Expert Round-Up Topic: Nonfiction publishing professionals: What do people misunderstand or not know about what you actually do in your job?
Because of the rise in desktop publishing over the past few decades, many people mistakenly think that anyone with a computer can edit and publish. They feel that SpellCheck will do their editing, and of course, Amazon can do their publishing. This over-simplification of complex book editing and publishing has led to a tsunami of badly written, badly edited, and badly
A good editor does more than correct spelling and punctuation. They work with the author to bring out the best in the manuscript. A traditional nonfiction publisher, on the other hand, looks for manuscripts that meet a need in the marketplace, are well-written and commercially viable. Because of this team, only the best of books will get published and will always meet industry standards.
We have published over 1,000 nonfiction books, based in Australia working with authors in the U.S., Canada, New Zealand, and Australia. Things people misunderstand of what we do:
– Most are first-time authors and they underestimate how much detail is in the process of publishing their book.
– Often authors underestimate, thinking they can do it on their own to save money but bring out substandard poorly published nonfiction projects. When they realise these changes, they come to us to fix their mistakes. They end up wasting time and money.
– People underestimate the time it takes to properly finish a high-quality book—which is usually 3–4 months; however, they think it can be done in a few weeks.
– Once the book comes out, authors underestimate the effort it takes to get the book promoted and known if they really want to share their story or expertise with the world.
– The amount of time a project manager devotes to pulling together an amazing nonfiction book.
– The value in the advice from those who have done it before versus an author trying to dig out and learn the information alone online.
– The investment that you need to make to self-publish a nonfiction book.
In the past, every time I told people I run a blog they quickly dismissed it as a hobby, or something I did just for fun, waiting eagerly for me to tell them what I really do for a living. And I don’t blame them. The term blog is commonly associated with online personal journals. Nowadays I go with the online magazine angle, which is pretty much the same, but probably easier to understand in terms of generating revenue.
You see, as newspapers or physical magazines sell editorial space to companies for them to place ads, I do the same thing on my website!
RICARDO LUIS VON GROLL
Blogging is just a part of a publishing professional’s job. What people most misunderstand about publishing professionals is that they are only bloggers. I mean, people think that we produce, develop, and publish content, and that’s all. They need to learn how much it takes to research relevant and effective keywords, how we use data to decide on a content headline, or how the color we use when publishing something can influence readers. In other words, people need to learn how much study, research, and effort it takes to get anything published, at least in the HR tech field.
From the viewpoint of a small indie publisher, something people don’t typically know or understand is how much time and energy goes into all the back-end preparation for creating/publishing/launching a quality book…from the coordination of project schedules between all the professionals involved (copy editors, proofreaders, cover designers, layout, and
formatters, etc.) to things like the research that goes into category placement, keywords, and other metadata.
My best advice for new authors is: Take the time you anticipate it will take for the publication/launch process, then multiply it by (at least) three to have a more realistic estimate. Maximize this time by nurturing the growth and engagement of your author platform. You want your audience to be excited and primed to buy your book.
I provide translation services for international business to law firms, legal departments, and HR departments. It is a common misconception that translators only translate words, and that anyone who can speak two languages can do it.
Translating involves translating words, clearly. More importantly, we translate content. This is especially true for legal texts. Translating highly complex contracts, court documents, and laws requires in-depth knowledge of both legal systems and linguistic skills.
— First, the translator must understand the meaning of the original text.
— Second, they must be able to convey the legal context into the target language. As in the case of translations from French to English in Canada, that becomes even more challenging when we have two legal systems to deal with. Quebec’s legal system differs from the rest of Canada’s. When a translation is made without understanding the differences between the two systems, it will be inaccurate and misleading.
— Adapting the words and sentence structure to a specific locale adds a third layer. A translation into Standard German, for example, would not be appropriate for the Swiss market. Within a language, sentence structure, grammar, and expressions can vary, and these subtleties are crucial if one wants to come across respectful of their anticipated place of business/be taken seriously.
In summary, what people don’t understand about the translator job is that it’s just as important to be a subject-matter expert as it is to have linguistic skills.
If you want to succeed internationally, you must hire someone who understands content, language, and culture, something Google Translate can’t provide.
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