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7 Mistakes Beginner Writers Make When Formatting A Manuscript

by | Dec 22, 2020 | The Writer's Tool Box, Videos For Writers

So you’re ready to write your first book, but you’re unsure of whether you’re formatting correctly. Well in this video I’m going to share with you 7 mistakes beginner writers make while formatting their manuscript.

These are common mistakes new writers make when it comes to formatting their manuscripts in software such as Google Docs or Microsoft Word.

Video Transcript for 7 Mistakes First-Time Writers Make When Formatting A Manuscript

Below are mistakes that I’ve commonly seen while reviewing manuscripts for my clients. Learn what not to do with your manuscript and how to correct them!

#1 Using the wrong font. Times New Roman is the most common font used in manuscripts.

#2 Extra space between paragraphs.  Don’t include any extra lines between paragraphs.

#3 Long paragraphs. Where possible, make your paragraphs shorter. It allows the reader to retain information easier.

mistakes beginner writers make

#4 Long chapters. Much like long paragraphs, long chapters can slow the momentum of your story! Keep the pace engaging and be mindful of how long your chapters are! 

#5 Two spaces after a period. Use one space instead.

#6 Not using page breaks. Insert a page break to begin a new chapter, instead of using the enter key.

#7 Not including page numbers. Include page numbers in the header of your manuscript.

Use these guidelines when formatting your manuscript: 

– 1″ margins  
– 12 pt font 
– Times New Roman font 
– Double spaced 
– Title page (includes physical & email address, title, and word count) 
– Header (includes name and title of manuscript on the left and page number on the right) 

And if you want to be sure that you’ve formatted your manuscript correctly, check out my previous blog post where I share how to write a book in Google Docs

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