When is your manuscript ready for submitting to a literary agent. The truth is, never. But, as I have discovered the hard way, it has to be 99% ready first. This involved some key steps, including:
- Read your manuscript out loud, or have it read aloud loud to you. Use the text-to-speech function in MSWord (Review–>Read Aloud). When you hear your book read to you, you get a different perspective and flaws show up immediately.
- Work on your proofreading project early in the morning or when your brain and your eyes are the freshest. I like working through a chapter at a time.
- When you are happy with the final draft, have a few of your trusted readers review it and give honest feedback. This might include a writers’ circle, book club, etc.
- Complete a separate, second pass of proofreading of your manuscript once you have done a thorough editing. Use a professional editor to review your book. If this is too expensive, ask them to review your synopsis, first few chapters, and your query letter. Check out this video: