Hali‘a Aloha Requirements & Timeline

Your Commitment to the Program

One of the aims of the Hali‘a Aloha program is to see your book to completion, rather than allowing your incomplete manuscript to languish in a drawer or on your hard drive. The success of the program and your book depends on your ability to meet the agreed-upon deadlines. Space in each cohort is limited, and the expectation of the program is that each participant will complete the course and add their book to the series. Hali‘a Aloha participants should view the program as a writing course where published copies of their book are the equivalent of passing a final exam, and not as a book production and publishing service. (Please see Legacy Isle Publishing’s other services, if that’s what you’re looking for.) If for any reason you expect that you won’t be able to complete your manuscript on time, you can archive your project for up to one year and re-instate it for a fee. As we only have a limited number of spaces in each cohort, we ask that authors check their dates and commitments to ensure that they can meet the obligations of the program before agreeing to join. Rescheduling will depend on space availability in a future cohort.

Our detailed FAQ section covers our policies on scope of work, permissible material, deadlines, refunds and other critical information. Please be sure to read through carefully before committing to the program. Participants are required to sign a Client-Author Agreement prior to beginning the program; you may preview the agreement terms here.

Time Commitment and Workload

  • Weekly reading/prep 30-60 minutes a week, once a week
  • Weekly writing 15-30 minutes a day, five days a week

Some people work well in short, intense bursts followed by breaks while others like to do a little bit every day. If you prefer to save up the work for the weekend, you can do that, but it often works better to take small bites rather than one big one. Either way, you’ll want to finish the week with your reading and writing assignments complete.

Published print books have a page count of 104 (minimum) to 120 (maximum) pages in the series’ 5-inch by 8-inch softcover size. This corresponds roughly to a manuscript of 15,000 to 23,000 words in length. Manuscripts with more divisions (chapters, parts, etc.) will result in more pages, as the text starts fresh on a new page after these breaks. Photos will also impact your final page count and word count requirement.

If you already have a manuscript you’ve been working on… 

Check the word count and determine what adjustments need to be made. Is it too long? Too short? Come up with a plan to revise your manuscript so it adheres to our submission guidelines while successfully sharing the story you want to tell.

If you complete all five exercises each week…

If you are writing from scratch, or if you have a handful of ideas but don’t know where to begin, start by completing all five weekly writing exercises, with an average word count of 250 words per exercise (approximately two paragraphs or one page of writing, double spaced, 12-point Times New Roman). This will give you plenty of material to choose from when it comes time to put your memoir together and allows flexibility for expanding any micro memoir into a longer essay if you wish. This also lets you take a break as needed.

If you complete four exercises each week…

This is a good option for people who can commit to the entire writing portion of the program and want to use the prompts as the foundation of their memoir.

If you complete three exercises each week…

If you complete three weekly writing exercises or fewer, you risk not having enough material for your collection. Of course, some of your pieces may be longer, but this is not just about word count—it’s about identifying consistent themes and patterns in your writing and choosing the best and most relevant stories. It’s okay to vary your writing from week to week, but do your best to stay on track with your writing so you don’t have to rush in the end. Three exercises per week is a viable option for people who already have a significant portion of their memoir already completed and would like to generate new material and/or strengthen their writing skills.

Program Timeline

  • Enrollment for each cohort closes three weeks prior to the session start date. Welcome packets with program materials are mailed out two weeks before the session start. 
  • Two work-in-progress submissions must be turned in during the first three months of the session.
  • You should aim to complete your final manuscript around Week 26 of the program (about seven months after the session starts). You will need at least a few weeks for the proofing process, and Signature Clients will need extra time for their developmental edit consultations and any resulting revisions. Submitting your final draft between seven and nine months into the program is considered on track.
  • You must submit your manuscript or request to archive no later than twelve months after the cohort start. 

Month 1 to Month 4

This period is all about writing. If you’re a Signature Package client, you’ll be able to schedule your first one-on-one session with our editorial team to map out the months ahead and develop a plan for tackling your manuscript. It’s important to build momentum and establish the habit of writing regularly, especially if you haven’t worked intensely on a writing project before. 

Month 4

You’ll begin the process of looking at your existing pieces and identifying any themes that might be emerging with your writing. You’ll still be writing, but you’ll shift into gentle revision mode. 

Month 5 to Month 6

Now it’s time to actively engage the revision and organization of your work. You’ll have an idea of how you want your memoir to look and what will be included. You’ll have a good sense of your project and be ready to move toward the finish line. 

In the middle of Month 6, you’ll begin finalizing your manuscript, assembling your front and back matter, and do a final copy edit.

Month 7 to Month 8

It’s time to submit your work. Once your manuscript is submitted and accepted by our team, you’ll choose the cover for your book, along with how you’d like your title and name to appear. You’ll also approve the production proof of your manuscript.

Basic Package clients will submit their manuscripts straight to proofreading.

Signature Package clients will submit their completed manuscripts to our editorial team for a developmental edit. Within two weeks, Signature Package clients will receive an editorial letter along with comments on the manuscript and then have a consultation to go over the comments. Signature Package clients will have two weeks to revise their work before submitting their manuscripts for production.

Month 9+ 

Your book files will be sent to our printing partner. Once the file has been received on their end and put into their print queue, you will receive a final digital proof to review.

The printing process takes approximately four to six weeks, from the time the final proof is approved to books being ready to ship out. This timeframe may vary due to extenuating circumstances, such as global or regional pandemic, affecting our printers and shipping companies. We will always do our best to keep you informed of any delays.