the proof and the obscure

In Edinburgh recently, we spent a fun couple of hours in Camera Obscura, looking at the incredible, the impossible, the unbelievable, the inexplicable, and the unclear. Now, home again, I am coming towards the end of my proofreading for Dear Isobel and it feels remarkably similar.

The picture below could show one of the many stunning light effects in the museum, or it could be an accurate representation of how the words look on the page after a couple of chapters. I’ve worked out that I proofread at a speed of approximately 1 chapter every 30 minutes. After 4 or 5 chapters, the lines start to blur and I need a break.

many wiggling lines

But, on reflection, I’m happy with how things are shaping up.

The good news is that the nearer I get to the end, the clearer it becomes. The rogue commas have been caught (hopefully most of them, anyway), the misplaced words have been rearranged until the sentences become clearer, and the ‘how the heck did that get there?‘s have been obliterated.

However, unlike the exhibits in Camera Obscura, the aim of proofreading is to clarify. I am confident that the hours spent on this have been constructive and that the book is better for the time and attention. Here are some sneak previews from random locations:

Once I send off the proofs, we are only a few more short steps away from publication. We are almost ready for the cover reveal, which will coincide with pre-order links becoming active, and then – then we are on the final stretch towards release day on 15th March, and my book, my first novel, will become a real, tangible entity that I can hold in my hands. While we are keeping things obscure, here’s a little teaser:

That’s all I’ve got for you this week -I’ve got to crack on with the last couple of chapters!

Love, Jinny

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