Almost Finished

Almost finished with your manuscript?
You’ve put in a lot of work! Now you can almost taste the finish line. Your manuscript is almost complete! What happens now? What questions should you be asking yourself as you near the time when you’ll be sending your manuscript to a publisher?
I’ve listed some important questions below that you’ll need to ask (and answer) as you’re completing your manuscript.
  • What’s left to accomplish before I send my manuscript to a publisher?
  • How many words do I have now? How many words do I estimate for the finished manuscript?
  • What is my estimated finish date for the manuscript?
  • When do I want my finished book on the market?
  • Have I chosen a publisher? If so, what were my reasons?
  • What do I expect my publisher to do for me and my book?¬†What must my publisher’s qualifications be?
  • Do I have a current audience?
  • What am I doing now to build my audience?
  • What is my goal for this book?
  • What are my marketing plans for this book?
  • Have I worked out a publishing budget?

If you’re stuck on any of these questions, just ask me by commenting below; I’ll be happy to help you with an answer. If you have questions that aren’t on the list, send them to me via the the comment section below – we can answer them together!

Remember, writing a great manuscript is just one part of a ¬†process that makes your book a success. You’ve come a long way, your manuscript is almost ready to share with the world! Congratulations!

Is your manuscript finished? Click here for a list of questions you’ll need to answer before sending your manuscript to a publisher!


  1. My manuscript is almost finished. Its a memoir. In “How to Write a Book Proposal” Michael Larsen says that if your manuscript is finished then you need only write an introduction and a two-page synopsis with the first few chapters. He says you don’t need to write an entire book proposal.
    Time is of the essence with my book. It has to do with one of the presidential candidates. If I say in the introduction that its “almost completed” will they immediately reject it. I don’t have an agent yet, so I have to get one of those first. Thank you for any advice.

    • Hi Autumn,
      Thanks for your comment and congratulations on your manuscript! Regarding the book proposal, Larsen is right that traditional publishers don’t need the entire book to see if they have any interest. If time is of the essence with your subject matter, unless you’re already a known entity (think Woodward and Bernstein) or have first hand provable, unpublished news bombshell (think Monica Lewinski) going the traditional book proposal route with a traditional publisher may be extremely slow and frustrating. If you do have something timely and groundbreaking and want to go traditional you’ll need to find and convince an agent, who will be the one convinces the publisher. Don’t mention “almost completed.” If a traditional publisher shows enough interest to want to see the manuscript put on a pot of coffee and work around the clock to finish it. Better yet, finish it right now and skip the caffeine.


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