Wednesday, 26 October 2011

Did someone tell me this would be easy?

Oh groan.

First - all the formatting for createspace. I did complicated things with copying and pasting and retyping bits to get rid of the wretched lines. Reread it. Yippee - nearly there.

Don't rush, advises Catherine Ryan Howard (find her website here). This is not the time to throw it all together. Make sure it's right first time. You'll only end up with a rubbish proof that you've paid for, and then you'll have to redo it to order a better proof which you will also have to pay for. What's more it will take time - the book has to be shipped from America.

Don't rush. What planet is she on? I know she's right, but let's be realistic. When you're that close to getting the show on the road all you want is to tick the right boxes and get it going. So yes, I rushed. And am now sitting back, waiting for proofs that will need changing and I know it will cost time and money but ho hum, I was impatient and that's just how it is.

While you're waiting, she said, you can be getting on with formatting for Kindle.

She warns me to make plenty of coffee.

Right, I was sitting comfortably. Delete all formatting from the document. No fancy lines, no additional spaces, no tabs, no surprises that Word dropped in when you weren't looking. Then, begin again. Indent paragraphs. (No tabs - repeat, no tabs. I got that - there are no tabs. No extra spaces - got that too.) I checked it, checked it again, saved it. Saved it again.

And opened the kindle website. Registered. Uploaded the cover - this was going well. Uploaded the book. Wait a minute or two while kindle recognises my masterpiece and rearranges it for their readers. Now, check out the book - this is almost done.

A page appears on the screen that looks like a kindle - and I could go through it page by page.

How did those tabs get there? Those line spaces? How come it read all my old formatting which I'd deleted - rediscovered tabs and lines? How can it see things which don't exist any more?

I checked my document. No - that was fine. I really hadn't let one single tab, one stray space, survive. I tried again. Stupid, really, trying the same thing twice. And no, it didn't work the second time either. Fortunately it was late by then, and I had the sense to shut the computer down and head for the wine.

There's been an awful lot of swearing in this house since then.


  1. ouch! At this stage, I know Lexi's advice is to look at the html version where it should be possible to see the tabs and so on, and excise them more easily

  2. Thanks, Dan. Catherine Jane Howard implies I can do this without fiddling about with HTML (like I know how to do that anyway). I'll not be defeated . . . but may be a little while!

  3. Did you make any changes with Track Changes turned on? If so, you might need to accept all changes and turn it off before saving.

  4. Oh....what a nightmare. Did you ever figure out where the tabs came from?

  5. Miriam - I don't think I hung onto Track Changes, but then I've made so many alterations to this I could have done anything!

    And the tabs, N - it did have tabs in it, once upon a time, so Kindle have rediscovered something that existed in a much earlier draft.

    But I'm still hanging in there - this will happen!

  6. This would have been the point where I would have decided to make a career in something easier - like a lion tamer :-)

  7. Sarah - talking of lions, there was an interesting episode in Nepal when I was chased my a wild boar . . .

  8. {HUGS} And you didn't hurl the 'puter out the window?? I'm impressed. Though, to be honest, swearing is cheaper ;o) Hang in there, Jo, it will happen!!! We're cheering you on! especially when you keep dropping little tid-bits ...

  9. Joy - I'm almost there, I'm almost there . . .