It's been two years of hard work but I'm nearly ready to publish my memoir. Proof-reading was a bit tricky with blurred vision from side-effects of medications after surgery.
I've been plodding along with the finalising stages, including proof-reading a printed manuscript, then updating them in my digital manuscript. I keep wanting to tweak this and that but it gets to a point where it's 'done.' Tonight, I exported to a pdf for the print version of the book.
Last night, I applied for my ISBN numbers. They're free in New Zealand and I think it's best to have your own (unless you don't mind being tied to one distributor). New Zealand issued ones need to be used fairly quickly, so now I'm committed to publishing in September 2023.
New Zealand requires the ISBNs for all formats to be stated on and in each book.
All going well, I could have my memoir published (as print-on-demand and e-book) within a week.
Some people are snobby and see independent publishing as inferior. I chose independent publishing from the beginning because:
Marketing is the most annoying part of the process, for me. It's harder for indie authors but I observe those who get 'traditionally' published still need to do most of their own marketing.
Preparing for ebook conversion
I will be converting to an EPUB file that I can use with several distributors. The conversion has always been a bit of a headache, when I've done it (mainly getting the Chapters showing up correctly).
I've prepared the file, getting ready for conversion (I just want to add one more image, the back cover of the book).
Some of the changes going from a file for print compared to file for digital (ebook):
I've already played with a mockup of my cover design, trying out ideas. Now that I have the final page numbers, based on the trim size I chose, I could generate a template to design my cover over the top of.
I find the cover design stage to be quite fun, as I enjoy visual arts and layout. Of course, you could have a graphic designer do this for you. Just like you could hire someone to do any other stage, such as proof-reading. Only I know what I want to keep, so editing is something I had to do myself.
The book cover will be fun to do, as my mind has been busy with tedious detail stuff with editing and proof-reading.
There are different specifications and dimensions for the ebook cover and the print cover, on the KDP website (KPD publishes to Amazon). The same ebook cover can be used for other distributors. I choose to publish to Amazon first, because they offer a promotion option.
Anyway, there's a lot involved and I might write a guide on how to do some of this stuff, for keen writers. With some tips on how to tell your story (as I've written both memoir and semiautobiographical fiction). My next book will explore fiction more.
Anyway, my memoir, Bipolar Courage: Are You Sure You're Not Autistic? is expected to be out within two weeks. Possibly within a week. It's about some of the behind-the-scenes drama during my time in advocacy. With focus on a complicated friendship with 'Maxwell', an autistic guy.