Tuesday, June 28, 2011

Indie Publishing Secrets Revealed #8-The Text to your Book.

This is a long post-but full of great info.

How is the editing going on your book? Have you either hired an editor or had multiple "people in the know" go over your work with a fine-toothed-comb? I cannot stress the importance of this! Do not skip this step.

Let's talk about formatting your print book.

You have a cover now, or at least the ability to create one, if you read my last post. Remember, you need a cover whether you are creating an ebook or print book. While you're in Createspace, go ahead and upload your interior file (the text in your book) to Createspace.
There are several ways to do this. First of all, make a second copy of your interior. Name it createspace interior file. Do not use your original to play around with.

I'm going to start from the beginning on Createspace.
Sign in. You will now be in your member dashboard. Click on "add a new title".  It will ask you to name your book. Type it in. I put in Watched. Do not use all caps.

Now you can put in a description of your book. (You can wait on this if you want) Think back blurb or the summary you read on the inside jacket of a book. This is what people will read on Amazon and the other sites you choose to send it to. It is what makes a person want to read your book. It sells it for you. You can change this a hundred times if you want to. I used the back blurb of my book. See it here.(scroll to "editorial review")

You can put a subtitle on your book if you want or just leave it blank. I used "Murder was just the beginning". Check out the link to see how they use it on your book page.

You can list a volume number if you like. I chose #1 because it was the first of a series.

Save and Continue

Now we are at the interior file (the text of your book) Whew!!

You can choose the paper color-white or cream. If you choose cream, you limit your choice of book size. I suggest white. But do what you like.

Trim size is your next decision. This is the size of your finished book. Choose a size the printer you are going to use, uses. If you are going to stick with Createspace, you can choose any of the sized they list. I chose 5.06 x 7.81 because I liked some books I had that were that size, but my local printer did not print a book that size, so I switched to 5 X 8, a size they do print. Not sure which to choose? Measure some books at your house and see what sizes you like or check with your local printers to see what sizes they print.

Save and Continue

Do not pick an ISBN yet! Click next at the top of the screen.

On the next page at the bottom you will see a link to file formatting. Click on that. It takes you to a disscussion board for file formatting.  You could read for hours about the pitfalls and problems associated with formatting. Look for a little bit, but then return to the previous page.

Now click on interior templates at the bottom of the page. Find the size book you chose and click on the Formatted template for that size book. Download it. Look over the file. It gives you an idea of how your book should look. Now delete that.

Now download the basic template. It will be blank. Paste your entire manscript into this template. Simply open your document and while holding down the control key, press A. This selects your whole manuscript. Then, while holding the control key, press C. This copies it.

Now go back to the basic template and right click on the mouse and choose paste. Your manuscript is now formatted for the book size you chose.

You may find some problems with the formatting. This is normal. Your page numbers may be off a bit or your chapters a bit off. Maybe your book has a lot more pages now. You can fix the problems for free by using the discussion boards. (We went there earlier. The link is on the page where you chose your book size.)

Go to the boards and ask away. Be patient. While you are waiting for an answer, search for the answer by scrolling through the interior formatting discussions.  If this drives you crazy, then hire createspace to do it for you. I don't think it's worth it. The cheapest option is $299. Maybe you have a friend who knows how to fix it. Don't get in a hurry.

Save this file in the mean time. I'll add a few tips about it on later posts.

You may be a lucky one who's manuscript pasted perfectly. Good for you. It took me a few weeks to get it all right.

Play around with it a little. You can always delete it if you mess it up. Just go back and re-paste into the basic template. No big deal. Play with it. Enjoy the journey.

Happy formatting!

1 comment:

kbrebes said...

Sounds awesome. Hope I get to that point one day...!