My First Book – PUBLISHED


Mission Accomplished.

My first book ‘My Nan is a Ninja’ has been completed!
After many months I can now officially call myself an author, not just a writer! (For those who don’t know, to be classed as an author you need to have a published work under your belt).

There was a lot to learn, many new skills to develop, and I managed to misjudge how long tasks would take every step of the way. But I finally made it.
I’ve really enjoyed the entire creative process and I’m proud of what I have achieved. There’s still plenty of room for improvement in all areas, but that’s good, as it means I have room to grow!

From here on out I will only be posting updates on my book progress once a month, as like I’ve mentioned previously, I have a feeling it’s going to be much of the same for each book! I will start my book reviews in two weeks time, and these will be posted every other Friday. Once I’ve got more experience under my belt I will also begin posting my favourite tips and advice once a month.

Thanks again to all my friends, family and subscribers who have been with me on my journey. Here’s to the next book!

To get your copy of ‘My Nan is a Ninja’ click HERE!


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My First Book – Week 16


Today Tomorrow Sunday is the big day!

So, I had planned on publishing ready for a promotion today – turns out I had a lot more tweaking and finalising than I realised! I’ve only just managed to compile the book yesterday and this evening I’ll make the final edits.
I admittedly feel quite anxious about publishing as I don’t want to have missed anything, or find out there’s a mistake after the book’s published. I wonder if that’s what all new authors feel? I guess nothing can be perfect and eventually you have to draw a line under it and just get it out there.

I also realised this week that I’d missed a crucial point when designing the pages – I hadn’t accounted for the Kindle aspect ratio. As I started to load my images into Kindle Kids Book Creator I was surprised by how my pages all seemed to fit perfectly, despite not paying any heed to resolution or image size. I’d expected maybe a tool to resize the images in the software, to make the images fit the standard Kindle aspect ratio, but there was none. It seemed all too convenient – something wasn’t right.
A quick Google search and I found another author – Chip Street, who’d had the exact same problem.  Turns out that despite appearances, the Book Creator software doesn’t auto-resize images and instead adds in scrollbars when needed – not what anyone wants!
Following Chip’s guidelines, I resized all my pages to the Kindle 5:8 aspect ratio, adding a bit of extra image on at the top and bottom. This actually improved the composition as it then meant I had more room to fit the text in, which is a problem I realised I might have earlier in the development process. So thanks Chip!

All going well I’ll publish tonight and set the free promotion for tomorrow. Watch this space!

UPDATE:

So I managed to publish My Nan is a Ninja yesterday as planned, however upon publishing my book, it then went under review which I was told could take up to 72 hours (something I was completely unaware of)!
I found that although the review was completed this morning, I’ve now missed the deadline for running a promotion today. So instead, the promotion will be tomorrow!

See you then!


 

My First Book – Week 15


The Finishing Touches

My Nan is a Ninja is almost complete. Almost.
I had planned to publish it this week ready for this Friday post, however, I wanted to be absolutely certain I haven’t missed anything. I’m going to go over everything again this weekend with the intention of publishing by Sunday.

I did some more tying up loose ends this week – I finished the front cover and ‘from the author’ pages, I did some final tweaking to the illustrations, and I made further adjustments to my website. I also wrote my book description and chose the all-important keywords – let’s hope they’re good ones!
All that’s left to do now is to finalise the layout in Kindle Kids’ Book Creator and arrange a few promotions using my long list of promotional websites (courtesy of Kindlepreneur)!

Next week I’ll get an Amazon promotion in place on Friday, so as a thank you to all my subscribers you’ll be able to download it for free! One more week people!

My First Book – Week 14


Tying up loose ends…

This week I had a good think about everything I need to do ready for publishing My Nan is a Ninja and began making a final checklist. Turns out there was still quite a few things to round up!

I still needed to finish setting up my KDP account. For those who don’t know, you are required to enter an IBAN and BIC number when setting your bank details. I had no idea what these were, but it turns out they’re basically the international version of a UK account number and sort code. After an hour of frustration trying to get my online banking to work I managed to find hidden in the settings my IBAN and BIC number and got my KDP all up to date.

I also set up a more professional sounding e-mail address – tom@tomplumbooks.co.uk

I’ve been working on my front cover and correcting some mistakes on the illustrations this week too, although until I try adding the words I’ve got no idea how many more adjustments I’ll need to make (hopefully not too many)!

I’ve also been going back over my notes that I gathered, mainly from Kindlepreneur, making sure I’ve not missed anything and I’ve started thinking more about my keywords, subtitle and book description.

So, there’s still quite a few loose ends to tie up, but I’m ticking them off one at a time, each tick a step closer to the finished product!


 

My First Book – Week 13


No shading required.

So this week I had planned to work on the shading and highlighting on my illustrations. After experimenting with a few different styles I realised that it didn’t add anything to the images and actually seemed unnecessary. I hummed and hawed about this decision as I was worried the illustrations would look incomplete, but after numerous attempts, I found that the images just looked better without. Which is great, because it will save me a lot of time!

So all that’s left to do now is refine the line work in places, correct a few mistakes, and then the story pages will be complete. I’ve started working on the front cover, and I’ll need to create some illustrations to accompany the ‘from the author’ page, and the inside title page, etc. After that, I’ll be all done! I’m reluctant to put a timeline on it, but I think I’ll be ready to publish by the end of the month!

Untitled-1

I also ordered my web hosting this week with a company called OVH, as recommended by my web designer friend. It’s only £2 a month and I now have a custom domain name – tomplumbooks.co.uk
It’s all coming together slowly but surely!


My First Book – Week 12


Colouring? What colouring?!

Colouring

Just a very short post this week as I have only one thing to say – the colouring is done! After many late nights of Photoshop, the colouring is finally complete! I finished it this evening, hence the very late post (11pm GMT). Admittedly there is still some tweaking to do, but generally speaking, all pages have now been finished. Next up shading and highlighting!


 

My First Book – Week 11


A week off…

Had a week off this week and was away visiting family so not a lot to report I’m afraid this week. I did manage to get a reasonable amount of colouring done while I was away though, so should hopefully move on to the shading and highlighting fairly soon.
Now that a fair few pages are finished (in terms of colouring) the book is really starting to come alive, and I’m really excited to see it compiled and printed.

A problem that I’ve been addressing this week, is when I was designing the book I seem to have forgotten to make room for the text on a number of pages. An amateur mistake I know, especially as some pages I had considered the text and others I completely forgot. I guess I got carried away with the drawing and focused too much on creating an interesting image and forgot all about where the text would go. And I’m now having to fix this in Photoshop, at the cost of the composition in some cases too, unfortunately. I’ll remember for book number two though!
Every mistake is a lesson learnt, and every error is an opportunity for growth.