After a couple of e-mail exchanges, the local library (King County Library System) will be carrying Surveyor. Yep, five copies. Pretty cool. I know it means less sales (as people prefer free stuff), but it also opens it up to more readers. Besides, after borrowing books and movies from the library for over twenty years now, it’s payback time.
Here’s a special shout-out and thank you to Michael Z. Williamson for the Surveyor plug on his FaceBook page. I’ve been a fan of Mad Mike for years, starting with The Weapon, and love the whole Freehold series (and looking forward to the release of his upcoming book, Angeleyes.
For those not in the Amazon territory (or no desire to use Amazon), Surveyor is now available in ePub format (i.e., an e-book) on Kobo. Kobo is located in 29 countries, so to those 1 billion Rakutan Kobo customers, welcome to my website.
Forgot to mention, Surveyor is now available in paperback format. If you’re a reader, get it on Amazon (but buy it from me, not one of the many resellers trying to hijack it) or request a copy from your local bookstore (they can get it from Ingram).
Please, please, please support your local bookstore. For us, the two major ones are “A Good Book” in Sumner, WA and “The Sequel” in Enumclaw, WA.
Finally, success on the transition from Scrivener to ePub format. This means I’ll be able to upload it into Kobo, Apple Store, etc.
To quote one of my favorite movie lines (from Office Space), “damn, it feels good to be a gangster.”
So far, no joy in Mudville when it comes to converting Surveyor into an ePub file. Grrr. Hope to get this problem resolved in the next day or so, as I’m hoping to be on Kobo by the weekend. In other news, the paperback edition will be available on Amazon in the next 3-5 days (just approved the proof). Still waiting to hear back from IngramSpark on how that’s going (they’re a Print on Demand, or POD distributor that sells to resellers/retailers, like my friend Evelyn of “A Good Book and Cafe” in Sumner, WA. Go visit her for some great books and even better deals.
Well, so far I’ve managed to make Surveyor available on Amazon Kindle, but am still awaiting them to mail my paperback version so I can proof and approve it. They’ll notify me when they mail it, so until they do, it’s a waiting game.
CreateSpace found issues with my cover (not sure why, I think the cover artist did a great job). I hope to resolve that today.
The big problem is converting the book to an ePub format (used extensively throughout the non-Amazon.com world). I had installed the Nook reader app on my computer, so every time I tried to open ePub, it saved as a Nook format. This did not translate well to other readers (such as Kobo in Canada, eh – special shout out to Pete Drewcock for working with me on this by reviewing all the versions I sent him). I removed the Nook app, so the latest version worked fine. Just need to tweak it (more html work) before it’s set to go (but I’ve got papers to grade – did I mention I’m a college “Affiliate Professor” or something like that?)
Back to the salt mines.
Well, that didn’t take too long. The same day I submitted my Kindle formatted book to Amazon they approved it, so I’m now officially a “published novelist” (I’ve been a published author for years, nay, decades, but this is my first novel).
Check it out at Surveyor: Book 1 of the Corps of Discovery Series.
So, finally found a workaround on Kindle (I hope). Used one of their apps to convert the Word document into a Kindle format. Missing a Table of Contents, so hope that doesn’t create a problem. We’ll see. I uploaded it earlier today, then got to work on IngramSpark.
Along with being available on Amazon, the print copy will now be available worldwide. Wahooooo! IngramSpark’s system was soooo much easier than CreateSpace (and thanks to finding a promo code, didn’t cost me the usual $49 setup fee – gotta like that).
I’ll announce when the book is finally available at these various outlets (and will set up a means to buy e-books direct).
Over the past couple of days I’ve been busy formatting Surveyor for publication. The goal is to have it available from as many sources as possible. Of course, one can’t ignore the 800 pound gorilla that is Amazon, so my first efforts were directed at preparing Surveyor in CreateSpace and Kindle format. I’ll also be publishing through IngramSpark for retailers and in EPub format for Nook, Kobo, and whatever other resellers I can.
It’s been a learning experience.
Because I decided to do it on my own, I went and purchased ten ISBNs (the 13 digit number that nobody except purchases and catalogers look at). This was done through Bowker (the only place you can buy ISBNs in the US).
I use Scrivener for Windows for writing. It’s a great program, but I wish it had some of the features that the Apple version has (’nuff said).
I’m still struggling with the Kindle version, as my Scrivener won’t include the Part and Chapter headings (very frustrating). So, I’ve downloaded a couple of apps from Amazon that I hope will help (I’ll know shortly).
For CreateSpace, I was lucky enough to find a formatted template (probably from Amazon, but I don’t recall).
I produced a Word version of only the body of Surveyor first (I repeated this with the front and back matter), then copied and pasted that from the Word document into the CreateSpace template. The output document had some quirks that I had to overcome. I initially sought some professional help on a freelance board, but the formatting/page layup was several hundred dollars (and I thought, I can do that myself, so I did!).
First was that paragraphs wouldn’t break to fit on two pages, so I had to physically insert the break (simple action of placing the cursor before the break point and tapping the Enter key).
Second, it took me a while to figure out that odd and even pages could have separate headers and footers. Once I figured that out I was able to put the title on the even pages and my name on odd pages (fitting that it would be odd). I started the pagination on page 2, and then went through the document ensuring that all Parts and Chapters started on odd numbered pages (so when you read it, they all are on the right hand page – one of those little formatting tips I learned on YouTube).
I was able to insert section breaks at the beginning of each Part and each Chapter to remove all headers and footers). I also added some shadow drawings to the beginning of each Part, and at the end of the book (from the cover art).
Once I got the body formatted, I then worked on the front matter and the back matter documents. The front matter got pagination using lower case Roman numerals, and the back matter got nada (well, I did include an unedited first chapter of the sequel, Trekker).
Finally satisfied with all my formatting, I then created three PDFS (one for the front matter, one for the body, and one for the back matter).
I then went to PDFjoin.com and was able to merge the three PDFs into a single PDF and downloaded that.
The next step was to upload the PDF and the Cover Art PDF (by Patrick Turner in Vancouver, BC) into CreateSpace. A quick review showed one issue – my shadow drawings did not have a 300 dpi resolution (they were 72 dpi). Meh, small matter, and it’s okay if they’re a bit fuzzy.
CreateSpace then sent a PDF back suitable for Kindle. Sorry, but I’ve got a different ISBN for the ebook version, so it’s pretty much useless.
Everything has been submitted to CreateSpace, so now it’s just a matter of waiting to hear back from them on how quickly Surveyor will be available.
I just created an EPub version (haven’t checked it yet) and will continue to struggle with the Kindle version. Hope to have everything wrapped up today.