4. Any spacing between sections is normalized. I use either * * * or just blank space.
  5. I open up the original again, and reformat any italics in the piece. I check to make sure the paragraph breaks are correct, all the section breaks were marked.

And now I have a clean and correctly formatted version of your story in a TXT file. From here, I can convert it to DOCX or EPUB or just about anything I want without formatting worries. If there is a change to be made, I can make it in the TXT file, and it is changed everywhere.