Our writing group, the Whittlesey Wordsmiths, are in the process of gathering together a second anthology to self-publish.
For last year’s collection, I downloaded a template from Amazon and pasted everything into it, only finding as I went along that certain features of the template would need to be tweaked.
As the volume progressed (or not) I researched what was happening in the background of said template to find out why things were going wrong. Then I applied, too early, tweaks that would have been better left until the last minute.
(Much of what I learned then may need to be re-learned for this book – it’s my age).
Once satisfied with the print version, we uploaded it, congratulated ourselves, and had copies printed off by a local printer.
This is cheaper than ordering printed copies from Amazon as long as you can afford to invest in a substantial number of copies.
There were twelve of us wanting copies for extended families and friends; the remainder were sold at U3A meetings (after sending the obligatory copies to the British Library and other deposit libraries – see https://www.bl.uk/legal-deposit for this legal requirement).
I then re-formatted everything to upload as an e-book, which involved removing headers, footers, blank pages, page numbers, line breaks, page breaks, justification, and page-end tweaks (to eliminate weird justification).
I’ll deal with such difficulties (again) when I come to them. When I do, I’ll share them on this blog.
We learn from our mistakes
This time around, I’m starting with the e-book file. We only have to arrange it in a meaningful order, proofread and tweak it before getting involved with print copy issues, such as headers and footers and the Table Of Contents. (MSWord’s automated TOC isn’t geared towards each chapter having a different author.)