“RISKY ISSUES” IS OUT!!! (+ I have a new site!)

 

Ebook Cover - Risky Issues by Lorraine Reguly

Yes, that’s right – my ebook, Risky Issues, is finally out!

I’m jumping with joy over here! (Okay, I’m not, literally, but I AM pretty excited!)

During the past two weeks, I’ve been busy. As it turns out, there is A LOT I hadn’t considered doing, but did.

Let’s back up a moment, shall we?

First things first…

I tried to format my book for Amazon, but ran into problems. Most of you know already that I’m a self-proclaimed non-techie, so this shouldn’t surprise you too much!

But I AM resourceful.

So what I did was this: I went on Facebook and jumped onto a group for indie authors (to which I have belonged for a while) and simply asked for a recommendation to an inexpensive formatter. After several conversations, I ultimately got help from Rich Meyer.

Who the heck is Rich Meyer?

Rich Meyer offers services at a relatively cheap rate and does a great job.

He rambles on his blog, too. 😉 But amongst all the book reviews is a golden post about formatting for free.

So, yeah, Rich is a great guy.

And yes, yes, he’s an author, too. Check out his Amazon author page! It gives you some information about him and also lists the books he’s written.

Uploading Problems

I originally uploaded my ebook to Amazon with the ISBN I was given. (Because I live in Canada, I get ISBNs for free. I just had to apply for it.) But then, I noticed that there was a minor issue when I previewed my ebook. There was no space between two words, but there should’ve been. So I had to correct it and then upload a new file. But then, in the same sentence, a space was deleted again. I know that these issues were caused as a result of the formatting, as my Word document was perfectly edited. So, I uploaded it again, after fixing the problem.

However, because the two files were technically “different,” my ISBN would not be accepted by Amazon. So I emailed the person from CISS (the Canadian ISBN Service), who explained to me that “every time there is a change in format or a change in edition, a new ISBN must be assigned.”

Great. More work. And all because one file contained “thework” and the other, “the work.”

I took a deep breath, and requested a new ISBN. Because I was originally assigned a “block” (a set of sequential ISBNs that are assigned to a publisher or self-publisher), this was easy to obtain.

(FYI, ISBN blocks come in different sizes. They can contain either 10, 100, 1000, 10 000, 100 000 numbers. All ISBNs found in the block start by the publisher prefix and are followed by other numbers to identify a publication and validate the ISBN. A publisher prefix identifies the publisher and the country of the publisher, and my prefix showed that I am a Canadian publisher and that I was assigned a block of 10 ISBNs.)

Because I was changing my ISBN, I decided to add a P. S. to the Special Note From The Author section of my ebook. I added my special poem, which I wrote when I was fifteen. (I would have added it to the table of contents, but I didn’t know how to format it properly!) I then uploaded my new file to Amazon with the new ISBN.

Adding Books to Goodreads

Once all that was complete, I added my book to Goodreads. Again, I had some problems with this. (Big surprise… I am a non-techie, remember?)

I ended up speaking with someone from Goodreads who explained that once books are added to their database, they cannot be removed. Apparently there are strict rules for this, too. So my book is listed twice instead of once. But really, I’m assured, it’s not a big deal. I will know for next time, though, to make sure everything is perfect and to only do it once.

Sigh.Ebook Cover - Risky Issues by Lorraine Reguly

Secondly, the things authors need to do…

Then the real work began. By “real” I mean “time-consuming” and “tedious” but necessary.

What did I do?

What a pain in the butt this all was! But kinda fun, too. 😉 However, I’m grateful they are all done.

I was interviewed, too…

It seems like things happen really fast sometimes. Shortly after Risky Issues went live, my good friend and indie author Melissa Bowersock sent me an email asking me some questions, which she turned into a blog post: Author Interview: Lorraine Reguly on Reaching a Milestone.

I’d recommend reading it if you want to pick up some tips. 😉

Then there was the birth of a new site… free of charge!

During the past year, many people told to me to snatch up a website with my name as the domain. Their urgency was unnecessary, in my opinion, as I’m the only Lorraine Reguly in this world. (Yes, it’s true!)

But now that I’m an officially published author, I figured it was about time to set up an author website.

So I did.

In fact, about 16 days ago, I purchased my domain name. With my hosting plan with Abivia, I’m allowed to have four other websites free of charge!

I also purchased a premium theme, which I had a few problems with, but which I eventually ironed out.

I installed plugins – including a new one I just found out about (and which I also installed on this site, which has worked wonders!) called Anti-Spam. This plugin is free and I highly recommend it!

My new author site is called Lorraine Reguly: Laying It Out There. I even set up a place where people can subscribe to my Author Newsletter!

Commenting on the new site is not yet available

While I was setting up my new site, I disabled the ability for people to leave comments. So far, I have published three posts, all visible from the home page.

The posts are:

They are all very short posts, so I’d encourage you to give them a read.

What’s Next?

Next I have to get my book up on Smashwords. Then I have to begin marketing it.

I’m going to be asking others to help, too, so if you are a blogger and want to help me with this, please let me know via email. You can interview me, simply feature my book on your site, whatever… I’m open to anything, and appreciate all the help I can get. 🙂

And if you want to buy Risky Issues and/or leave me a review of it, you can do that, too!

Regardless of what you choose to do, could you please share this post on your social networks? I’d love it if you did!

Thank you, and see you soon!

 

 

A Sneak Peek: Which Ebook Cover Is the Best?

question marksAs some of you may recall, I started a short story ebook project last year, and worked on it in patches, in between blogging, guest posting, and dealing with my health issues. I also tried to get someone to do the design for free, in exchange for promotion on my blog. Oddly, I ended up with two offers, and asked you to vote on which one I should choose. But…

Bad News

…Now, I have some bad and somewhat sad news. Because so much time has passed, the designer who originally agreed to help me changed her mind. So, I found myself being back at square one. And now I would like your input again. Yep, I’m sighing right along with you.

How I Got More Samples

When I got the news that the artist was not going to help me, I decided to try designing the cover myself. I also decided to use my name on it instead of a pen name, and I changed the title to reflect the content, as part of my reason for deciding to publish the selected stories is to raise awareness about issues of identity, drugs, abuse, death and friendship – but mainly sexual abuse, because I am a rape survivor. Here is what I came up with: risky issues cover I posted this on Facebook, asking for some feedback. One designer, Martha-Gail Moore from Playful Works, created this cover for me, based on the one I created: sample coverI then asked for some feedback on both Facebook and Google+ as to which one was more appealing, and got mixed responses.

I was told that the one I created was nicer, but that the font was easier to read in the second one.

Then one of my Facebook connections, Colleen Conger from Digital Photo Design , asked me if I wanted her to design a cover for me.

After learning of her reasonable rates, I decided to give her a shot, to see what she came up with. I also took all responses and feedback into consideration, and communicated with her what was wanted. Colleen then designed a cover for me, incorporating my little stick figure into it. (FYI, if you are interested in hiring her, her price rates start at $50.) Here is the final version of the cover she created: Ebook Cover - Risky Issues by Lorraine Reguly So now I have to decide on what cover I am going to use. I’ve already paid her for this design, and so it is mine to do with as I see fit. I am considering using one of these three, and so I am now going to ask for feedback once again.

Which cover should I choose?

I’ll show you them all side by side, in different sizes, so you can see what looks better. In order, they are Options 1, 2, and 3.

Here are all three, large sized:

Ebook Cover - Risky Issues by Lorraine Reguly risky issues cover sample cover

Here they are as thumbnails:

Option 1Ebook Cover - Risky Issues by Lorraine Reguly Option 2 risky issues cover   Option 3 sample cover

Vote OR Leave a Comment — PLEASE!

Please tell me in the comments which option looks best, or vote using the poll below.

Your choices are Option 1, Option 2, or Option 3.

THANK-YOU!

[polldaddy poll=”8104738″]

 

By the way, a year ago yesterday, I guest posted for the third time ever, with the post called My Self-Esteem Does Not Define Who I Am . This year, I’m getting ready to release my first self-published book of short stories. Wow, how time flies when you’re having fun! I hope by this time next year, I’ll have another book under my belt. 😉 Read More

20 Blog Post Must-Haves: The Ultimate Blogging Checklist

20_Blog_Post_Must_Haves_3D

20 Blog Post Must-Haves is the ultimate blogging checklist that has been endorsed by many awesome people who are well-known and who have large followings. (Take a look at the screenshots included in this article!) A must-have resource for bloggers, it is a step-by-step checklist that is jam-packed with information and links to the BEST articles I have found on the web. It is also illustrated by yours truly! Images accompany major points, designed to help bloggers reach their blogging potential!

Even though you may be an an experienced blogger, there is always room for improvement. No one is perfect, but reaching new personal heights as a blogger is easily accomplished by using the checklist of tips offered in  my guest post on Dear Blogger.

You can also read an excerpt from the ebook in this post. It includes additional tips that are not in my ebook, 20 Blog Post Must-Haves, too, since I wanted to give people an idea of my expertise as a blogger. Plus, not everyone can afford to spend $5 in today’s rough economy.

If you are one of the few people who can, and want to improve your blogging skills, you can also choose to get all 20 Blog Post Must-Haves – designed to help you improve your blog posts! The price? A $4.99 cup of coffee (with muffin or doughnut – whatever you prefer).  I wanted to keep it affordable, even though it is easily worth $20.  FREE! Simply sign up to my newsletter.

I wish that I had this ebook available to me. Now it is! I use this checklist every time I create a blog post! It is indispensable to me, and I know you will feel the same way about it that I do. A recently published article about adding tags to your posts was just published, too, and if it had been published last week, it would have made it into my book!

It really is a good book. It received many RTs (retweets) on Twitter – and connected me with a few more influential people.

Some of the wonderful people who helped me get the word out are:

Danny Iny from FirePole Marketing who now has a new website design.

endorsement from danny iny from fp

endorsement from danny iny t

Read More

Are You A “Pro” Blogger Yet? Use 20 Blog Post Must-Haves and Become One!

ebook image for 20 Blog Post Must-Haves

20 Blog Post Must-Haves is officially available to everyone now! I’m pleased to say that you can get it for free, too, if you hurry!

Let me tell you my story about how this came to be.

Yesterday, I had a guest post published about editing blog posts on a site called Mad Lemmings. Another one, on a different site, was published today on Dear Blogger!

That’s not the half of it, either! The two places where I’m guesting this week are on blogging blogs (blog about blogging)! Imagine that! I’m on my way becoming a pro blogger!

Wait – it get’s better! The two guys who are “having” me have never allowed guest posters on their blogs before!

Yes, I feel pretty special right about now.

WOW.

And having my name appear in close proximity to Problogger’s Darren Rowse is kinda neat.

gregs compliment comparing me to darren rowse

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Meet My Ebook Team, Learn About Publishing, and Vote on My Ebook Cover!

Votes

As many of you know, I’m in the process of trying to publish an ebook.

Writing a book is one small component of the publishing process, especially if you’re going to self-publish, which I am going to do with my first ebook, Terri’s Tales (tentative title).

During this process, there are a ton of decisions to be made, many steps that have to be followed, and numerous people to thank along the way. As it turns out, I need a whole team to publish my ebook, even though I am choosing to self-publish it.

I want you to meet my team, and do me one more little favour: vote on the cover I should use.

Before I introduce you to my team, the first person I need to thank is YOU.  Read More