My Publishing Journey: Writing, Platform Building and Editing

Last updated 8th November 2018

I’m embarking into the unknown world of self-publishing my first book, In The End, following the lives of Logan and his group of friends as civilisation falls apart around them. Here I document my honest journey, describing what I find as I research and try my hand, steering this way and that with my WordPress friend’s for guidance. I’ll repost each time I have any major update or when I learn something new, useful or uncover important information in the hope that those who follow me in their own journey can learn from my experiences.

This post is where I’m archiving Steps 1 to 3 of the process (Writing, Author Platform Building & Editing) so I can concentrate my weekly blog on the next steps of Publishing and Marketing the book. If anything comes to light in these steps I’ll continue to update this page but not re-publish as a new post.

If you’re already following along then you’ll see the updates in blue, unless you’re reading this through the WordPress reader.

Publication Date – 30th November 2018

Step One

Write the book


Step Two

Build a following. Build a community.IMG_3486

  • Get followers:  That’s WordPress, Twitter and Facebook followers to build excitement about the book’s release.
  • Commission a cover: DONE

Step Three


Originally under my own rules of how I wanted this work to develop, I didn’t want to have any development editing of the work. I planned to just to read and re-read, taking in pointers from my beta readers. However because of these posts and some great advice from commenters who’ve been there, successfully and otherwise, through this movie, I decided to get the manuscript professionally evaluated. It costs a descent amount of money, but I’m invested in this project and I’ll only regret it if I missed some silly mistakes, or a major plot hole which I could have easily fixed. I know those who paid good money would let me and my potential buyers know and it would be too late.

It’s back and the verdict came five pages strong and I’m very happy with the conclusion. It’s clear there’s work to be done, I’ve pulled out thirty five points which either need clarifying or need me to make a decision, one of which is to stick with a literary fiction feel or fill out the emotions of the protagonist more to give a closer connection to the reader.

The great news is with the edits, including tweaking characterisations, filling a few small plot holes, clarifying some descriptions, the overall conclusion I get it that the manuscript has worth. With a strong plot (original, well paced, logical, well developed and full of danger and troubles, to use the exact words) and a narrative style which has great artistry and variation. I’ve got a good few weeks of work making these changes, but I’m happy to say this is one of the highs of this whole process and I’m walking on air this morning!

A big thank you to all those comments who helped me to choose this route!

As I power through the edit process I’m gaining more and more confidence in the work, but for a final polish it will be off for a line by line copy edit before it goes anywhere near the bookshelves.

It’s worth noting that after using their services for the manuscript review, I subsequently joined A Writer’s Path and for $1 a month they provide access to a wealth of free and discounted services for writers. I truly still cannot fathom the amount of services these guys provide access to for this tiny subscription (and no I’m not on commission!).

Whilst on holiday I finished the final read through, catching any obvious issues I’ve added in through my latest revisions following a professional manuscript assessment and now it’s gone off to a copy editor to deal with spelling, grammar, sentence structure, plus much more. After so many revisions and read throughs I’d love to think it would clean and ready, the best it could be, but I know my own capability and the changes will be numerous. So with a completion date of 1 to 3 months for the edit, we’re looking at a publication date of a month later than that, so we may be looking at a December release date.

The edit is back and I’m so pleased with the results!

The Blurb!


What if you woke to find the electricity off, the internet down and the streets deserted? What if you were forced to run for your life, no longer top of the food chain? What if the government had no interest in keeping you alive? Those around every corner were intent on hunting you down, but you’d found a reason to struggle on, a new meaning to this life?

Meet Logan. That’s me. The first to believe the world had changed forever. The first to urge our friends to run. The first to kill, but not the first victim. I was the first to see for myself as nature twisted before my eyes. With death surrounding, getting ever closer, they looked to me for answers.

Can Logan overcome his fears and find what it takes to get them all to safety, or will it be the end for humanity?

In The End is the debut novel from GJ Stevens, a compelling apocalyptic thriller that will leave you breathless, immersing you in their fight for survival.


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