I never realised how much work went into producing a book. Not when I was a reader, not when I first started writing The Choice and not even when I won the Good Housekeeping Novel Competition and signed my book deal with Orion.
I was completely clueless about the whole process and I think in a lot of ways that was a good thing. It might have scared me off from ever pursuing my publishing dreams.
Today I'm glad I wasn't put off, because my digital proof for The Choice arrived. This is the pdf version of my book, laid out as it will be printed.
The story has been through structural edits, line edits, copy edits and this is the final step. The last stage in transforming The Choice into a book.
When I opened the document and saw the title page I was overwhelmed. It's my name, my title and my publisher, all on one page. A page that represents seven years of hard work and a dream fulfilled.
Turning the page, I found I was even more emotional seeing the copyright page. I've seen this page in every book I've ever read and now to read my own version and see my name on it was incredible. There may have been a few tears...
I'm now going through each page, checking for the famous SPAG (Spelling, Punctuation And Grammar) that we were taught in school. This is not my favourite thing: it wasn't at school, it's not now. I'd much rather be writing something new... but it's necessary. Fortunately, there's a professional proof reader going through it as well, so between us we'll hopefully pick up on any small errors. Fingers crossed.
I can't wait for you to see the finished book. The layout is beautiful, the font is lovely and easy to read and I adore the fact that the chapter headings are the same font as the cover text. I hope you'll love it as much as I do.
The 26th December can't come soon enough!
You can pre-order your copy of The Choice as a paperback or ebook from all good booksellers. Amazon UK, Waterstones and Book Depository
Claire Wade is the winner of the Good Housekeeping Novel Competition and author of The Choice. She was bed bound for six years with severe ME, trapped in a body that wouldn't do what she wanted. She now writes about women who want to break free from the constraints of their lives, a subject she's deeply familiar with.