As An Aspiring Author,...

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Re: As An Aspiring Author,...

Postby Kellemora » 27 Sep 2012, 12:21

FWIW: I live INSIDE the City Limits of Knoxville, which isn't saying much as they have annexed nearly all of Knox County and Double our Taxes, and cut back from the services we used to have through the county.

They charge a lot more here in taxes than we paid in St. Louis County back home, where nearly everything was free! Here, nothing is free and usually 20 years behind the rest of the world!
We don't even have storm sewers or natural gas here, yet our sewer bills are outlandishly high.

I do know a few tricks to use my computer with my cell phone, but only one computer at a time. And I need to have at least a minimum of three on-line in order to do my job properly and efficiently.
I could do it with one computer, but it would take considerably longer.

I had very few complaints with Comcast for years, but the past few months, service has been horrible.
They've raised my connection fee from 55 to 85 bucks, and it was shortly after that, I began having mega problems with their service.

Maybe it will straighten out again. At least we are hoping!

TTUL
Gary
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Re: As An Aspiring Author,...

Postby Ice.Maiden » 04 Oct 2012, 16:37

Is the $85 for a new line Gary?
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Re: As An Aspiring Author,...

Postby Kellemora » 05 Oct 2012, 09:32

NO, it's my Internet Cable Connection ONLY, no TV, no Voice, etc.

When we dropped TV it jumped from 55 up to 68 and has been going up each month since.

I might as well switch to Business Class which is their highest speed Internet, plus Voice for $89.90 per month, locked in for two years.

FWIW: My AT&T Landline has been going up a full $1.00 per month BASE CHARGE every month for the past seven months!
Which of course then makes all those exorbitant taxes go up along with it.
And the only calls I get on my landline phone are Card Service International wanting to reduce the interest rate on my 0% interest No Annual Fee credit cards, about 4 calls per day, and some dude trying to sell ocean front property in Arizona.

Well, I needs to get back to writing. I thought I would get caught up while the frau was in Florida for a week, I sorta did, but then the amount I do at work escalated also, cutting into my time for my own work.

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Re: As An Aspiring Author,...

Postby kg » 30 Dec 2012, 02:33


Hmmm...I see that it's been better than three months since I made a post to this thread, so it's high time I update, especially with such momentous news as I bear!

I have called it on the editing...I have a "Final Release Candidate," awaiting formatting to send to various and sundry agencies. I've compiled the whole thing into both .odt and .pdf format, consisting of my book cover, cover page, copyright page, author's notes, Glossary, and of course, the novel itself. Now all I have to do is reformat it in various permutations for submissions.

The novel has ended up at 109,400 (and some change) words, excluding author's notes and Glossary. With them, it's just above 110k. I decided that the appendices I was considering were overkill, and explained a few critical terms in the author's notes, which should be sufficient to allay confusion engendered by some parts of the narrative and dialogue. When I have my first couple of books in the series written, those notes won't be necessary, as the reader will come to the novel with a more detailed understanding of what I describe.

I've been working on this novel for just a bit over a year. I first started writing it around the middle of December of 2011, as indicated on page two of this thread. Though I'm sure it varies, that seems to me an acceptable amount of time...not too much, and not too little.

At any rate, now comes work of a different sort. More research, changes of formatting, assuring the finished documents are correct for the formats I wish to publish in. Smashwords has an exacting standard, but that's because it parses the submission into so many different formats. I've checked out Amazon, and they require a different document for their "meatgrinder"...an html document. I haven't checked out Barnes & Noble yet. I'm sure they have different requirements yet, though I could hope it would be a straight ePub document.

I've recently found out there is a FOSS epub editor available (for Linux, yet!), called Sigil. It's supposed to be quite the editing tool. I just need to convert my work to epub (using the Calibre converter), then I can fine tune it with Sigil. It's supposed to be really good.

So there it is. I'm poised on the brink of publication, and ready for my humble submission to go viral and relegate me to the lofty realms of Rowling, Jordan, and a host of other famous Science Fiction and Fantasy authors, up in the nose-bleed section of the New York Times Bestseller's list! :lol:
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Re: As An Aspiring Author,...

Postby Yogi » 30 Dec 2012, 07:40

Thanks for the updates Glenn. This has got to be an exciting time in your career as author. You have all our support and best wishes for a successful launch.

I'm pretty sure you are telling us that you are going to self-publish your work, although I admit to a high degree of ignorance in the world of book writing. I may not correctly understand what I'm reading here. I have little doubt that you can easily acquire a following, and perhaps go viral in certain circles. I'm also sure you say it with tongue in cheek, but, I don't know if anyone who has been on the NYT Bestsellers List has ever been self-published.
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Re: As An Aspiring Author,...

Postby Kellemora » 30 Dec 2012, 13:16

Congratulations Glenn!

Editing is always the hardest part of writing and takes the longest.

FWIW Yogi - When I checked the NYT list on December 1, there were 4 self-published eBooks on the list, two were sitting near the top, at #2 and #4, that's WAY Up There on the NYT! A couple of the printed versions may have been self-published also.
The times are changing, FAST!

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Re: As An Aspiring Author,...

Postby kg » 01 Jan 2013, 02:52


Best sellers are best sellers, no matter the venue. I'd be extremely gratified just making the list...I'm not greedy! :P

Making a showing on such an august and well known list engenders further recognition (and coincidentally, further sales), let alone the 'ego stroking' of being able to say, "Oh yes...my novel is on the New York Times Best Seller List. And you are...? I always try to maintain a connection with 'the little people'." :lol:

Aren't I a piece of work? :mrgreen:
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Re: As An Aspiring Author,...

Postby Ice.Maiden » 01 Jan 2013, 09:49

Yes, but you're funny with it! : )
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Re: As An Aspiring Author,...

Postby Kellemora » 01 Jan 2013, 11:04

Hey Glenn, I noticed Mark brought direct uploads of ePub format to Smashwords.
You still have to go the DOC route, then Replace the Meatgrinders ePub with your own copy, if it's better that is.
PDF may be coming soon too, for those who want the look and feel of a real book they developed.

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Re: As An Aspiring Author,...

Postby kg » 01 Jan 2013, 13:11

Kellemora wrote:Hey Glenn, I noticed Mark brought direct uploads of ePub format to Smashwords.


That's very interesting! I've seen some novels that were, shall we say, "less than pretty," and yet others whose formatting were so very nice! For instance, I'm re-reading The Inheritance Cycle, and noticed that the novels seem to have Justification. Justification makes paragraphs look more professional, and makes for a better read (to me).

If I'm able to make a better epub copy through something like Sigil, Smashwords' acceptance of an author's direct submission of an epub version would be a big plus to me. Looks like I may have more work to do, learning both Calibre conversion to generate an epub (though I guess I could let Smashwords to it for me), then Sigil to do the actual editing. And since I have a Nook eReader, I have the perfect vehicle for testing.

Kellemora wrote:PDF may be coming soon too, for those who want the look and feel of a real book they developed.


That would be excellent, since I've already generated such a document...several times throughout the writing process, as a matter of fact. I would allow an author to include his or her own fonts and formatting; as you say, preserving the intended "look and feel."

Kudos to Smashwords for allowing the ability to format an author's own editions. Meatgrinder's abilities are understandably limited, since it converts to so many different formats. For Meatgrinder to be made to handle so many different levels of complexity would bloat the code out of all reason, and would increase the possibility of corruption of most or all of the output formats.

Much better to allow the author to do so on a submission by submission basis, or hire it done, should he or she so desire. There are almost as many different concepts of ideal presentation of a novel as there are authors, and this affords them the opportunity to publish it as they conceive it, rather than be limited by the venue, traditional as well as ePublication.
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Re: As An Aspiring Author,...

Postby Kellemora » 02 Jan 2013, 12:38

I've hit a few eBooks where the author added links in the back to download a Better PDF version from their websites.
I did on two of them, but others I tried would not accept the download code. But perhaps I used the wrong code?

I'm thinking about doing that myself, having a PDF formatted like a Published book, so it looks better than a churned out one.
Some day, when I'm far along enough to consider it.

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Re: As An Aspiring Author,...

Postby kg » 02 Jan 2013, 22:18


Easy enough to do. Libre Office has the ability to export a very nice PDF document from its native format, and I would assume it's the same with Open Office. All you have to do is assemble the document with everything included and displayed the way you desire, and the resulting PDF document will look just like the ODT document.

I was looking for a PDF editor a while back, but gave that up. It's easy enough to make changes to the ODT document and re-export it. It just takes a few seconds, and the results seem to be excellent.
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Re: As An Aspiring Author,...

Postby Kellemora » 03 Jan 2013, 14:16

Yeppers, it IS better to work with the native file and then export to PDF, as PDF editors do not reexport the same way as newly generated PDF files. Compare it to all the extraneous stuff added to DOC files with each change and edit. They become bloated and begin making internal mistakes.

I never did like the way msWORD handled graphics, causing them to jump all over the place.
Took me a long time to figure out why. Windows uses the printer settings of the printer attached to your computer to define its margins. The document may look perfect on that computer, but move it to another computer with a different printer and it blows the whole thing to pieces.
This is why when I was submitting my work to the printer for those many tri-folds I used to make, they always insisted that I set all margins to make 7 inch by 9 inch printable area. Only then did the documents come out at their end as expected.

Many now accept ODF or ODT format, because they don't have to worry about things jumping around. What you see is what you get on any computer. Or should I say, what they print is what you submitted, without errors or moved images.

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Re: As An Aspiring Author,...

Postby kg » 03 Jan 2013, 14:51


Hmm...I wonder how Word would handle it if there were no printer connected to the computer? I don't have a printer connected to my laptop, so that would be an interesting experiment, were I to have a copy of Word to experiment with (which I don't).
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Re: As An Aspiring Author,...

Postby kg » 03 Jan 2013, 20:05


Well that's just peachy! :bleh:

After battling with registering with the USOC website over "acceptable password requirements," I finally got registered and started through the submission process. I hadn't got far before I was presented with the message:

            OFFLINE

The Copyright eCO System is currently offline undergoing regularly scheduled maintenance. The hours for offline maintenance are from 10:00 PM Saturday to 6:00 AM Sunday (Eastern Time). The system will be restored to normal operations at 6:00 AM.


Uh, excuse me? I believe this is Thursday, unless I'm mistaken. :think:

I know what it is, though. Being a governmental agency, it resides where all the rest of the governmental agencies reside...

There's a signpost up ahead;
you have just entered,

    THE TWILIGHT ZONE


Ah well, I'll try again tomorrow, or Saturday (before 6:00 PM, to be sure!).
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Re: As An Aspiring Author,...

Postby Kellemora » 04 Jan 2013, 09:13

Oh I hear ya loud n clear there Glenn!

I've been trying to get into a particular government web site since December 23rd.
Get the exact same message, only with the department name changed.
By phone I found out they shut-down Friday, December 21 and will be closed until Monday, January 7th.
That was the problem with their on-line service, but they didn't change their message.

The frau took off work early to stop at the DMV. She swung by there to read the sign for the closing time, then skipped lunch so she could take off early. At 50 minutes before closing time, they had already locked the doors and pulled the shades down. She squatted down and looked under the shades to see three people working at their desks, so she began banging on the door. They didn't pay a bit of attention until she began hitting it so hard they thought the glass was going to break. A lady comes up to the door, pulls the blinds to the side and says "We Are Closed." She informs the lady of the current time, and when the posted closing time is. The lady just flopped the blinds back over and walked away.

I went with her the next time she went. She pointed out the lady, who happened to be the stupidvisor.
I don't get mad, I get even!
After the frau finished her business, I held the door WIDE OPEN for her to walk out; and while so doing, I filled their lock with an entire bottle of Super Glue, not the cheap dollar stuff either, the real McCoy. Seven Dollar, gap filling, "Hot Stuff"!
I think the stupidvisor will be getting home from work LATE that night, and hope she missed dinner because of it too, hi hi.....

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Re: As An Aspiring Author,...

Postby kg » 04 Jan 2013, 18:18


"Oh, you're closed? Well, let me assist you with that!" :lol:

You know, that makes sense! It's interesting that I registered with the site and got partway through the registration process before I got that message, though. They might have taken down the important part of the site (eCo) for the holidays. I'm going to try again tomorrow (before 10 PM EST!), and if I get the same message, I'll know I'm going to have to wait for a few days.

Not surprising that they didn't change the website. Reading the instructions and tutorials, I noticed that they still list Netscape as a browser, though they do mention Firefox...Firefox 2! I guess they figure that's good enough...anyone not smart enough to figure things out with the more modern browsers shouldn't be using electronic filing anyway. Just send in a printed manuscript and be done with it.

This all raises an interesting observation. More and more, it behooves one to familiarize oneself with things computer and Internet. So many things are done that way these days, and many things are converting from paper to electronic (read, computer) only. My father continually struggles with this issue (he's 86), and often says he wants to go back to the '50s where he belongs.
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Re: As An Aspiring Author,...

Postby Kellemora » 05 Jan 2013, 14:15

The frau and I went to get our passports this morning.
Talk about a major fiasco!
I was at the downtown post office a few months ago and wrote down the hours for their passport office. 8:30to11AM.
Went their today, they are now closed on Saturdays. But a worker in the back told us to go to our local branch.
OK, so we drive back home to our local branch. Mon to Fri ONLY. The guy behind the counter says, the north branch is open today.
We drive up there, 8 miles, BIG SIGN says Passports, Mon-Fri 8:30AMto1PM.Saturday 9AM to 2PM. We take a number and sit down along with three other couples. After about half an hour, a mail clerk calls over to us. Hey Folks; Nobody here today trained to do Passports. He directs us to another branch umpteen miles away. Everybody leaves mumbling, hi hi......
I keep a phone book in my car, the frau looks up the next post office closest to where we were, still another 7 more miles away.
The fellow says, yes, we do passports, to make sure the frau asks. Is the person trained to do that there? And since it was getting close to 11AM she asks. What time do you close the Passport handling. The man says, I'm the one who handles that and will be here and open until 2PM.
We skipped lunch and drove straight there, arriving at 11:22AM. The guy left for lunch and would not be back until 12:30.
We decided to wait so we would be second in line. Around 11:45, the couple in front of us decides to leave to go eat.
12:30 passes, then 12:45, at 12:50 the mail clerk says to us. "Jim is back, he'll be with you shortly, he had a flat tire and is washing up." The couple that left to eat come back in and sit down. Jim appears and calls their number. They had NOTHING filled out as required, and even had to call home twice to get information needed for the forms. 1:20PM OUR TURN. We had everything filled out and ready to go. So it didn't take him too long to handle it. Nonetheless, it was 1:35 when we paid and left the counter. He closes the top half of the Dutch Door which exposed the word closed, with three other couples sitting there waiting. One of them yells, hey, it's not 2PM yet and YOU were late. He hollers over the counter, just wait, I'll get to you in a minute. We shot out the door and came straight home. Forgetting to stop for lunch. The frau is heating up our lunch as I'm typing this.
And that has been my morning!
Don't know if it's just because I live in East Podunk now, but back home we never had these problems with the PO or the DMV.
Down here, government offices are like a three ring circus! The people that work there only know how to do one thing, and the people you NEED to handle something are never there. Even though their advertising and signs say they are OPEN.

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Re: As An Aspiring Author,...

Postby kg » 06 Jan 2013, 00:21


Hmm...I wonder if there's someone who offers a discount on large quantity purchases of superglue? :think: :P

Well, I was going to check out the USOC website, but with current events, I decided to put it off until next weekend. Besides, I'm burned out and needed to take a break. I haven't taken a break from research, though.

I'm currently studying some material concerning promoting self-published novels and have found a few really good resources. One of those I'll be registering with is Goodreads. Goodreads has been been touted as a very good resource for authors as well as those looking for reading material in their favored genre.

I suppose I'm going to be forced to open a Twitter account, as well. There are resources I didn't realize there, as well as tools for it that I never knew existed. It's touted as one of the most important promotion tools by every book I've read. There are a couple of others I'm considering, but for now, one step at a time.
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Re: As An Aspiring Author,...

Postby Kellemora » 06 Jan 2013, 10:30

My imaginary self is on Goodreads, Pinterest, Twitter, Listorious, etc. Not on Farcebook though! However, I do have a presence there otherwise.
You know the key to find my imaginary self.
I'll be glad to help get you and your book noticed!

TTUL
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