Sunday, September 18, 2011

Typesetting the "Real" Book

Today I took on the tedious job of typesetting for the physical book.  The ebooks, which are already available on nook and kindle, also received a lift when I went through and smoothed out a few more items that had been brought to my attention.

In short, I would like to say that typesetting and design for an ebook and typesetting and design for a physical copy are two different animals.  I reintroduced myself to math today while trying to figure out how large I needed to make my exterior cover to accommodate the number and thickness of the pages inside the book.  Hello, moving target!  I made my cover using GIMP (it's free program available online), and then slowly went through and corrected all of my text justification issues, headers and footers, copyright info, dedication, title page, and on and on and on.... I had all of image as movable layers, but it still meant I had to move the front and back cover layers to fit the fluid spine as I went on, correcting all the problems as I spotted them.

This process was literally my entire day today, from when I woke up until almost bedtime (well, okay, I shuffled laundry between the washer and dryer too, but no folding).  But at the end of it all, I can proudly say, TAHDAH!!!

My files are now in review at Createspace.  I'm hoping to move forward and have a review copy ordered by the end of the week, and hopefully the hard copy of Arrival of the Traveler will be available about the same time that the ebooks for Deception of the Magician are out in November.

I have never appreciated ebooks more in terms of cost.  After finishing up the nitty-gritty of the design stuff, I went to look at what I could reasonably list the book at.  Listing the hard copy for around ten dollars more than the ebook, I make the same royalty--about $0.40.

Admittedly, I had wonderful parents who covered my book expenses for most of my childhood, but I was once a poor college student.  (I am sure the supportive parents of avid readers will appreciate this too).  As a lifelong book junkie, I am going to try to keep my prices down.  I intend to always offer the first ebook in a series at a discount, because I know that the first book is always a gamble for the reader.  You never know if the new series is going to be your cup of tea, and the sticker price is part of the decision sometimes.


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