This post is a continuation of Monday’s and is about creating and publishing a book using Amazon’s CreateSpace. All things considered, it was a delightful experience despite our several challenges. What made the process more pleasant and doable was the customer service we received from CreateSpace.
I’ll share more on the exceptional cadre of young men and women who guided us, but for today, my goal is to wrap up the telling of our experience so that I can move on to the book itself: why we did it and why you should and could do it too.
After our marathon day of reading, editing, and correcting, we took a two-day break and met again. This time the number of proofers had fallen to three, mainly because we were confident that we had this thing in the bag. How naïve we were! We three actually thought we were practically done.
As we proofed and revised that afternoon, we found several tiny but significant errors that had to be corrected. For example, I had put the wrong verse for a scripture in Hebrews, and if Doug hadn’t caught it, a reader might have gone to the source and discovered something entirely different. At last we adjourned, and Kathryn and I set a time to meet the next day—and then the next and the next.
Towards the end of the week (it’s all a blur now), we thought, “It’s a wrap.” Gleefully, we uploaded the manuscript to CreateSpace, and all was going smoothly until we came to the cover step. Since our cover was in three PDF files instead of one, our cover wouldn’t work—no way, no how. Our cover creator was in Chicago, so we tossed around some ideas and then decided to call it quits for the evening.
The next morning appeared, bright and beautiful and crisp, and our enthusiasm waxed strong. At long last, we uploaded a fine cover to accompany the anthology and pushed the magic button, the one that sets a manuscript on its way to publication. After 24 hours we learned that the document had met the publication standards, and Kathryn ordered copies for an upcoming SCWW conference and for our group members.
Many of us received our copies yesterday, and we LOVE them. Yes, there are a few niggling issues, but they are all easy to fix. The cover photo looks too pixelated, should is written twice on the back cover (should should), and a few places need to be bolded. None of these errors are huge, but since we want our book to be one that everyone who reads it will enjoy, we’re going to correct everything next week.
About those corrections, one of the many things I like about self-publishing is that the author can revise and re-upload as many times as her heart desires. While that might seem like a hassle to some people, my writer friends and I feel that it’s preferable to having obvious errors. I’m not saying Serving Up Memory will be absolutely perfect this time next week, but I am saying that it will meet our tough standards.
My next post will be about the motive for writing this book and the reasons why you should consider writing one too.