Wednesday, January 5, 2011

Nuts and Bolts. Boring Old POD File.

by Louis Bertrand Shalako


All Rights Reserved

The basic problem with my print on demand (POD) file for 'The Case of the Curious Killers,' is that the left indents went all nutzo and the solution sort of makes the right margin crooked again.

Maybe it's just a matter of pecking away and rewriting sentences for two or three which case I don't know if I can really hack it.

It seems that other people can format a file to make a nice right margin justified book, and so shall I...hopefully.

If worst comes to worst, I will take my most recent and up to date 'Smashfile' and simply EPUB it to! I say that because I honestly thought or believed that Epub-ing stripped out page and chapter breaks.

Over on 'Goodreads,' my e-books all seem to open up on the cover in the normal way, but then they scroll down like flowing text in an e-reader of some sort.

Yet another author's book that I checked goes page-by-page and chapter by chapter. She had a table of contents, and that may be the difference. Goodreads only uploads Epubs, so I am curious as to the actual difference.

Do I seem confused by all these versions, and all of these formats???

It seems like an important question, as over at, you can upload an Epub produce your paperback. I have to admit, I am curious what all this is going to look like.

One of my options is to take another clean file--again the Smashwords .doc file--and pursue the 'nuclear option' outlined in the Smashwords Style Guide.

It may come down to that. Basically just make a .txt and start again, and maybe pray a little bit.



Promotion also has its challenges for me. On Goodreads, you have to have a print book to participate in their 'giveaways.' While this would be expensive anyway for certain people depending upon their personal circumstances, it sounds like a really good idea.

For that reason, I have gone into my book settings, the 'edit book' button up on the right side of the individual book page, and set the price/terms to 'free.' If I see that that works, I will announce my 'giveaway.' (I guess.)

And at that point, the formatting really starts to matter, doesn't it?

That's the nuts and bolts of self-publishing, bearing in mind that all of our mistakes are on public display at the forum. It is as glamorous as all hell.

Another basic problem is shyness. Who in the hell am I to ask someone to review my book? And why should they?

To participate in discussion groups implies some knowledge of the subject matter. If I review someone's book, theoretically it should be a new release! No one really needs another review of 'Huckleberry Finn,' or whatever.

My everything for free business model has its stregths and it has its weaknesses. It starts to fall apart at some point...

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