So, to publish a book, the first thing I had to do was choose a service. I didn’t have much money to spend, so I went with a free service. I chose a DIY “bare-bones” publishing service called Wordclay.com (which actually closed its doors in December 2012). I wanted my book to be available in print and as an eBook. OK, so that wasn’t so hard (although I had no idea I should have hired an editor to make sure my book was in tip-top shape).
I then needed to create a cover. I contemplated either spending the money on a cover designer or buying the desktop publishing software and doing it myself. I decided that no one else could have the love for my book that I had, so it should be me to create the cover (I know, kind of skewed thinking, but there it was.) And then I would also have the software at my disposal when I needed it again.
I did my research and determined that a program by Serif – Page Plus X3 was the perfect program.
Now, what about the cover picture? I didn’t have much experience with sites to buy images, but I knew there could be copyright issues involved in using someone else’s pictures. To avoid any copyright blunders, I decided to use my own picture.
Of course, there were strict requirements for formatting the cover – from bleed margins to spine-width calculations to color quality. I was pretty proud of myself for studying the instructions for both Page Plus and Wordclay, and ended up with a decent cover (or so I thought. Looking back now, it seems the picture of my son’s eye – yes, you read that correctly – his EYE – was not properly scaled, so now when I look at it, it’s a little bit fish-eyed.) But at least I was ready to publish – or so I was convinced at the time.
Here is what I learned:
- Consider paying a professional to copy-edit your book, and to create a cool cover (maybe even using some Photoshop magic)
- Just because you CAN do it yourself doesn’t mean you always should.
- DO. NOT. QUIT.
More to come….