No matter how many times you handle your manuscript, or print it out, or turn it into an ebook, it just doesn’t feel like a book until it’s in book form: Printed, cut, collated, glued and in your hands.
Then it feels like a book.
I print my paperbacks with CreateSpace, Amazon’s print-on-demand distributor. Like everything else Amazon, CreateSpace is efficient, affordable and quick-to-ship (oh, and Amazon takes a cut, of course, for all these results; that’s capitalism at work, people).
The day my first paperback version of a book arrives is a day to celebrate indeed. And it’s a good thing! We’re only a week away from launch!
This proof was tricky to get right. I fiddled with it in Microsoft Word for nearly two weeks and saved it at least three dozen times. It took me a while to figure out the images in the text.
Yes, there are cute little black-and-white images of me at 15 in the text. How fun!
Here’s a tip for you self-publishers: Normally for a text-only manuscript, I can upload a Microsoft Word version of the page design. But when I did that with this manuscript, which includes six images in the text, the pages reflowed and made my Table of Contents inaccurate. The only way around this was to create a pdf version of the layout.
The other challenge I faced was trying to use an open type font. You must use true type fonts, not open type fonts, you must embed them, and honestly, it’s smarter to upload a pdf in any case. If any of this is over your head, you might want to consider hiring a book designer for your paperback.
In any case, these problems forced me to debug my manuscript multiple times before I could get a decent printed proof. But in the end, I succeeded! And now other lovers of the printed word will be able to read True, Dare, Double Dare, Promise or Repeat: On Finding the Meaning of “Like” in 1982.
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In the words of Private Hudson, made memorable by the late, great Bill Paxton, “Oh, man … and I was getting short.” Truth, Dare, Double Dare, Promise or Repeat: On Finding the Meaning of “Like” in 1982 comes out in one week, and I’ve been celebrating with a month-long blogging bonanza. I’ll be blogging here every day until the end of this month about my book, about memoirs in general and about the launch.