Publishing Behind the Scenes: Pass Pages

I can’t believe it’s already February! Your Life Has Been Delayed has been out five months as of yesterday, and we’re a little more than seven months out from My Second Impression of You. I hope you caught the cover reveal for My Second Impression of You a couple of weeks ago. I’m so in love with how it captures both my characters and Maggie’s past and present.

For the past few months, I’ve been giving a behind-the-scenes glimpse at the publishing process. So far I’ve covered developmental edits, line edits, and copyedits. For each of these steps in the process, I was able to include examples from both of my books. However, for today’s topic–pass pages–I can only share my experience with Your Life Has Been Delayed as we haven’t yet reached that part of the process for My Second Impression of You

As I explained last month, the final product of copyedits is a Word document that includes typesetting notations. This version is then sent to the design team for layout as well as to an outside proofreader for another final check. So when the pass pages arrive, they are an author’s first glimpse at how the inside of the book will look. That first time I saw the title page with the little plane and my name… 😍😍😍

One interesting thing I didn’t realize until I was on the inside of the process is that the pass pages are the version of the book printed for Advance Reader Copies. That’s why ARCs have all those warnings on them about not being final–they haven’t gone through the last round of proofreading yet. So if you get the opportunity to read an ARC and find errors, that’s not too surprising. It’s also why publishers don’t want you to quote ARCs or redistribute them. But moving on…

The pass pages arrive with editing marks from the proofreader, production editor, and book editor. At this stage, they’re mainly minor and/or picky notes. For Your Life Has Been Delayed, there were a few notes about commas, and I was determined to master the rules according the publisher’s style. However, after much back and forth, I finally gave up and have decided that when the pass pages arrive for My Second Impression of You, I’m just going to accept any comma changes without question 😊. The main non-minor thing was that I still had some timeline issues in the pass pages. I thought we’d cleared them all up during copyedits, but apparently not 🤷‍♀️. I also used the pass pages as an opportunity for one more read-through of the book. I noticed a few minor things that I marked.

After I submitted my comments on the pass pages, my editor and the production editor went through and resolved everything. Once it was all approved, the book was ready for the printer!

You know after all of those rounds of edits, we still missed a few things? I haven’t read the book again since it was released, but a couple of friends have pointed errors out. I guess we can fix them before the paperback comes out 😀.

I hope you’ve found this behind-the-scenes publishing series interesting. If you have any other questions about the publishing process, feel free to ask!

As usual, I’ll just remind you that my latest newsletter is also out today. In addition to this feature and the cover reveal, it also includes a Valentine’s Day recipe and reading recommendations, as well as a roundup of recent interviews and highlights.

Responses to “Publishing Behind the Scenes: Pass Pages”

    • Michelle I. Mason

      I didn’t either until I was in the middle of the process. Happy to share what I’ve learned!


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