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Complete DIY Self-Publishing Pt. 5: Publication

HammerComplete DIY Self-Publishing Pt. 5: Publication

This is the fifth part of a series about self-publishing a short e-book as a completely DIY project. Part 1 introduced why you should consider trying to self-publish on your own at least once. Part 2 dealt with some of the tools you will need to gather at some point to accomplish the project. Part 3 addressed the importance of formatting and using the tool of a style guide. Part 4 covers – well – the cover.

So you’ve arrived at go time with your book publication. Your book is formatted and the cover created. You’re ready to get this book into the public eye. But is there anything else you should do? Here are some checkpoints to cover before you upload your book.

Add the Tidbits

The style guide from Smashwords suggests using several pieces of information at the beginning and end of your book. First make sure to add the legal copyright notice and any necessary disclaimer are included. Do you have a proper cover page inserted? Is there a linked Contents page? Have you inserted an Author page at the end with your contact information and previous credits? All these pieces are useful elements needed in your book so verify they are in the manuscript and contain correct information.

Test the book

Save the book as an ebook format and use Adobe Digital Editions to view the finished product. When you view the book make sure the appearance is consistent. Also test your contents page and chapter headings to ensure the links are all working correctly. If you are using Scrivener you can compile the book in to a digital format. If you are using Word you can save it in PDF format.

Re-check your cover

Does your cover contain any misspellings? Is the appearance effective like you anticipate? Lastly, is the cover the correct size for your vendor(s)? As I shared in a previous post, I had to do some extra photo editing with Gimp to get the cover to the correct size.

Space Shuttle LaunchVerify the manuscript is ready

The manuscript should be saved as a Word document for uploading to your chosen vendor(s). But you created a digital version to test, why upload the Word version? When you upload a digital version it is basically “as is” so Kindle and Smashwords won’t determine if you have problems. Also, save two versions in Word – one for each vendor with different legal notice that you are publishing this through a specific vendor.

Create your accounts

Each vendor will require that you create an account. As part of the process you will be required to provide information for legal and tax purposes. Make sure you create these accounts so you’ve got your details and decisions completed before uploading to make the act of publication easier. As part of your process when you publish, the book will be assigned an AIN (Kindle) or ISBN (Smashwords) as identifiers for your book. Read the requirements from each vendor so you know what to expect.

Conclusion

Once you’ve published the book you can sit back and wait for the vendor(s) to verify the content has no mistakes that need correction. If there are mistakes or changes that are required you must address them before the book will be available to the public. If you have no issues you’ve launched the book. Now comes the hard part – selling it. But now you have the experience that goes with self-publishing in all aspects so you know what to expect from the process on a larger project.

Available at Amazon, Smashwords and All Major E-Book Vendors!

Available at Amazon, Smashwords and All Major E-Book Vendors!

Do you have a short project you’d like to self-publish? If you’ve published previously what experiences can you share? Please share your thoughts and ideas in the comments section. I’d also love to connect with you over social media so check my contact page for that information. See the News page for announcements and remember to sign-up to receive news and posts by email. I’ve added a new sign-up tab on my FaceBook page to simplify the process. New followers can download The Black Bag via free coupon today! Also, the cover of my book, The Bow of Destiny, was revealed recently so take a look.

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Clip art licensed from Microsoft Office.

Deep POV Pt. 7: Editing Tips

This is an ongoing series about using the writing technique – deep point of view. The original posts began over last summer after I attended a webinar on the subject. Previous are listed at the end of this post.

Editing for Deep POV

Editing for Deep POV

I’ve recently been revising my upcoming novel in preparation for sending the manuscript to my editor. As part of the process of developing deeper POV I want to revise the following:

1. Remove most, if not all, dialog tags so they are associated contextually with the speaking character.

2. Remove most, if not all, thinking tags and replace them with internalization or emotional cues.

3. Remove all internal dialog and replace with internalization.

4. Find as many prepositional “tellers” as possible and remove them. I supplied some examples of what these look like in a previous post listed below.

I thought that I would need to slog through each chapter or scene to find everything that needs to be done but this process proved to be arduous rather than running searches.

1. First tip: run searches to start finding all the problems quickly. The point is to move along and read in depth at a later stage. I delayed too long in following this simple editing hack and letting my editor find deeper issues to fix.

2. I started by running a search for dialog tags. I looked for the word “said” and determined whether it needed to be removed. I also searched for ‘ ,” ‘ in order to find all other dialog tags. By finding these I could edit these out as needed.

3. While I looked at dialog tags I also visually scanned nearby to identify other needed changes with thinking tags to insert internalization and places to insert emotional cues (both internal and external for the POV character, external for other characters). I also looked for other types of distance like viewing words that could be removed in order to show action around the character. However, further searches for thinking words can be found and edited.

4. I originally used some internal dialog so I had to correct for tense. I did searches for the words “I”, “me”, “my” and “we” to make sure tense was corrected.

Clip Art Image Copyright by Microsoft. Clip Art

Clip Art Image Copyright by Microsoft. Clip Art

5. As part of going deeper with POV and inserting emotional cues I looked for “teller” prepositions that describe, or tell, emotional state. These I’m able to find and replaced with emotional cues and internalization.

6. There remain some issues with sentences that have incorrect order or that lack linear progress. This is where scanning around my target searches helps since I can spot these issues and correct them. However, searching for the words “when”, “as” and “while” helps find these problems also if they still exist.

This helped me get to the various issues I wanted to resolve in a quicker fashion than otherwise. I expect the deeper round edits from the editor to find more issues but I’m further along than otherwise. The main point is that there are searches to use that get at many of the issues rather quickly. However, you must know what it is you are looking for to locate them without bogging down too much. Some of these are well-known shortcuts among writers and editors, I’ve just listed some that help me get to deep POV.

Here are previous posts based on deep POV that may help:

3 Tips for Editing to Deep POV PT 1

Deep POV Tips Part 2

Deep POV Tips Part 3

Deep POV Tips Part 4: Of Sneaks and Shallow POV

Deep POV Tips Pt. 5: Eliminate Narrative Distance

Deep POV Pt. 6: Editing for Emotion

And of course here are more resources for deep POV and showing emotion rather than telling:

Rivet Your Readers with Deep Point of View

The Emotion Thesaurus

The Bow of DestinyPlease share your thoughts in the comments section. I’d also love to connect with you over social media so check my Contact page for that information. See the News page for announcements and remember to sign-up to receive news and posts by email. I’ve added anew sign-up tab on my FaceBook page to simplify the process. New followers can download The Black Bag via free coupon today! Also, the cover of my book, The Bow of Destiny, was revealed on 11/10/14 so take a look.

Thanks for reading.

P. H. Solomon

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Clip art licensed from Microsoft Office.

Blog developed via Scrivener

Complete DIY Self-Publishing Pt. 4: The Cover

This is the fourth part of a series about self-publishing a short e-book as a completely DIY project. Part 1 introduced why you should consider trying to self-publish on your own at least once. Part 2 dealt with some of the tools you will need to gather at some point to accomplish the project. Part 3 addressed the importance of formatting and using the tool of a style guide.

ToolboxVisual Affect and the Cover

The cover of a book may be one of the most important elements in the digital world. A weak cover can dull sales. However, with a smaller project the cover presents some difficulty since the project may not have the budget for a top-end cover. It’s at this point you may consider spending some money on a photo which you can use to develop into a cover. Personally, I went with a photo from iStockPhoto.com but I’ve also written about more sites too (this post was about using free photos for blog posts but these sites should have terms for buying photos for re-use as a cover).

Making the Cover

Once you’ve chosen a suitable photo as the basis of your cover, you’re ready to being working it. Here’s how my process went for The Black Bag.

1. I got in my toolbox and pulled out PowerPoint and created a slide with the photo.

2. Next I create text boxes and added my Title, by-line and additional information.

3. Save the file as a PowerPoint file (.pptx file extension).

4. Next re-save it with “Save As” and choose the .jpg (IMPORTANT: when prompt whether to save all slides or just the current one, choose just the current one).

That’s it for the basic cover.

HammerThe Final Touch

At this point, I had cover ready. However, my original was the incorrect size to up load so it needed some work. This required some photo editing to change the size of the photo. To handle this job, I went to another tool to handle the photo-editing: Gimp. I’m not an expert on this task so this article better explains how to re-size a photo using Gimp. It’s not a very hard process and when you’ve completed this your cover is ready unless you need to make some changes to the cover such as text size (make sure you can see this in thumbnail view of the file on your computer).

More Cover Resources

Need a little more information about covers before tackling this part of the project?

Rayne Hall discusses best practices with covers in her book: Why Does My Book Not Sell?

Here’s an article that shows in detail the process of using PowerPoint to create a cover.

Don’t have PowerPoint and want to use only free software for making your cover? This article shows how to use Gimp exclusively.

Not interested in using Gimp? Try free online Photoshop and watch this video.

My own cover is just below.

Available at Amazon, Smashwords and All Major E-Book Vendors!

Available at Amazon, Smashwords and All Major E-Book Vendors!

Have you tried making your own cover? Please share your thoughts in the comments section. I’d also love to connect with you over social media so check my Contact page for that information. See the News page for announcements and remember to sign-up to receive news and posts by email. I’ve added anew sign-up tab on my FaceBook page to simplify the process. New followers can download The Black Bag via free coupon today! Also, the cover of my book, The Bow of Destiny, was revealed on 11/10/14 so take a look.

Thanks for reading.

P. H. Solomon

Enter your email address to follow this blog and receive notifications of new posts by email.

Clip art licensed from Microsoft Office.