It is done.
I’d said I’d release it in March. And I hate not coming through with what I’ve said even more than setting deadlines in the first place. So, after weeks of editing back-and-forth, interrupted by an ill-timed but nonetheless enjoyable spring break, I kicked it all into another gear. There was a down-the-wire frenzy of converting my Word file to Kindle, downloading the resulting ebook file to my Kindle, proofreading, seeing a ton of minor and not-so-minor issues, making changes in Word as needed, and repeating the whole process, ad infinitum.
You’d think at this point there would only be minor formatting issues, like the wrong size margin or heading type, but no. Surprisingly, I ended up doing quite a few rewrites – sentences that didn’t roll off your tongue quite right, situations that I felt needed more backup explanation, other sentences that needed to be taken out entirely. The thing is, you don’t really know what your book looks like until it is, well, a book. When your pages are in book format, all of a sudden they look very different from what they used to look in your Word file, even if you set it up in the reading pane. You simply don’t see certain problems until you find yourself turning real pages (or, in the event, virtual Kindle pages, but still), and then they suddenly glare you in the face.
If you are writing your own book, I’d suggest you set aside some time for this phenomenon, especially if you’re working on a deadline. (If you haven’t set yourself a deadline, you may never publish your book, so that doesn’t help either.)
After seemingly endless rounds of changes and checking the results on all the different Kindle devices using Kindle Direct Publishing’s online preview utility, I finally said to myself “this must be it, you can’t possibly do this even one more time.” Scared to death, because I’m a perfectionist, I hit the “publish” button with trembling fingers and poof, there it was, released out into the world and an uncertain future, my very first book!
Kilimanjaro Diaries: Or, How I Spent a Week Dreaming of Toilets, Drinking Crappy Water, and Making Bad Jokes While Having the Time of My Life
My journey is far from over as there is much left to do, but for now I won’t bore you with any more tales of self-publishing (that’s fodder for another blog post). I know you must be as eager to finally see the real thing as I am to not read another word of it for a VERY long time. So pour yourself a big cup of coffee, head on over to Amazon, and begin reading already.