The Small Stuff

by Ashlynmathews on April 28, 2014

Don’t sweat the small stuff. That has been my mantra since I released Protector three weeks ago. What’s the big deal about the small stuff, you might ask? I formatted and uploaded Protector myself. Suddenly, the small stuff became more important.

The learning curve of formatting and uploading an ebook was high. Yet the end reward of better understanding the process made my decision more worthwhile. I also have a greater appreciation for formatters. It’s a time consuming, detailed oriented job.

However, with great power comes great responsibility. It’s empowering to know I have creative control over my work. It’s also scary. The responsibility of how my work is presented to readers falls on my shoulders. So of course, I want my work to be as perfect as possible.

Yet, I realize I can only control so much of the process. I can use the best recommended program to produce the cleanest mobi or epub. Or follow Smashwords’ formatting guideline to a tee. But somewhere between submission and publication, something seems to get lost in translation. The table of contents might be smashed together. There are inconsistencies in fonts and font sizes. There are multiple blank pages on Ibooks but not on Kindle. The list can go on and on.

After correcting then uploading or autovetting Protector several times through Amazon, Nook, Kobo and Smashwords, I’ve come to the conclusion that similar to writing a book, there has to be an end point. There has to be a THE END.

Depending on which app or device the book is read on, the presentation will be different. I’ve come to accept that. Similar to the writing process, my best formatting/uploading has to be good enough. Striving for an elusive perfect format takes away from what’s important to an author—writing the next book. What have you learn during your journey, whether it be the traditional path, or self-publishing?

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