Yesterday I turned over my book Hiking North Carolina’s Blue Ridge Heritage to my publisher Milestone Press. Officially, they’re Milestone Press but really they’re Mary Ellen Hammond and Jim Parham. It’s a small operation with lots of skill and personal attention. But they don’t try to do it all; they hire expertise.
Turning over a guidebook to your publisher is not like turning over a novel. Besides the actual manuscript, i.e. the text, there are pictures, captions for the pictures and maps from my GPS. I wanted to make sure that they had all the pieces. Also, I gave them input for their marketing effort.
So I put everything on a thumb drive, loaded everything on my laptop as well and drove two hours to their office in Almond, west of Bryson City. Handing over the manuscript was a cathartic experience.
But it’s not done. That’s why they call it a draft. After they edit, they’re going to have lots of questions. No matter how much I checked and rechecked, Mary Ellen and Jim will find inconsistencies and mistakes. I may have to rehike one or more hikes. That’s OK. That’s the best part.