Sunday, October 7, 2012

On Following in the Steps of Others

Well, I'm moving on at a good pace with my book, the first of the trilogy. Today I came across an e-book from a website by an author who has laid out a road-map for anyone interested in self-publishing. Her name is J.F. Penn and she has already self-published two books that have done exceedingly well. She has a multi-function site (website/blog) where she offers a very informative e-booklet called the AUTHOR 2.0 BLUEPRINT. You can find her here at THE CREATIVE PENN.

Well, I spent the day reading her e-booklet, and it's so chocked with information that it's going to take me even longer to go through all of the beneficial links. What was really insightful, and what I had somewhat learned from reading the blog from an e-publishing site, BOOKBABY.COM, is that a good marketing tool for your book is Facebook Pages. Facebook Pages are nothing like Facebook because its purpose is not to keep you connected to the everyday life of everyone of your family and friends, instead it introduces you and your work to anyone interested in finding more about you. It's a professional connection that your readers can use as a conduit straight to you.

I put it together in a few minutes and tried to use another site called PAGEMODO.COM to design it. Pagemodo is supposed to be a simple way to make high quality Facebook Pages for a price, but it didn't work. I spent half the day trying to log into it without making ANOTHER Facebook Page, but couldn't get it to do anything but market to me. So, I gave up on it and decided to go it alone. I have to say, I did a simple approach using one of the apps in the Windows 7 operating system called PAINT. A very easy program that allow you to manipulate, on a limited basis, your photographs. I took one of my photos that I like, put my name and sub-title on it and then cropped it to fit the headers on both my Blog-site and my Facebook Page. When done, I was quite pleased with myself. You can see the fruit of my work above on this blog-site. Nothing really involved, but it does look better than the generic header and wallpaper that you get with the BLOGGER application.

Then I went into the third book of my trilogy. I've pushed myself over this weekend...well maybe not pushed but flew through the writing to practically the last chapter. The book was coming together like lightning, so I stayed behind the keyboard to get it done. I seem to amaze myself by just letting the characters do their thing and not really worry about the direction of the story or where I want it to go. It's like it's on autopilot. Or maybe being piloted by the characters and not being forced or pushed about by me to fit a conclusion that might not be organic. I really don't know how this works but it does.

Further today, I drew more from the AUTHOR 2.0 BLUEPRINT, which was an entire self-publishing road-map. So, what I did was take a flowchart template from VISIO and made the road-map into an easy to follow diagram that I can chart for myself. This will work fine for me to decide what actions to take next so that I don't waste time working on things that don't fit in with the plan to self-publish by Christmas. That's my deadline, Christmas.

Finally, today I did it. I went to BOOKBABY.COM and paid for the Premium Package. Yeah, I did it, and the tons of benefits that come with it. Overall, this is the book distributor that I've decided to go with, so since this is the case, why not take the plunge and get the money part of this out of the way. Also I wanted to work on my book cover, which they do for an extra charge, and the website for the book, which BOOKBABY.COM gives you free for 60 days. Here's the thing: I was ready to work on these tools and found that I can't get to them without first uploading my book to the distributor. This messed me up because I wanted to get these things out of the way before the book came into being so that when I was done with it, it would come into the world with all these support tools already in place.

But it looks like you have to do the book first, which makes no sense to me. So I still have to wait for JP to finish editing, and for me to finish revising, and then JP to do a proofread of it before going to the distributor. Which means it's going to be a long time before I can get all these things out (Book cover/web site). I sent BOOKBABY.COM an email asking about this oversight, but we'll see what reply I'll get from them on Monday. Probably a stupid one...”Oh, the 'program' is not designed to do that”, “Oh, I can't do that,” or “Oh, we never thought of that.” All of the above means that they'll not allow me to get these things out of the way first.

So I'm seriously on my way now. If you think I'm doing good so far, and since I haven't gotten hung up in any scams or problems, I've left you links to follow in my footsteps. I hope they are as beneficial to you as they were to me.

Well, everything worked for me except PAGEMODO.COM. If you get this to work leave me a comment. Help me out too.

Gregory Delaurentis

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