I’m sure most of you have heard the news by now, but if you haven’t, Amazon has announced some major changes to its KDP Print program. Only two days after I was telling people in this blog’s comments that I wouldn’t even consider moving to KDP Print from CreateSpace until Amazon addressed its two most glaring issues, the company announced it had. On top of that, it addressed my major problem with CreateSpace, thus making it a whole lot more likely that I will soon be moving over.
Problem #1: No Physical Proofs (Solved)
The first problem with KDP Print concerned its means of proofing your manuscript. Well, you can now order printed proofs from KDP. Proofs allow you to review a physical copy of your draft paperback prior to publication.
Note, however, that the process is a bit more cumbersome than the one CreateSpace uses. Specifically, here’s how you…
Hey Guys! Wow. It’s been a long time. I miss you all!
*waves to readers and sits on virtual sofa*
This article started out extremely long but then I realized how necessary it was to keep this short and simple.There is so much information out here for Independent Authors and so many made-up commandments it isn’t funny. Everyone has an opinion on what the new author should and shouldn’t do. Everyone has a piece of advice to give or stones to throw. If you move this way you are doing it wrong and if you move that way you are still doing it wrong. There are more laws for the Self-Publisher than there are in the bible. There is something to say about everything. This is why I humbly advise each person to experience everything for themselves and to do their own research. Sometimes you don’t need to…
Today started with a lot more traffic than usually. I still have no idea how it comes that I have been held up by traffic jam all over the place. It already began when I left home to go to work. Instead of the regular 35 minutes, it took me almost 50 minutes to get to the office.
However, I accepted that, started my work, knowing I had to leave the office early enough to drive across the city and meet the legal Department at the other building.
Unfortunately another traffic jam came up and even trying to hurry up I was still unable to avoid being late. I hate being late. I consider this impolite towards the people I meet. And I don’t want to treat people like they don’t matter.
From the parking lot I ran to the entrance and arrived precisely at 10.03 am, with a three minutes delay.
One of the receptionists welcomed me, the other one listened. We introduced each other and I told them who I have a meeting with and that I’m already running late. One of the receptionists got on the phone – and I expected she would inform the legal department about my arrival – but far off! She had something different to do and I was waiting… finally the young paralegal showed up and… told me off for being 15 minutes late – which was kind of funny since she arrived at the lobby at 10.10 am.
Then she told me, that they never wait for longer than 10 minutes and they can’t see me anymore that day, even though we had planned half an hour for this introduction…
Then she got up, turned around and left, sending me out as I was a little girl who just had performed one of the seven mortal sins. I felt like I was kicked into my face.
On my way out I was that pissed I hyperventilated.
By the time I arrived back in my office I told it to one of my colleagues and then decided to send an email to the Manager of the Legal Department, telling him how things went, apologizing for the massive delay of three minutes and telling him that for the last 20 years I haven’t been treated as despicably and condescendingly as they treated me today.
So far I didn’t get anything back.
However… I am curious if I actually do hear from them.
That’s my day so far… can it get any better? Haha.
Author Kristen Lamb writes about conflict and why it’s important for our stories. Thank you very much Kristen. I’m learning so much reading your blog and I’m convinced I’m not the only one.
Conflict is the core ingredient required for story. It is the magical elixir with the raw power to transform a story we think we’ve heard a million times before into something wholly unique and mesmerizing. FYI, there are no new stories, only new ways of telling the same stories. Just getting that out of the way.
A Thousand Acres is basically King Lear on an Iowa farm, and Avatar is Pocahontas in Space. I could give a zillion more examples but won’t.
In fairness, this makes our job simpler. We really don’t want to create a story no one has ever heard before. Not only because it’s pretty much impossible to do in the first place, but it’s also highly risky even if we managed to pull it off. Why?
Because the story ‘never before told’ cannot possibly resonate emotionally. Humans have no emotional touchpoint for something they’ve never experienced…ever.
Resonance is Critical
Love gone wrong? Betrayal? Messed up family? Righting wrongs of the past? Clearing one’s name from being falsely accused? Rebuilding after a loss? Finally earning approval, love, or acceptance? Impacts of abuse or addiction?
… and still, we all do it, right? I’m not the exception to the rule either. Often I catch myself judging a person I don’t know because I don’t like her jacket. But I don’t know what happened to her that her jacket looks as ragged as it does.
But let’s stay within the literary world. Like so many other writers and readers, I love spending time in bookstores. I browse through the shelves and aisles, and occasionally I pick one, turn it around and start reading the blurb on the back.
My eyes fly over the shelves, and once in a while, they are caught by a particularly attractive and intriguing book cover. If I don’t like the cover, I don’t even bother reading a blurb, means I might miss a few good books, just because my eye isn’t attracted to the books’ cover.
Over the years I saw a few very interesting and eye-catching covers, and by a couple, I was quite fascinated.
Now, these five here, are only a few that impressed me and my eye in particular. To some of you, they might be weird, sad or even boring. This blog post and these covers are my taste.
I love how the designer mixes color and the trace of antique and ancient. It’s not often we discover a new book with an ‘old’ cover.
Cover designer: Peter Mendelsund
I love the colorful simplicity of the book cover. It seems to be one simple compass needle, but I was drawn in when I saw this cover.
Bob Giusti (illustration)
Amy Hill (lettering)
This I call a perfect symbiosis between illustration and lettering. It can’t get any simpler than this, any darker, any more impressive – and any scarier.
Designer: Na Kim
I cannot even tell whether this book cover is ‘intriguing’ or repelling… but it definitely is fascinating. And in combination with this book title it has a lot to say.
Cover designer: Anne Jordan
The cover caught my eye immediately. Why would a reader and writer like me not be intrigued by a turning page? I briefly looked at the book and found that I had to add it to my growing pile of books I need to read.
Are there covers you like? And I know, I got a lot to learn and many people to meet, cover designers amongst them. Who do you know, being a cover designer or illustrator and designed the perfect cover for your book?
You might remember that this book was a Kindle Scout candidate and it performed well lasting on the Hot List for 209 of 720 hours or some part of 11 out of 30 days with over 4,000 views.
Here is a blurb about the book:
Intelligence analyst Jake Balrich boards his Monday morning flight, as he has so many times, for routine field work. When the plane lands, a passenger fails to wake up. Jake soon realizes that the death was not accidental and is part of a murderous plot that will have Jake running for his life as he struggles with an unknown enemy that seems to guess his every move.
Blood Match is a thriller that examines the desire for gaining power with little regard for the human lives that are affected.
Following the closure of CreateSpace’s eStore, Amazon has now delivered a further blow to the company. This makes it all more likely that all of CreateSpace operations will eventually be rolled into KDP Print.
In a surprising statement, Amazon announced its decision to move CreateSpace out of paid author services such as professional design and editing:
After a thorough review of our service offerings, we’ve made the decision to discontinue Createspace’s paid professional editing, design, and marketing services. We will work closely with impacted employees through this transition to help them find new roles within the company or assist them with pursuing opportunities outside the company.
Even though most Indie authors I know prefer to use their own resources for such services, CreateSpace’s design and editing services were in direct competition to book publishers such as BookBaby and IngramSparks. Still, Amazon says the latest round of layoffs…