Thursday, October 3, 2013

The Indie Author's Guide to: Building a Great Book

Happy Thursday, good people of the blogosphere! I was gonna write another review today, but I didn't get finished with the book I was reading. Since I never half-a$$ anything, I refuse to review before I'm done. Sorry! So, instead, I'm gonna talk about one of my books that's an asset for Indie authors. Why? Well, I see a ton of questions popping up all over the place about self-publishing. The Indie Author's Guide to: Building a Great Book has the answers you're looking for. Let's get going, shall we?

First, about the book:
Title: The Indie Author's Guide to: Building a Great Book
Author: Jo Michaels
Genre: Non-Fiction How-To
Length: 54 Printed pages
Links: Amazon $2.99 Smashwords $2.99 B&N $2.99

Description:
Indie author? Banging your head on your desk? You need The Indie Author's Guide to: Building a Great Book. Not just for e-books. This guide contains helpful tips and tricks to make your book look like it came from a major publisher. Guided sections walk you through how to format your book for all platforms, how to create a dynamite cover, how to brand yourself as an author, and how to build a perfect book for printing. Indie authors, let's give the big houses a real run for their money!


I'm sure you're all wondering why I wrote this book. Well, it's because, like most Indie authors, I struggled to learn all I needed to know in order to self publish. I thought: Why not help others since I've been through a lot of this stuff and save them the headache?

It's not just about building books. It's about building your brand, your e-book, and your print book.

Why is it so short? Because it's also meant to be a pocket reference. Something that won't take up a ton of space in your bag or purse. A book you can carry with you everywhere. I priced it low because Indie authors just starting out don't usually have a ton of money to play with.

But in a book that short, what can you possibly get out of it?

To tell you the truth, I cut out all the fluff. It's very straight to the point. Here's a ToC for you to look over:

Section One – Branding Yourself
  • Choosing an Identity
  • Creating a Logo (or having one created for you)
  • Color Scheme Dos and Don’ts
  • Consistency is Queen – Because Kings are controlled by Queens!
Section Two – Formatting Your Manuscript
  • Dos and Don’ts when Writing Your Book
  • Quick Tips for Better Legibility
  • Building Your Save System
  • Different Formats for Different Platforms
Section Three – Building a Digital Cover
  • Size IS Important!
  • Images
  • Font Choices – Why does it Matter?
  • Using Layers
Section Four – Final Checks
  • Uploading and Proofing
Section Five – Business Considerations
  • Choosing your distributor(s)
  • Places to Sell and Market Your Book
Section Six – If Your Book is a Print Version
  • Your Book’s Guts
  • Orphans and Widows
  • Pesky Page Numbers
  • Running Headers
  • Cover Considerations
  • Explaining Bleed and Safety
  • Conversion to CMYK for print
  • Math Involved

Why do I feel I can write such a book with this kind of information?

Here's the forward from the book:
Before we begin, let me tell you the basic things you will need to format your book by these guidelines. If you have another program you’re more familiar with, use that. This book is meant to be a guide only.

I reference Adobe Photoshop for building covers in The Indie Author’s Guide to: Building a Great Book. If you use Gimp or some other image manipulation software and know where the panels I discuss in this book are, use your program.

I reference Microsoft Word 2007 for formatting interiors in The Indie Author’s Guide to Building a Great Book. If you know how to do the things outlined in this book in another program and prefer it, use yours.
In most of this book, I’m assuming you have a basic working knowledge of your chosen program and are familiar with tabs and menus.

I’m passing on knowledge that will help your book appear more professional in the mass market. Period.
My expertise lies in the field of Graphic Design and a lot of what you’ll find here imparts knowledge I learned during my studies and things I have discovered on my own while publishing my books. I spent a year as a Graphic Design tutor and was chosen amongst the other graduates in my final year to design the commencement cover (they loved it so much they used it again the following year).

I’ve listened to common complaints people have about self-published books and tried to address those areas here as well so we all look like we went to design school and have worked at a big publishing house our whole lives (or at the very least, that we can play with the big boys – and do it well).

Section six is the longest section because consideration of a print version of your book requires a lot of work. Follow me once and keep me around for a quick reference guide.

You may ask me additional questions via Twitter @WriteJoMichaels if you feel compelled to do so.
If you indulge in banging your head on the desk or tearing out your hair while reading this book (the very thing I’m trying to help you avoid – bald authors with red foreheads make us all look nuts), I take no responsibility. Enter at your own risk and enjoy!

As a funny, I also created an awesome mousepad over on Zazzle that screams to the world how this book saved you. check it out: TIAG Mousepad.

I hope this helps some of you achieve your dreams!

Well, that's all for today, folks! Until next time, WRITE ON!

Jo

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