It’s an unfortunate truth that even the most well thought out plan is subject to the demands and restrictions of the real world. A few days ago I thought that all I had left to do was to create my cover art, create a .mobi format file, and submit my eBook to Kindle. Two things happened that stopped the production process cold.
The first thing was death, my wife’s Uncle Dan passed away. To honor his passing we were required to make two trips out of town, one for the viewing Thursday evening, another for the funeral Friday morning. Neither of these events happened quickly and we were left physically and emotionally spent. Even if you consciously acknowledge that the passing was “for the best” or if you weren’t part of the family forced to view the descent on a daily basis, death is never easy. It impacts everything.
I bring this up as a partial explanation for not having already submitted my novel to Kindle, but more importantly as an example of one of the many limiting factors on production. This is something I’ve posted on previously. Life happens and it always has an impact. The other reason I mention it is that death figures prominently in much of my writing. It is the natural (or unnatural, depending on the circumstances) result of everything and everyone.
The other thing that happened recently was that, as I was about to process my novel through Mobipocket Creator, I thought I might take a gander at the Smashwords Style Guide. The Simplified Guide to Building a Kindle Book was very easy to follow, but it was almost too simplified and left me with the feeling that there was something I had missed. I had, and I found it in the Smashwords Style Guide. The Guide is easy to follow, very detailed, and not only explains what format changes need to be made, but why. I admit I still haven’t finished fixing my formatting, but I’m not far from it. The added benefit of following the Smashwords Style Guide is that the novel will be ready for submission to both Kindle and Smashwords.
The good news from this past weekend is that I finally decided on my cover art design, which I will post as soon as I submit to Kindle. Actually it was the cover art that got me to thinking about reviewing the Smashwords Style Guide. The image size requirements for Kindle aren’t really specific – “Minimum 500 x Maximum 1280 pixels”. Smashwords suggests “500 pixels wide X 700 pixels tall is a good size and ratio (your height is approximately 1.4 times greater than your width)”, then goes on to provide details on how to create the image and make sure it’s the right size, without having to speak HTML. It has been a while since I wrote HTML and I appreciate the plain English approach of the Guide.
If you have any comments about this or any of my posts, please feel free to click the comment link and let me know what’s on your mind.