Manuscript Development
2022-2023

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The  CLI manuscript development process is a one or two-semester long goal focused on turning your book into a manuscript. By setting weekly page goals, reading and writing every day, and checking in with peers on your progress, this process will ensure your manuscript is completed by Fall or Spring book production. 

Watch the video below to get started. 

8 Steps to Finishing Your Book

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1. CLARIFY THE VISION.

 

What vision do you have for the physical book? What will its size, shape, color, page count, and font be? Visit a bookstore and look at existing books for ideas. 

2. CREATE THE MANUSCRIPT DOCUMENT.

Create a Word or Google doc and import every poem, story, or essay you have. This includes ideas, outlines, unedited, and, of course, edited work. 

3. ENROLL IN A WRITING WORKSHOP.

Find a creative writing class with a workshop component. Here, you will find prompts, people to read and critique your work, and a community of poets who will keep you accountable to your craft. 

4. READ AND WRITE EVERY DAY. 

Find a comfortable place to read and write on a daily basis. Write at the same time every day. This trains your body and mind to produce work consistently. Read books in the same genre as the one you are writing. 

5. KNOW YOUR PAGE COUNT. 

 

Count your current pages and then subtract that number from your book's total page count. Divide that number by the number of weeks you have to complete your maniuscript. This is your weekly goal. Add this to your manuscript and commit to it. 

6. USE CLI'S SUCCESS SERVICES.  

Accountability Partners: Find an accountability partner in your class and set a time to check in with that person daily. Set an alarm so you don't forget.

Writer's Block (of time): Atttend this virtual writing session every morning and write with your peers in silence. 

7. ENTER BOOK PRODUCTION.  

 

Once you have finished your book, learn the book production steps and start working with professionsal s to bring your book to life. Gather samples and consider making mock-ps to share with your book designer.

8. PRINT YOUR BOOK & PREPARE TO PROMOTE.  

Exit book production with proofs of your book. Begins constructing a marketing and outreach plan to release your book. 

Have questions?

Email our Book Production Team at bookproduction@communitylit.org.