Friday, December 27, 2013

Publishing with Createspace - What I Did Horribly Wrong!

When I found a company willing to work by email and upload to publish my novel, I was very excited. There are some definite pluses to createspace.com.  However, in my excitement to publish, I proofed with their electronic proof application.  This had worked wonderfully and cut down the time to have my children's book, "How the Dragons Got Their Colors", to the shelf quicker.  I do not recommend this to novelists.  Order the hard copy proof!

The book launched electronically and when my copy of A Blue Dragon's Geas: Outcast arrived, I was so very excited.  My illustrator, Heather Scoggins, had done a beautiful job for me. I loved the concept she chose for the blue dragon.  Later, when I sat down, I was horrified.  On the top of every page, my name is spelled wrong, an error not caught in the header.  My fault.  I stared at it in disbelief.  I have a long name but who would have guessed I would spell my own name wrong.  I got out a highlighter just in case.

As I read through the book, I found where I had left out the word 'that'.  This is a common problem for me as I hear it in my head when I read back and something I watch for in edits.  I found homonyms that spellchecker and I both did not catch.  I had an editor, but he missed it too. Other little errors jumped off that printed page.  I had gone through the electronic version slowly and carefully but there is something different about holding a book in your hand.  I really suggest you order the proof and sit down with a highlighter.

Advantages of Createspace.
Optional packages for publicity and help.
Easy upload system that moves your book straight onto Amazon shelves.
Easy conversion to kindle option at no charge.
No upfront costs.
Good payment systems.
Great commission options

Disadvantages:
If you are on a no frills budget, you are on your own for editing and proofing.
It is easy to miss small errors in electronic print.
No big company helping you get your book on the shelf.
The amount of time spent in having to proof and reproof construction errors with only one set of eyes.

I do recommend this company for any author breaking in.  I have learned a lot having to do it on my own. However, as I finish reading my novel with a highlighter, I know a second edition will be uploaded soon.  For those of you that got a first edition with my name spelled wrong, shelve that copy.  If I ever get rich and famous after I die, who knows, it might be worth something.  At this moment, there are only 15 out there.