The joy and excitement you experience when you release your book into the world can quickly be replaced with fear and anxiety. The social climate today has become a haven for “cancel-culture” and “fake news.” Any misinformation can potentially discredit you and cause your book to get boycotted and “canceled.”

To avoid falling victim to the cancel-culture mob, it’s absolutely vital for you to learn how to fact-check all of your work.

How to Fact Check

‌When it comes to fact-checking, you are completely responsible for the accuracy of your work. Even large publishing companies hold their authors responsible for the accuracy of the content in their manuscripts.

Fact-checking is an entirely different beast than editing, and you shouldn’t rely on a content editor to fact-check your work. Instead, depending on how fact-heavy your work is, you may want to hire a professional fact-checker.

If you prefer to save your money, you can do your own fact-checking. The following list contains a few fact-checking tips authors should utilize to make sure their work is accurate:

  • Fact-check the entire time you’re writing.
  • Step away from your work for a while before fact-checking it.
  • Go back, and fact-check everything upon completing the manuscript.
  • Record all interviews you conduct.
  • Keep accurate records of where you found your research.
  • Call sources to double-check their claims.
  • Utilize experts to verify the information.

Fiction Fact-Checking

‌If you thought that writing fiction means you don’t need to fact-check, you’re very mistaken. Yes, you’re allowed a lot of creative freedom when writing fiction — especially if you create a fantasy world.

However, some areas must be accurate to make sense. Examples of areas that need to be fact-checked in fiction are:

  • Location details
  • Animal/ breed details
  • Character career details
  • Plot points based on actual events
  • Date for historical periods
  • Spelling of historical figure’s names
  • Match ages to dates
  • Descriptions of technical items

If you’re creating an entirely new fantasy world, then many of the above-listed items don’t apply. However, it would be best if you still fact-checked all of your item descriptions.

Non-Fiction Fact-Checking

‌If you’re writing a non-fiction book, then you will be doing a lot of fact-checking. One mistake can discredit you as an accurate non-fiction writer. However, as a non-fiction writer, researching and fact-checking should become second nature to you.

The following are a few tips to help you fact-check your non-fiction work:

  • Stop and fact-check each section as you are writing.
  • Double-check all quotes are correctly sourced.
  • Recognize the difference between bias and facts.
  • Utilize various fact-checking sites to verify news stories.

Palmetto Publishing is Here to Help

Palmetto Publishing offers a variety of services to help make your book successful. Our editing services include copy editing, line editing, and developmental editing.

Once you’ve completed the editing process and fact-checked it, we can assist you with cover design, interior design, printing, and marketing. Contact us today to learn more about our services.