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Thursday, May 12, 2011

Publishing The Book

At some point this morning, Angel In The Rain went live on Barnes & Noble. Yippee! So now I have it up on Amazon, B&N, and Smashwords, who will eventually distribute it to Apple, Sony, Kobo and others.

I'm done. At least I've done all I'm going to with publishing this title. Now I can fully concentrate on getting the next book ready for publication.

This publishing stuff is time consuming, but I like the hands-on aspect and being the one in control of my own work. Control freaks, ahoy. This Indie author stuff is definitely for you. ;o)

Devon

Tuesday, May 10, 2011

If You Can Read This...

...you can read an ebook.

Did you know that? Until recently, I didn't. For a while I began to get frustrated because some of the books I wanted to read were only available as ebooks. Then, after buying my husband a Kindle for his birthday, I discovered I could download the Kindle app. from the Amazon site to my computer, and it's free!

Both the Kindle and the Nook have free apps for all your gadgets--PC, iPhone, Blackberry, iPad, and Android and they're absolutely free.

I like my PC version of the Kindle better than my hubby's actual device because I get a larger page area and instead of a bland list, I get icons of the beautiful covers in color.

So, if you haven't tried an ebook yet because you thought you needed one of the expensive readers, go ahead, try an ebook on your PC. You might be surprised how much you enjoy it.

Happy reading!
Devon

Thursday, May 5, 2011

Quality Control

I had intended to save this topic for a later date, but something just happened that prompts me to bring it up now.

On the recommendation of a Facebook friend, I downloaded a western historical by an author I'm not familiar with. I thought, oh, good, a new author with a whole list of books I haven't read already. Eagerly, I opened to the first page and started reading. The first brief paragraph was in the hero's point of view. The second paragraph was in the heroine's. What? That's where I stopped, and I won't be returning to this book. I refuse to read a book written by someone who ignores the rules of craft that I've had drummed into my head for the past fifteen years and that I abide by at all costs. How much easier it would be to whip out the pages if I didn't have to follow even the most basic rules, such as NO HEAD-HOPPING. This book was not self-published, nor was it from a small press. I find it hard to swallow that such blatant head-hopping is still allowed by the big pubs in this day and time. I mean really. First two paragraphs of the book!

End of rant.

Now, to the real topic of this post. Quality control.

A year ago, one of the reasons I wouldn't have considered self-publishing was the issue of quality control. With Amazon's Kindle program, B&N's Pubit, and a whole host of others, anyone out there, even down to their siblings and cousins, can publish any old thing they whip out on a word processing program and it doesn't cost them a dime to do it. How are the book buying consumers supposed to wade through all the crap to find books worth reading? It seemed there was no answer because the vetting process, the gatekeepers, had been taken out of the equation. This lack of any kind of quality control was the one aspect of the self-publishing stampede that troubled me the most.

Then, the ebook retailers provided the solution, and it was so simple. It's called sampling. All the major ebook retailers have sampling on their sites. You can try the beginning of any ebook before you commit to buying it. The sample depends on the book length. I checked and the sample of my book is something just over the first two chapters. Shorter lengths may only be the first chapter or so. Plenty enough material to tell whether or not a book is well written--or not--and if it's something we want to spend time reading. I even sample the books from the big NY pubs and I've run across quite a few clunkers that I decided not to waste my time or money on, and this after the blurbs made them sound so good. Thank goodness for samples. Now we don't have to rely on reader reviews, which may or may not have been posted by the author's friends and family.

Samples are definitely our friends.

Have you tried sampling yet?

Tuesday, May 3, 2011

Back From The Edge

Hi, all! I'm back. After many months of woolgathering and deep introspection (is there any other kind?), I've decided to return to the land of the living.

As some of you already know, or may have guessed, I've joined the Indie revolution, which is a rather pretentious way of saying, I'm self-publishing. And guess what. I'm loving it! This was a decision I didn't make lightly. And, yes, I've spent a lot of long nights trying to figure out how to do this and that. There's a big learning curve between writing the book and actually publishing the book. In the coming weeks, I hope to share with you some of the things I've learned during this process.

The most fun I had was making my own cover. I think it turned out fairly well, insofar as it reflects the two main characters and one glance lets you know, you're looking at a western historical. What do you think?

Just a year ago, I never would have considered going the indie route. (Ack, the horror! Only people who can't write self-publish. The stigma, the stigma!) But times have changed, and they continue to change, sometimes on a daily basis. After spending four years with a small press/epub, I can tell you with certainty, there are more advantages to putting my work on the market myself. At least, that's true for me.

So, what are your thoughts about the self-publishing frenzy taking place in the publishing industry? Would you ever consider becoming an Indie author? Or is the stigma that's long been associated with it still too real for you?

Devon