Sunday, June 16, 2013

Nuts and Bolts

This is not a terribly interesting post so here
is a cute image to go with it.
Very few people know how a novel comes together. Not even authors really know unless they self-publish, because the editorial and layout team at the publishing house handles it. That’s why so many self-published novels come out so badly – margins too wide, font too small, no page numbers, overly simple cover. People try to reduce page count to reduce price, which isn’t a good trade-off for the reader. And some people publish on eBook only and don’t worry about it.

I had some experience with this when I self-published Pemberley Shades as a POD (print on demand) back in 2008. I was trying to copy the layout of the 1949 edition to be loyal to the text, right down to the number of pages and the centering of the page numbers. But I had to guess at the font.

I’ve now done it eight times, and it remains tedious. When it comes back from the copy-editor, I review all the changes and upload it to Createspace, where they reformat it to my chosen trim size (which is very common but not preferred by their printer). Then it’s time to go in and chose the font, number the pages, and choose things like whether the chapters should have capital names and whether the count should start on page 2 and whether to number the introduction. Every single thing you see on the page is the result of a careful decision – or unfortunately, a not-so-careful decision, which is why I keep changing fonts between editions. Arial for Book 5 was a bad idea, but I didn’t know anything. Book 6 I used the recommended Garamond, but it turned out I had a weird edition of Garamond and that’s why it looks strange. Book 7 is in Minion Pro or something like that, or I hope it will be but it involves a lot of formatting issues with Createspace.

Boring, right? But it takes hours and hours and it’s something I have to do, always forgetting how long it actually takes until it’s 4 am and I’m still doing it and ON G-D IT GOES ON AND ON.

Book 7 (Young Mr. Darcy in Love) is almost done. We’re shooting for a July 1st release, but it may be a bit later than that if Amazon holds it up with processing. It will be available on all eReader formats from Smashwords. If you would like a review copy, contact me. If you would like a print copy, you are eligible for one if you have reviewed at least five of my other books on Amazon. They don’t have to be long and they should be honest reviews, but it costs me money to send out print copies so I need some reliability.

Also coming up with July: Lots of giveaways and sales on my older books! So stick around. There’s lots more coming up. 


Anonymous said...

I am asking question why you have thought for this name for this blog?

parallel pins
parallel dowel pins

Anonymous said...

I think the name for this blog at author's name and i must say given information is awesome.

ISO 8734
ISO 2338