I know you’re in a hurry. We’re all excited about getting the next release published. We all want it to be perfect, and we want it to happen NOW. But there’s an order that really needs to be followed in order for things to run smoothly. Do you really want to have to have your formatter go back over and reformat because your editor had to work on an already formatted document? Do you want to have to push your release date back because you didn’t have your needed services scheduled in advance, and now your editor, or formatter, or cover artist is completely booked for the next two months, or your beta readers don’t have time to read at the last minute?
It’s frustrating. I know. I get it. But, please, for the sanity of everyone involved, and for the sake of your book’s success, have just a little patience and PLAN. Those you hire to help make your book a success will thank you for it, and your experience with publishing a book will be so much more pleasant.

Write.     Read.     Make changes.     Beta readers.     Do you have your cover yet? Now is a good time to get that started.     Make more changes.     Read.     Send to editor.     Read and accept or reject changes.     Read again.     How is that cover coming along?     Send to the proofreader.     Accept or reject changes.     Read again.     You need to have your cover now, no exceptions.     Send to formatter.     Check every line on every page for style consistency.     Contact promotion companies or begin promoting yourself.     Schedule a date for publication.     Promote.     Read your work again.     Promote.     Release.

Again, please, plan your book needs before scheduling any services. Your book needs to be edited, proofread, and formatted to your full satisfaction before you schedule a publishing date. There’s nothing more frustrating than planning a release on X day, only to find out that your editor or formatter can’t fit you in before then. There’s nothing more frustrating for an editor, formatter, or cover artist to find out their client waited until the last minute, and since they’re already booked, the client must either reschedule their release or rush to find others to do the work.

Editing comes before formatting. Every book can benefit from improvements. Read your own manuscript and perfect as you go, more than once, before you send it for editing. Look over those edits and read it fully again. 

No two editors have the same style. No two cover artists will design the same cover, even with the same chosen elements, and it’s never acceptable to let one artist adjust another artist’s cover. When you use more than one professional for any specific service on a series of books, the differences are glaringly obvious. It’s all about planning to make sure the people you want to help you will be available.