Wednesday, 12 December 2012

Phew... neglected my diary

A deluge of projects and the inquiries the past few weeks kept me from updating my self publishing diary.

I'm now pinching some and sharing my progress, with goodies and news I mentioned previously.

We wrapped up my son's book, Kickstart Your Graphic Design Career, and it went live on 21 November.

Bronson proved that it can be done to write and self publish your book, even with tight deadlines and a work overload.

If you are considering self publishing a book, let me assure you, IT IS POSSIBLE, and can be done!

Kickstart Your Graphic Design Career
My own progress changed slightly. The side project I mentioned a while ago actually took center stage. My Success Journal went live on 16 November. I've used a success journal for many years and can say I get a lot of benefit from it. That's where the idea came up to create My Success Journal and hopefully others will benefit from it.

My priority #1 book - DSPB has taken a bit of a back seat as result of my workload. Although I've only worked on DSPB now and then, the writing of the book is actually close to finished. As from January, it will again become my #1 priority.

My Success Journal

What I Saw Online

A great interview with Seth Godin, where he talks about books, business and life.

Seth Godin Interview

If you're planning on self publishing your book, this article may be useful...

Formatting Basics

We writers generally don't like planning. But planning a book can really be useful, especially for self publishers. This site offers super advice, and templates to help you create your own writer's plan.

The Writer's Plan

Still on the fence whether to self-publish or not? Maybe these stats will help you to take action.

Self Publishing Stats

If you've just entered the exciting world of self publishing, and wondering how to get more book sales, these 10 questions may help.

10 Questions

SBI! offers a practical suite of tools to start and run your own online business. If you have even a slight talent with writing, or have a way with words, SBI! can work for you. If you've been thinking along these lines, SBI! have a Buy One, Get One Free special running at present.

Your Own Online Business

Wishing you the best that can be, and trust you have an enjoyable holiday season.

Tuesday, 23 October 2012

All in day's work...

It's been somewhat busy around here.

Book design projects, e-covers, and my own writing. Unfortunately my self publishing diary ended up on the short end of the stick.

Sunday there will be a full post here (and some news :))

Wishing you only the best that can be.

Tuesday, 2 October 2012

Send to Kindle for PC

NOTE: A technical glitch yesterday... couldn't post.

This is something I felt I must share – good service is so rare these days.

Without a doubt, Amazon Support is outstanding.

When the Amazon Send to Kindle for PC app launched (feels like ages ago), I immediately grabbed it. It installed without a glitch, and I used it many times – no problem. After a re-format of my PC, I didn’t re-install the Send to Kindle app (mainly because I forgot about it).

Last week I remembered the Send to Kindle app, and downloaded the latest version.

Hiccup. When I tried to install it, I kept getting a network error. I re-installed, re-booted… to no avail.

I decided to contact Amazon Support. What a pleasant surprise!

Two e-mails between myself and the Help desk, and I was advised to use the Amazon “Chat” feature on the Support site.

Yesterday morning (yes, Sunday), I logged into the Chat feature, and sure enough there was someone online to help me.

It must have taken about 7 to 10 minutes, and my Send to Kindle for PC app was installed and working.

Hats off to Amazon Support!

By the way, if you create Kindle ebooks, using the Send to Kindle app is super to review your Kindle ebook before uploading to Amazon.

Send to Kindle for PC
Send to Kindle for Mac

Diary Update

Nothing exciting to report this week... well, nothing exciting in the sense of an interesting read (I suppose). Spent the whole of last week working on Chapters 2 & 3. Adding, removing, moving around, creating diagrams... basic writing stuff, I suppose. I’m happy with the progress I’ve made on my book the past 3 weeks.

I received new order for Kindle ebook design, so most of my time this week will be spent on that.

What I saw online...


Penguin Acquires Self-publishing Success Story – Rebecca Donovan

“Penguin has acquired UK and Commonwealth rights in The Breathing series by Rebecca Donovan. Rights were acquired by Lindsey Heaven, Senior Fiction Editor, from Alex Slater on behalf of Erica Spellman Silverman at Trident Media Group.”


Can authors ever have enough exposure? Came across this last week: Novelnook.

This is what they say: “At Novelnook, we strive to offer the best services to our self-published eBook authors – for free. We also have constructed a community that fosters social networking and interaction.”

Sounds great.

And something that caught my eye, and sounds really super… authors will get paid immediately, and don’t have to wait for monthly payments. Apparently, you get paid as soon as the transaction is done, paid directly into your PayPal account.

I haven’t used the service yet. If you have, I’d really like to hear how you found Novelnook.

When should you start promoting your book? Very interesting comment from Seth Godin…

"The best time to start promoting your book is three years before it comes out. Three years to build a reputation, build a permission asset, build a blog, build a following, build credibility, and build the connections you’ll need later."

I wish you terrific and tremendous success!

Monday, 24 September 2012

It was a quiet week

From busy, busy, busy to quiet... that's how things are in this crazy business, I suppose :o)

Actually, it was a bit of a lazy week (and yesterday I took the family out for the day).

I got Chapter 1 back from my tester - after looking at the comments, I had a brainstorming session with my son. I love brainstorming... their is so much value in this type of exercise.

As result of our brainstorming, I came to the decision to re-structure my book slightly (a neat benefit of self-publishing, I think). There will now be a little re-work to be done, but it will end up being a better book.

Also, as result of our brainstorming, the self publishing checklist I had is also going to be a  better document. The self-publishing checklist is going to be used as a promotional tool, and I believe it's now going to be more beneficial, and will offer the reader more value.

Although I haven't made a firm decision yet, I think my deadline for Book #1 will be February 2013.

Last week I worked on a side project... it's a small project I started in January (been working on it now and then), and it should be available in November. All will be revealed when it's available.

What I saw online...

Kindle is not the only player on the block. Kobo Writing Life now offers authors the opportunity to self publish on the Kobo device.

That's a wrap for this issue of my self publishing diary.

I wish you terrific and tremendous success!


Tuesday, 18 September 2012

Busy week

It was a busy, busy, busy week. Amazing how time flies when you're having fun :o)

I've been busy with the book design project, had a few e-cover designs, and worked on my book.

I'm anxiously awaiting the feedback from my tester on Chapter 1.  Made corrections (and additions) to Chapters 2 & 3 - should get the drafts wrapped up next week (depending on when corrections come back from clients).

Where I'm at with book #1:

  • Chapter 1 draft done and with my tester.
  • Chapters 2 & 3 ready to take to author's draft (then to tester).
  • Chapter 4 ready to be checked by me.
  • Chapter 5 author's draft to be written.
And then there's a lot of planning to be done iro promotion.

Here's an idea I came up with. I thought of sharing interesting tidbits I come across in my travels through cyberspace (yes, I also do a lot of reading, in between work). These will be things about self publishing, independent publishing, book design, cover design, etc.

What I saw online...

If you're sitting on the fence, still thinking about whether you should self publish or not, this article may be useful...

25 Reasons to Self-Publish, Part I

What's your opinion?

Here is something that's been debated for a long time (feels like forever), and even today there's no conclusive proof: justified or ragged right text.

Actually, some years ago research was done and it was found that text that's ragged right helps with memory retention (sadly, I can't remember where the research was done).

What made me think of this?

Last week I saw someone (again) say that Word was not suitable for designing a book. The main reason? The hyphenation feature in Word is terrible when justifying text. To be honest, I can't disagree with that.

My questions to you: Do you consciously notice the difference between justified and raged right text? Do you feel Word is a bad choice to design your book (or ebook)?

I would love to hear what your thoughts are.

I wish you terrific and tremendous success!


Sunday, 9 September 2012

Very Good Week

I’m very happy with the progress I made this week (and posting here on time, to boot).

words of wisdom
Received a new book design project, and it’s going well.

After racking my brain over Chapter 1, I decided to scrap it and rewrote the whole chapter. Now it goes to my tester.

I finished the drafts of Chapter 3 and 4. Although these are rough drafts, the type of content means there will be little to do to get it to the first draft.

I read Dana Lynn Smith’s Virtual Book Tour Magic. In this month I’m going to start putting my promotion plan together for Book #1. There’s a lot to do, and it must fit in between the writing.

I eventually managed to update my testimonials page:

And then a bit of cool news… my friend Larry Brooks posted about a new movie about a writer… can’t wait to see it:

Nothing further was done on Book #2.

Monday, 3 September 2012

Made Good Progress

I missed last Sunday's post... no excuse... I was distracted with other things.

At least I made good progress with my writing, both my book and my site. And I also did a lot of reading.

Just to try and make things a little clearer, I thought I'd refer to my book by number... so the book I've been talking about up to now is Book #1 (this will be until I reveal the title, anyway).

Book #1.  I worked on Chapter 3, and my target is to get it finished by the end of this week. I managed to finalize Chapter 2, and will be sending to my "testers" to be checked for completeness. After I just have 2 chapters to finalize.

I also managed to make notes of things to add to Chapter 1, and want to try and wrap that up next week.

I updated my FAQ page... - if you have any questions that aren't answered there, please let me know below, and I'll get the answers added to my FAQ page.

I started working on the outline of Book #2... I tend to find it boring to work on only one book in the early stages. I seem to do the writing on one book, and the outlining on another - keeps the old grey matter alive. But, I do get to a point where I focus on just one, and get it wrapped up. This is probably something I picked up in the many years of technical writing, where it's very unusual to work on only one manual/document at a time.

Oh, and I started having a look at Scrivener, the writing software. Looks good so far.

That's a wrap for this week.

I wish you the best of success.

Sunday, 19 August 2012

A Quick Background

Hello my Friend

I originally started my self publishing diary on my site,, but thought it more practical to have it on a blog (actually, I’ve been wanting to start a blog for a while).  I made some changes, work wise, and have freed up some time, so hopefully I’ll get around to blogging regularly.

Yes, there’s still some work to be done here – it’s only the basic blog, so please bear with me.

Ok, so what can you expect here?

It’s my goal to share everything I do with the writing, self-publishing, and promotion of my fourth self published book.  As I’m quite a way with the writing of my book, there’s not going to be a lot about the actual writing (hopefully still something to be of value).  This is actually a look into how someone who has a regular 9-to-5 job does it.

The status of my book as of today…

The “author’s draft” of the first four chapters are written. Chapter 5 author’s draft should be written very soon (end August/early September).

I’ve had Chapter 1 reviewed by two people, and have started looking at the rewrites.

Chapter 2 will be finalized this week (author’s draft), and then it’s going for review.  No doubt there will be rewriting, and I write the author’s drafts very quickly, with only a little editing/reworking.  The reason I get the author’s draft reviewed is to see if I have the ideas down clearly, and if there’s anything more needed.

It’s my goal to post here every Sunday, so please check back every week, or better still, subscribe to the RSS feed.  Many thanks.

Oh, what’s the book about?

That will be revealed in due course :o)

I wish you the best of success.

Sunday, 12 August 2012

Hello and Thank You

Hello my Friend

Thank you for visiting my blog.

What are you going to find here?

This is my self publishing journey... or rather my self publishing diary.  I'm going to record everything I do in writing and self publishing my fourth book. In addition I'll also be adding bits 'n pieces I find on the incredible world of self publishing, independent publishing & the book world in general.

I trust you will find it worth your while, and please do leave a comment.

I wish you the best of success.