dispersing & reflecting light through poetry

Posts tagged ‘self-publishing’

Seeing RED

No, I am not angry. In fact, I am extremely excited. RED is complete!

This has been a long process (too long), from conception to publication. Some of the poems for RED were written a couple of years ago with this book in mind. I had to get serious and set aside the time to devote to actually getting it accomplished. Thanks to The Christian Writers Network at Cathedral of Praise in North Charleston, SC for their support and encouragement; to my wife for putting up with a poet; and to the Lord Jesus Christ for not giving up on me, even when I do.

RED is available at CreateSpace.com and Amazon.com.

Thank you bloggers and readers for your comments and views. Now onward to ORANGE.

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Preparing RED to be READ 5

This is the part where I just want to be done. To say that the work is complete, send it out there to do what it will, and move on to the next project. But no.

I was not completely satisfied with the graphics. I spent the afternoon getting the resolution right for printing. Re-uploaded the new manuscript with updated pictures. The report back from CreateSpace showed no problem with low resolution graphics. Hurray!

I now await my second proof copy to see how things look this time. I just want it to be done right; the best quality product with the tools I have at hand and my experience with those tools. Just because it’s self-published, just because it’s just poetry, and Christian poetry at that, doesn’t mean it has to be low quality. But because it’s self-published and because it’s Christian I need to give it the best polish possible.

Preparing RED to be READ 4

Received my proof copy yesterday! Living close to the CreateSpace offices is a plus for getting things shipped promptly. (And I pay standard shipping.)

Looking through page by page, most everything seems good. The images aren’t too bad with the low resolution; one or two could be better. I need to remember the 300 dpi lower limit if using pictures next time.

I did find two glaring errors in the table of contents. This is why multiple proofreaders are essential. But this is an easy fix I’ll do this morning and then immediately upload the new file. Within a day or two RED should be available at CreateSpace.com and Amazon.com.

Preparing RED to be READ 3

Doing edit checks on the RED manuscript in CreateSpace this morning. The automatic interior check in CreateSpace found issue with the size of my images (requires at least 300 dpi for quality printing). I thought I had fixed the problem with Paint Shop Pro, but alas it indicates they are still not right. I’m going to have a proof copy printed to see how low quality the images actually appear in print. I wasn’t going for HD, so they may turn out okay.

I was mostly looking at the visual impact in the manuscript: were the paragraphs aligned correctly, did the images track well with the text, any glaring setup issues. I had to make a couple of corrections to one or two pages where the paragraphs/subtitles were not on the right page, but those were quick fixes and the file uploaded again. Just took a few minutes.

Cover design and back cover text are complete, so I should have a printed proof by this time next week.

Copyright © 2015 Scott Daniel Massey

Preparing RED to be READ 2

With one poem left to be completed for RED (and I’m still playing with it), I’ve been working on getting the manuscript ready for upload to CreateSpace. Two things I’ve been doing: converting blog links to notes in the book and creating my own images to add color.

Converting the links within blog posts is a bit tedious. Fortunately, copying the text from WordPress to my Word document maintained the hyperlink. So merely a bit of copy/paste, addition of subscripts, and a lot of back and forth between pages.

Creating the drawings was a bit fun. I thought about adding photos of red objects within the text, but taking the time to find royalty free images and the possible cost: too much to invest. In actuality, I wasn’t going to use any images whatsoever–let the poems create the color. But in looking at the manuscript page to page, there was just too much white space. So I jumped into Microsoft Paint and drew some red line images. They’re a bit simple and crude, but I think they add just enough color to keep it interesting.

sunrise

Copyright © 2015 Scott Daniel Massey

Preparing RED to be READ

This morning has not been spent writing. Today was about the nuts and bolts of putting together a chapbook: interior layout, cover design, bio pics and logos. I published my previous chapbooks on CreateSpace.com (click on Home for a list of available titles). CreateSpace is easy to use; they walk you through the process. Working on my first book project for an hour or so in the mornings, I had a printed proof copy within a week of beginning. (Of course the home office is located in nearby Charleston, so standard delivery doesn’t take long.) And my only cost was the proof plus shipping. Now if you’re not into all of the editting and design and so forth, they do have options for professional assistance. Since my budget does not include paying for my obsession, I do it myself.

Now I know that for the longest time self-publishing has been looked down upon by the publishing world. There’s a reason it is referred to as “vanity press”. In the past, writers with the money to spend on printing their own work could bypass the review of editors, the time spent searching for publishers, the heartache of rejection. It’s still possible today. But in this digital era the rules are changing. Anyone with a laptop or tablet can be published. Writing a blog is self-publishing.

So today I prepared for the publication of RED. I set up the title as a project at CreateSpace and they assigned it an ISBN. The manuscript for RED is still unfinished, but that’s okay. I can upload revisions as necessary until I’m ready to publish and even after that I can make changes if needed (e.g. typos that get missed the twelve hundredth time you proof). I create templates for publication that just need the text added and maybe a little tweeking, so that’s what I uploaded for now.

I worked on the cover design. That included editting my personal logo to fit the color scheme, trying to select the right bio pic (though I may go in a different direction with that altogether), and adding the back cover text. CreateSpace provides free cover design templates that can be editted, as well as royalty free stock photos. If you don’t find what you need, you can upload your own, or you can pay to have it done. Options are wide open.

But what does this have to do with the process of writing works of poetry? The process of poetry is not truly complete until a reader reads and gains something from the poem. As the poet I don’t get that satisfaction unless I’m there when you read it or you are there to hear me read. Putting together the physical chapbook is a way for me to have some form of completion to the process. And it’s another step toward you receiving from the work. And when it’s finally totally printed, there’s something about holding those bound pages in your hands.

Copyright © 2015 Scott Daniel Massey

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