Proof of what, exactly?
It’s hard to describe my emotions when the FedEx man shows up with …. Page proofs! This is the manuscript with its hair done and its makeup on, all the copyedits included and the type set as it will appear in the book. It’s the author’s last chance for proofreading, very minor edits, and any afterthoughts before the critter is printed.
What I feel is a kind of mix of “cool!” and “ugh, you again” with a bit of “egad, what have they done this time?” The biggest challenge is reading through the thing and paying attention to what’s printed on the page. After editing the book so many times, I’m not sure my brain isn’t supplying what it thinks it should see rather than what’s really there. I try and give it to someone who hasn’t seen it before to double check my work.
On the up side, I had a moment of, “hey, this is darned good stuff!” as I ploughed through the pages. In book form, the pacing is more obvious. I’m witty! I’m action-filled! I have great romance scenes! I have good monsters!
Unfortunately, I also have a fair number of typos. Yep, there’re still a few loose ends sticking out, but not for long.