Sunday, 27 November 2011

A Trip to Iceland and a Surprise Award!

I've just got back from a trip to Iceland to find that I'd been award the Liebster Award from Rosemary Gemmell. You may remember that she was the one who showed me how to make the magic links to Amazon and Smashwords on my blog. So thank you very much, Rosemary!
She has at least two blogs that I know of: Reading and Writing
where she talks about writing her NaNo novel, among other topics, and Flights of Imagination, all about children's literature. She went to the book launch of Viking Gold by V. Campbell recently, and I'm going to have to read it, now that I've been to Iceland!
'Liebster' means dearest in German, and this award is to encourage new writers and bloggers who have less than 200 followers, so this is what each recipient has to do:

1. Thank the giver and link back to the blogger

2. Choose your 5 bloggers to receive the award and tell them by leaving a comment on their blog

3. Copy and paste the award on your blog

4. Hope those five people send it to their chosen bloggers!

So now I'm going to pass the Liebster Award on to the following five whose blogs I have

Susan E Willis for her delicious A Food and Love Story Writer. Every blog has irresistible
photos of food, as well as interesting stories.

Dot Scribbles for her fabulously detailed reviews of the latest books.

Scarlet Wilson for her informative and helpful blogs for the new romantic writer.

Angela Bell for her inspirational blog about literature and art with beautiful illustrations.

Catherine Miller for her entertaining and inspirational blog with great photos.

Best wishes to you all!

Sunday, 13 November 2011

Self-Publishing - Gipsy Moth Book Signing!

Thankfully, my books arrived on Friday lunchtime, just in time for my book signing on Saturday. So many thanks to Clare and the team at Direct POD for pulling that off for me! It's amazing how much room one hundred books take up; that's just a few of the boxes in the picture. But the beauty of print on demand is that I can order as many more as I want. I'm really glad that I didn't order 1,ooo! I don't know where I would have put them!
The book signing went very well yesterday. I sold quite a few in the beautiful barn where the farmers' market is held, and I got some leads where I might sell more which I'm going to follow up. I also got some ideas, e.g. make some notices with 'Book Signing Today' 'Local Author' and the price, '£7.99', because they answer lots of questions! Also, Direct POD sent me some posters and postcards, blank on the back for me to fill in. I thought that I could do it as I went along, but I didn't have the time, so I've printed the short description of my book that I wrote for Smashwords on the back with my blog and email details. Prospective customers can therefore pick them up to see what the book is about. I did distribute some on the tables laid for tea and cakes, but I think they would have been better with more information.
The stall beside me was the WI tea and cakes stall and I was desperate for the coffee and walnut cake which was gradually disappearing, slice by slice, beside me. I couldn't have any because I'd have got sticky hands, so I've made some little coffee cakes for tea today!
I've been checking my progress on Amazon. Today, I'm number 11,975 in the Amazon best sellers ranking, not bad considering I started at about 88,000!!!

Tuesday, 8 November 2011

I've published Gipsy Moth on Amazon Kindle and Smashwords!

At last I've published Gipsy Moth on Amazon Kindle and Smashwords, and sent my final pdf copy off for printing!
A week last Saturday, I was sent the loose leaf proof copy of my book, wrapped in it's lovely new cover, see left! (I think Samantha Groom did such a good job!) I worked solidly to go through it and get it back to Direct POD as soon as possible. I posted it back last Monday, proudly having used the proofreading marks from Collins Dictionary for Writers & Editors!
Clare Lill sent me the pdf corrected copy, but some of the line formatting hadn't been done. So I feverishly went through the whole book again, putting things right and finding some more of my own errors. There were two problems on Saturday: firstly I kept getting a message that some of the header or footer was outside the printable area, and it took half a day to find printable area under Page Set Up - Page Attributes- Manage Custom Sizes - Printer Margins - User Defined, and phew - that did the trick if they were set to zero. Secondly, although the title pages and body of the text were in one doc file on my computer, they would only save as two in pdf, but Clare said she would be able to sort that out for me. At last I was satisfied and mailed them off. Hopefully they will be back on Friday for my book signing at the local farmers' market, where I hope there will be lots of people wanting a paperback with their organic sausages!
As far as the epub copies of my book went, I found, as I said before, the advice from Freda Lightfoot and Catherine Ryan Howard invaluable and the Amazon copy uploaded without any hitch. Hopefully, the Smashword copy or copies, as they are made for multiple formats are all ok too. At the moment, although it's published, I'm waiting for the AutoVetter to check it for the Premium Catalog so it can be distributed to the Apple iBookstore, Barnes and Noble, Sony, Kobo and others.
I would like to thank Rosemary Gemmell, as well, who told me how to add the buttons to the right, (through the design tab in dashboard) so I could make a direct link to Amazon and Smashwords.

Tuesday, 1 November 2011

Fantastic Book Cover by Samantha Groom

Here is my fantastic book cover designed by Samantha Groom. I'm really pleased with it.
I sent her some ideas, but she came back with some even better ones, and was pleased to change the layout, shading and font until we arrived at this on the left. She also designed the spine and back of the book because I'm having some paper copies printed as well as listing it on Amazon.
I'm so excited about it all and I was thrilled to see all her suggestions dropping in my inbox.
I can really recommend her for her excellent service.

My novel should be on Amazon within the next week. I'll put up a post when it appears.