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All the news that's fit to print--or not.  Check in here for our latest articles and updates about anything in the ePublishing world.

 


Cover Cover Cover Cover Cover Chameleon...

It Goes Around, It Goes Aroouuuunnnnd the book...

Full Book Cover Parts

This is what a cover for a print book looks like.  

An issue that seems to be cropping up, repeatedly these days, is the incident of self-publishers who decide to do a print version of the book and don't realize that they need a cover for that print book that is different than the eBook cover. An eBook cover is one thing--it's the front.  The glamorous part, right?  The pretty part. The part where you get to sit and think about how great it's going to look. The images, the ideas, the fonts...all that great stuff. Right?

But here's the thing.  There's no mystical cover maker, for a print book, where you just pop-in your front cover, and VOILA!, your print cover is magically made.  You, Publisher, are the person responsible for ensuring that the cover--called a wraparound--gets made.  

That doesn't mean that you can present a book producer, or Createspace or IngramSpark, etc., with three pieces of a cover, and think that they're going to make the cover for you.  They won't.  Nor will anyone else.  

I've lost track of the number of times we've had a client get to what we think is the end of their time with us--we've given them their eBooks and their print interior--and suddenly, an email arrives, telling us that their "cover" is being rejected at Kindle Print Beta or Createspace or some other place, because the cover that they're trying to upload is their eBook cover.  Or, they put a cover together, somehow, and it's completely the wrong size or shape or some other problem.  And there have been any number of times that this same publisher scheduled a book launch, or a pre-sale, or some other promotional event--and there's no time for the cover to be made.  

Don't let this be you.  If you're going to do a print book, you have to have a wraparound cover. This is a cover with a front, back and spine--all in a single piece.  Not in multiple pieces.  (That question seems to come up a lot!)  What are the parts that make up a wraparound cover?  

Front, back and spine, all in a single piece, in PDF format, and--this is important--with BLEED. I know, "bleed" is confusing, but what that means is that there's a small extra margin for error, all around the outer edges of the image or PDF. This allows the printer and trimmer to have some forgiveness, when the covers are printed and trimmed, for addition (binding and gluing) onto the paperback.  

 Really, that's all there is to it--the three parts that you're already used to looking at--the front, rear, and spine of a printed book--all in a single piece.  Although I used colored boxes to segregate the parts, in this sample image, the wraparound cover is always given to the printer or POD company in a single PDF file--all three pieces merged seamlessly.  You can see examples without my boxes drawn on them in the example gallery below.  

 I borrowed a few mocked-up covers from our friend, Derek Murphy, of Creativindie.com and its sister site, DIYBookCovers.com, (which we highly recommend for publishers on a tight budget!) for the purposes of demonstrating the difference. It's not really complex, but do you want to be the author caught out, with a ready-to-go print interior and an eBook cover, only?  No, of course not.  So, what's the difference?

Examples below--click any thumbnail to bring up the full image. 

So:  now you know what to expect.  If you've only done an eBook before this moment in time, and you've decided to take that leap of faith, into print, make sure that you invest the time needed to figure out what you're going to do, about getting a full-sized wraparound cover for your print edition.  

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CLOSED for Labor Day 2017!

 A girl waits at a Train Station, Labor Day 2017

Closed for Labor Day, 2017

Saturday, September 2nd through Tuesday morning, September 5th. 

Yes, it's true. We're going to be closed for 2 whole days.  I know, you're all accustomed to the idea that we're here, 24/7/365--even if that's not quite true--and it's shocking, but even the wicked need to regenerate from time to time, and as our labors are largely Herculean, well, what better time to do that than the Labor Day weekend?  

That means that the ADMIN offices are closed. No phones, no email, no nuttin'!

Lastly:  if you haven't yet donated to help the people and pets of Hurricane Harvey, please do so.  Every penny does count.  I know, everyone says that all the time, but...it really does.   

We'll see you on Tuesday!  

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CLOSED for our annual Midwinter Break!

Bah humbug

Howdy, gang.

Yes, it's true. We're going to be closed for 10 days, if you're reading this before 12/23/16, or we already are, if you're stumbling onto our front steps, after noon on December 23rd, 2016. Every year, for the last three months of the year, we endure horribly long working days, rush book after rush book, and just all-round craziness. So, come the Christmas holiday, we take a break, intended to be about 10 days. We call this the Midwinter Downtime.  That means that the ADMIN offices are closed. No phones, no email, no nuttin'!

If you have a book in production with us, fear not. We have a couple of fellows who needed some extra shekels this year, who asked to pick up some hours during the Downtime. They'll be working on your books, while the rest of us are off recharging our batteries.

Please note: as whacky as this sounds, the phone company tells us that our voicemail is NOT working. If you don't reach someone, when you call, please, just send us an email instead. I promise that I will cheerfully call you when we get back. And we won't chase you around, either; you don't have to worry that if you change your mind, or go with someone else, that we'll be calling you and calling you. We're just not built that way. We don't harass people.  It's not who we are.  You can call or email and leave your contact information in perfect confidence that we'll treat you, as we wish to be treated.  No excuses, no whining, no kidding.   

 

So, Merry Christmas, Happy Chanukah, Happy Kwanzaa, happy holidays to All, and to All, a Good Night!

 

We'll see you next year!  

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CLOSED for the 24 Hours of LeMans!

 Le Mans 2013 wikipedia1

Closed for the 24 Hours of LeMans, 2017

Saturday June 17th-Sunday June 18th. 

Yes, it's true. We're going to be closed for 2 whole days.  Every year, we get together, shut the office, pop the popcorn, get plenty of sleep on Friday night, because come Saturday morning...it's the 24 Hours of Le Mans, arguably the greatest sportscar endurance test in all of racing.  We stay awake for every minute--all 24 hours of it--and we drag ourselves in, come Monday morning.

That means that the ADMIN offices are closed. No phones, no email, no nuttin'!

If you have a book in production with us, fear not. Many of the bookmakers have zero interest in the race (inconceivable!). They'll be working on your books, while the rest of us are off rooting for our favorite teams and drivers.

If you call while we're off, please, just send us an email instead. I promise that I will cheerfully call you when we get back. And we won't chase you around, either; you don't have to worry that if you change your mind, or go with someone else, that we'll be calling you and calling you. We're just not built that way. We don't harass people.  It's not who we are.  You can call or email and leave your contact information in perfect confidence that we'll treat you, as we wish to be treated.  No excuses, no whining, no kidding.   

We'll see you on Monday!  

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Will You Be a Copyright Claim-Jumping Victim At Amazon?

 

Feel a Disturbance in the Force?  Let's Discuss Your Copyrights.
Feel a Disturbance in the Force? Let's Discuss Your Copyrights.

 

There's been a Disturbance in the Force...

Amazon's been asking authors of published works to prove that they are the copyright holders.  In fact, it's happening in increasingly large numbers, to folks who've had books published for years.

One poster from the Kindle Digital Platform wrote:

"A friend of mine had one of his boxed book sets pirated. 3 of his books are available on a book pirating website. Amazon has discovered this, shut down his publishing account and are requiring him to prove he owns the rights to his own books. How can we do this? He didn't copyright them, but did include a copyright page at the beginning of all 3 books."

That poor bastard was the victim of the Double Whammy.  First, he's pirated, and then, to rub salt into the wound, the mere act of him being pirated causes Amazon to question the legitimacy of his publishing the Boxed Set!  Talk about ignominy. Another wrote:

"We are trying to publish a couple of books on KPD which my husband wrote in 2012. They have told us we need to prove we have publishing rights, but don't help with insight as to how to accomplish this. Say they can only respond to publisher!" 

That one goes on to say that she can't get anywhere with Amazon because they don't accept that her husband is the publisher. What the hell do you do, if you're in that situation?

Now, the only way that this would be occurring is if someone else--we'll call that thief Darth Dickhead--files a claim, with Amazon, that your work is actually their work. So...how do you prove that you're you? How do you prove that you wrote your own book?

This is simply a newer, digital form of a type of thievery that's been around forever, known as claim-jumping.  If you're unfamiliar with the term, claim-jumping is when someone else claims to own or have rights to property that you have already claimed as your own.  

The bigger and easier-to-answer question is: how can you easily prevent this from happening?

The simple answer is, you can't.  Any idiot--any Darth Dickhead--can click a button on Amazon's website and claim that your Intellectual Property--your book--is theirs.  In this day and age, the sound of a Light Saber swooshing has been replaced with the sound of a click.  The click that will deprive you of your rights.  

Click below, on "Read More," to answer the question, "How Can You Protect Your Books?"

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Read more ...

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Phone Call Alert! 

(Please read, thanks.) 

Old Timey Switchboard Operator Cartoon

 

Due to the COVID-19 onslaught, we currently cannot take incoming phone calls.  

 

A notification about phone calls:  due to the COVID-19 plague, we've significantly increased our incoming inquiries--nearly double our usual volume--and the number of incoming inquiries by phone has been literally overwhelming.  Although most writers will say that their call "will only take 15 minutes," the truth is, that after 10 years of doing this, most author inquiry calls take an hour.  45 minutes at best. I'm currently receiving 7-10 calls/day, and due to that, I've had to stop accepting incoming phone calls, which my voicemail will tell you. You can leave a message--I can't call you back without one--and if a call is needed, I will of course call you.  But we have very complete and extensive email replies, handouts and our website is very informative. Almost all the questions that I receive during a call are actually already answered on our site, or are, in fact, publishing questions, not questions about our services, what we do, what we offer, or the like.  I already handle between 90-130 emails/day, as it is. I can't handle that many emails and take 7-10 hours of calls each day. I can't. So, in order to be able to answer this huge email volume, to help the greatest number of people, with my time, I've had to stop accepting calls.  I'm sorry, but that's just how it is. I'm in the process of setting up a call-appointment function, for free 15-minute calls to answer questions from new prospective customers and longer paid sessions for folks who generally want consulting on "publishing," generally (and for prospective kids' book publishers, as a special category of paid consulting).  But that functionality isn't yet set up. I hope to get that working the 3rd week of July, sometime.  

Thank you for your understanding.