Publish? Forget it? Part 2…

The omens are starting to judder, people: a definite tremor at the foundations, setting up the sort of overall vibration you watch in frozen fascination until it settles – or the whole edifice comes crashing down.

Life wasn’t meant to be easy, so they say. But for someone born in an era when phone calls still went through an operator, a good radio was hot property and computers weren’t even a glint in their father’s eye… For someone who didn’t discover the joys of the web until she was 60… Let’s just say admitting the ‘not easy’ part is hard enough: when your attempts to get help fall flat on their faces, you have to wonder whether the Universe is holding up a big fat sign saying, WRONG WAY, GO BACK.

A cover. That was all I wanted. So I did my homework, looked at every site I could find, chose one – and hit a brick wall. Their order form wouldn’t download. Back to the drawing board (so to speak). Choice two wasn’t taking on new projects. Choice three – well they haven’t replied to my query yet, so while I was waiting, I downloaded the Smashwords Style Guide.

117 pages looks pretty daunting to a novice, but hey! I’m tough. Print it out for easy access and dedicated perusal – or perhaps not. Blank sheets padded the printed sheets at such a rate that the paper was running out like water down the plughole, until with a final screech, the printer jammed. Bugger. The pages weren’t numbered, so what with that and the blanks, where we were at took a bit of working out, and meanwhile – inevitably – I started to read it.

B-i-i-g mistake! This was a foreign language. This was something that would take me days to work through, and even if I managed it, it would go through the Smashwords Meatgrinder and emerge as a string of sausages. This would not be productive use of your time, Helen…

A formatter. That was what I needed. Yes, more money, but a case of discretion being the better part of valour… So I did my homework. Turns out the easiest option was the first choice for my cover. Where the order forms wouldn’t download. To get the order forms, I needed to download Google Chrome, which I’d had before and didn’t like, but what the hell.

So… No, enough. Downloading Google Chrome sounds easy, doesn’t it. Until they discover you’ve had it before and uninstalled it and forgotten your password…

I have now paid money to choice #1 for formatting to Smashwords and Amazon, and more money for a cover. Sounds like it’s under control, doesn’t it. But I’ve still got to work out the uploading, yet…

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13 Responses to Publish? Forget it? Part 2…

  1. I find it hilarious that a Style Guide is full of blanks and doesn’t have page numbers.
    Isn’t this all part of the thing they tell you is good for kids – the “Gee that was hard but I did it” school of self-esteem? Never understood why it was so outrageous to want an easier life…
    Hope you get there!

    • The blank pages were probably my fault. Somehow.
      As for the rest – the older I get, the more I agree. At my age, doing what’s good for your character has whiskers on it. If my character’s not strong enough now, it never will be.

  2. ChristineR says:

    Good luck, Helen. Fingers crossed.

  3. bkpyett says:

    Helen, I do wish you well with this project. I hate reading ‘how to’, anything to do with computers.
    May it come together with the help of Smashwords/ Amazon.

  4. Go, Helen! You got this, girl!

  5. I admire your tenacity more than I can say. The urge to throw something through a screen would have overcome me by now. And I rather adore the term “bugger.” It must come in handy through this ordeal. Keep us posted, won’t you?

  6. Fran Macilvey says:

    Dear Helen

    All these stalls do indeed sound incredibly familiar. And as for the ol’ edifice tumbling down? I had that dream the other night….lots of rumbles in the ground…..signalling good changes? Or bad? Could be either.

    Could be that the Universe is saying, ‘don’t go this way, girl….’ Might also be that a fear of progress sabotages you, just when you make a decision you are happy with. This is what happens to me, anyway, so then I go away and do something else for a while…..sometimes, that helps! xxxxx 😀

    • The ‘fear of progress’ scenario sounds very like me, Fran. I’m constantly wondering whether the book is worth putting up. Well – as you know, it’s taken me years to get even to this point! But I got the first cover designs today, That cheered me up.

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