Tag Archives: contractors
Emails and Files
A short blog post about emails and files!!
It seems many people either don’t realise, forget or just don’t think about files they’ve attached to emails and sent to contractors, publishers, editors etc., etc.
Why do I say this?
If you send a file to someone… anyone, then you should still have a copy of that email and file YOU sent to them in your email account unless YOU deleted the OUTGOING FILE!!
Don’t ask the person you sent it to for a COPY back (if no changes have been made) GO AND LOOK IN YOUR EMAIL ACCOUNT! This not only saves YOU time, it also SAVES your CONTRACTOR TIME – TIME YOU PAY FOR…
FIVERR and the Pros and Cons of Formatting
FIVERR and those who offer Formatting, also known as Interior Book Design, through this platform can be awesome and then not so much. Authors, especially new ones, need to know how to research and get the best. It’s time for those questions again. All Authors need to know what questions to ask to find a good business to help them get the work done. The company also needs to know various things so they can get your Formatting correct without too many edits.
First thing. Remember how long it took you to write your novel! Well, Formatting isn’t done in an hour! I honestly wouldn’t touch any business who says they can format your work for $10 in an hour. There is bound to be something wrong.
Today I watched a video about Formatting. Some useful information, and with the book open on the screen, they showed the results. It was the results which caught my attention. Two things wrong from what I saw. First, the indents looked too big and secondly, the text wasn’t justified. Though, this doesn’t matter on eBooks, in PRINT it is a MUST…Go look at any traditional book, and you’ll see the right hand edges of the text are straight. If PRINT books aren’t Justified, they look horrible. I’m exceptionally fussy, and I won’t even read a manuscript unless it is justified. It’s the first thing I do on a clients manuscript. I will also teach a client how to do this, so they know for next time. You will also find 99% of what I write on my blog is JUSTIFIED. Those articles not Justified are usually SHARED LINKS. I think having your text makes it look nice and tidy.
If you are going to offer a SERVICE to an AUTHOR, please make sure you know what you’re doing. It’s a hell of a learning curve and, unlike many, I’m self-taught and learnt the hard way. I’ve learnt so much now that I’m updating my own books as well as past clients.
QUESTIONS to Ask an INTERIOR BOOK DESIGNER
1. What type of books do you format?
2. What fonts do you suggest for my genre?
3. What size fonts will you use?
4. Do you use the same font for Headings & Titles or blend fonts to work together?
5. What book size do you suggest for Paperback and hardback?
6. What is the best indent size?
7. Do you Justify text?
8. Can you do Contents pages and Linked Contents for eBooks?
9. Headings, Page numbers – Starting at Chapter One, Dropped Caps and Header information?
10. Can your format full-colour children’s books for Paperback and eBook?
11. Do you have samples of your work?
You could probably add a lot more to this list. Make sure you have a good look at the traditional books you see. They can give useful pointers in how you may like to have your text laid out.
QUESTIONS FOR CHILDREN’S BOOKS
1. Font and font size are important, depending on the age of your readers.
2. Do they have experience with Full-colour children’s eBooks and PRINT
3. Do they have experience with BLEED! Will your book have a bleed or not.
4. How do they turn a full-colour book into an eBook and PRINT, so it comes out correct.
5. Will they check the IMAGES are 300 DPI if need be?
HOW MUCH WILL IT COST?
This once again depends on experience and what you want your book to look like. It can also depend on how long the book is. Is it a Novella, Novel or Saga? Is it a Children’s book and if so, what kind?
Once again, as with assisting new authors with bad work, generally from FIVERR Businesses is something we do at Plaisted Publishing House. It can be trying and tiring work, especially if it is a full-colour children’s book. I have assisted with two of these in recent months. If you only pay small amounts, it should clue you in, they may not be as professional or experienced as you might think. I dislike seeing people ripped off, especially if they are on a budget like most Independent Authors are. We’re not all rich, and many of us have jobs outside the home to pay the bills.
Don’t complain about paying someone either. A slightly higher fee could mean better work and that you’re less likely to need someone else to do edits. Remember you pay the plumber to do their job! I have seen bad work. I’ve seen good work. Please do your homework and RESEARCH before you hire anyone.
KNOW WHAT TO ASK, WHEN TO ASK AND MAKE SURE YOU SEE SAMPLES. IF YOUR INSTINCT SAYS ‘HELL NO’ THEN LISTEN TO IT. IT COULD SAVE YOU MONEY.
THIS IS AN EXAMPLE OF BAD FORMATTING FROM FIVERR FOR AN EBOOK. WHEN I WENT TO HELP THE AUTHOR, I LOOKED AT THE MOBI FILE, AND THIS IS WHAT I FOUND. I NEVER DID TELL THEM…TO HORRIFIED.
THIS IS AN EXAMPLE OF WHAT I DID TO MEND THE ABOVE FILE (DIFFERENT PAGE) AND MAKE THE IMAGE LOOK LIKE THE PAGES FROM A PAPERBACK BOOK.
NEEDLESS TO SAY, IT CAN TAKE A WHILE TO SORT THINGS OUT. MAKING SURE IMAGES ARE THE RIGHT DPI AND SIZE – ESPECIALLY FOR PAPERBACKS.
One last thing. I’m still learning. I will always be learning my trade, updating how things are done as technology changes. I’m happy to learn the same as I’m happy to share the Pros and Cons of looking for the right contractor, be it an illustrator, editor or interior book designer.
PLEASE RESEARCH! NEXT TIME I WILL TALK ABOUT EDITING
Fiverr and Images
Many new authors use Fiverr as a cheap place to go and get work done on their books, be it a book cover, images inside a book, editing or formatting. All I can say is please check and research anyone you use, especially from Fiverr and similar sites.
Yes, there are some great people on there, the same as there are in places like Reedsy. Please read their reviews, ask other authors who they use with success. Ask questions of the contractor who wish to use. Find out what questions you need to ask.
My issue with Fiverr, is there are a lot of …well…not so good designers there. After all, you get what you pay for.
Why am I talking about this? Well in the last two months, I have assisted two different authors with their books. First of all the images were the wrong DPI – pixels per inch. If you’re making a paperback book, any images and book covers MUST be at least 300 dpi. It is only with eBooks that the dpi can be lower – 92 to 96 dpi is good.
Another issue is how images are layered! Or were they done with copy and paste? A good artist, illustrator or graphic designer should LAYER images and building them up…NOT copy and paste. When things go wrong it takes a long time to sort out the mess. It’s the same with sizing a manuscript for the paperback. What is the size of your paperback? Do you need a bleed or is it a no bleed book? These are two other issues I’ve had to sort out.
To me Fiverr is starting to become as bad as Vanity Press, though at least you can get a refund with Fiverr.
I know at least one good graphic designer on Fiverr – If they’re still working because, like many new authors, I was one too…once. Seren Waters is a great graphic designer. Maybe it’s time for me to touch base with him again.
PLEASE MAKE SURE YOU RESEARCH YOUR CONTRACTORS BEFORE YOU HIRE THEM OR GO ASK THOSE SIMILAR TO US WHO RUN AUTHOR SERVICES AND OR AUTHOR ASSIST BUSINESSES. WE WON’T LET YOU DOWN AND YOU WILL GET GOOD ADVICE AND SERVICE.