The joys and frustrations of my self publishing journey continues.

Yesterday we discussed my experiences so far with Amazon and Smashwords as I’ve worked my way through the self publishing cycles. Today I’d like to share with you my experiences so far with createspace, who I’ve chosen for the POD {print on demand} site for my novels.

Createspace: Is a subsidiary, or rather a sister site of Amazon.  This is the main site Amazon goes through for all of their paperback novels.

Since they work a lot with Amazon, I figured formatting for their site would be a breeze.

Wrong!

Once again, I’ve had to follow an entirely new set of guidelines and stipulations for a new set of formatting. Createspace prefers PDF files to be uploaded, but you can use word docs. Take my advice and do the PDF, it’ll save you a lot of headaches and frustration! It’s not that difficult to make and saves a lot of changes in text styling, formatting, and margin making. Especially if you conform the PDF to mimic the size of the paperback book you’ve chosen.

If you use word docs, it’ll go through hundreds of errors and demand a tons of changes before they will accept it on the interior designer preview. PDF only had four errors my first try {all dealing with the fact I’d chosen a 6×9 book and uploaded a 8.5×11 PDF.}

My husband quickly converted my word doc into a 6×9 PDF and fixed the writing to line up properly with just a few clicks of his mouse. {He’s really good at this stuff!!}

So we uploaded the new PDF with the proper margins, and formatting. Within five minutes the interior design preview reported it had found no major issues and that I’d receive an email within the next 48 hours, telling me the next steps that need to be taken.

So, now I sit here and wait for the email. It’s been about twelve hours now. Ugh! I hate waiting.  I never have been a patient person where waiting is concerned.

The cover art was created to their specs from the beginning, so uploading that was a breeze, which made creating the entire cover for the book quick and painless.

I’ve been informed that even after their designers review my book, it will take a minimum of a week before it’s available as a print edition. Then I have to buy a “proof” copy and have it mailed to the house, so I can check in person to make sure the finished product meets my expectations and requirements. After that it’ll go out on Amazon and the other retailers I chose as a paperback edition.

Many people I’ve talked to about it, still prefer the “feel” of a book while reading.

Fair warning: Paperback copies involve “per page” fees. Some can go high, some are low. I just checked the createspace order calculator. The preview alone {first 5 chapters} is 50 pages long. So that averages out to around $2.15  plus standard S&H. So you’re looking at $5.74 minimum for the preview copy {which is only the first 5 chapters.} My advice for those who want the paperback edition is to wait until I get the full novel out there. {Hopefully by the end of January 2013} So that the cost of it will equal the value of the purchase.

I’ll let you know when/if the designers approve my book for paperback editions.

So, those of you looking to get into self publishing, now you’re a little better prepared for what to expect. you can start adding notes for your book marketing budget.

Those of you waiting for a contract, good luck. Right now the market is flooded with tradition and self published books. Finding an agent is going to be tougher than before. But, no one says determination and hard work doesn’t pay off either. *wink*

Either way you go you {the writer} are responsible for writing, revising, polishing, and marketing your books. All of that lays squarely on the writer’s plates these days. Which the social networking craze, even traditionally published authors marketing their own books. Be prepared for a lot of research {aka homework} on all the different aspects, before you start writing that first book!

I’ve come to realizes that the choice of traditional publishing or self publishing is solely the writer’s choice these days.

How about you? What is your opinion on how writers are responsible for writing, revising, and marketing their manuscripts? What are your thoughts on traditional vs self publishing? Don’t be afraid to join in the conversations! Writers love feedback, but they also love to connect with their readers.

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About kittyb78

Catrina Barton is a licensed Kung-Fu Instructor of the Black Dragon style, and draws on that experience to make her fight scenes both realistic and action packed. She enjoys being surrounded by the stark beauty of mother nature. Whether it's a moon-lit starry sky, or a picnic by a peaceful waterfall cascading from the mountain side. Growing up no matter where she was physically, she always had at least one book in her hands and spent every free moment lost in a book. It's only natural that as she grew up, her passion for reading grew into an even stronger passion for writing, especially Young Adult Paranormal Romances. She is a proud member of many writing and marketing groups, and an active participant at Critique Circle and several other crit groups. Favorite personal quote: "An author cannot grow without both constructive criticism and encouragement."

11 responses »

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  2. Gerri Bowen says:

    I don’t see it as one better than another, Kitty. Both are good, just depends when, what particular book and what you want. Editing is sooo important.

  3. She Started It says:

    I wrote a blog post yesterday about how relieved I am that I don’t have to ONLY do traditional publishing to get published. I’m cheering on all the self-publishers out there! Good luck!
    http://anjalienjeti.com/2012/06/20/the-road-to-publication-aint-paved-with-yellow-bricks/

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