Wednesday, April 20, 2011

First Galley Has Arrived, and Thoughts On Printing Services

My first galley proof has arrived, and you can't imagine how excited I am! The Kindle and Nook versions going live was exciting, and I'm still pumped about that, especially the positive responses I've been getting from friends, and occasional strangers. But this is a book, held in my hands, with the cover I designed (implemented by people more talented than me with graphics, of course), the jacket blurb I wrote, and the about the author section that talks about ME! I'm checking over the proof right now, and so far things are looking great. Quality of the manufacture seems as good (or better) than anything you'll find in your local brick and mortar store, which is definitely pleasing. I've run through all the chapter headings to make sure they're on the right pages, drop caps turned out fine, and formatting looks OK at the beginning of each chapter. Next step is to skim through and make sure the formatting in the rest of the book turned out as well. If I'm satisfied at that point, it's almost time to put it up for sale!

I wanted to take this opportunity to talk a little bit about the printing and distribution route I've chosen, and why. I've been moderately tight-lipped about naming the company before seeing the finished product, but since the book is going live soon, I might as well go with it.  I decided to use Createspace and Amazon.

This wasn't an easy decision.  I've been a fan of for printing for quite some time, years in fact, and have referred people to them on more than one occasion. When I finished the first draft of The Door to Canellin, my intent was to only share it with family by printing up a few copies clearly labeled as "draft copy" and "not for resale", "unpublished novel", things like that. These were for Christmas presents to my immediate family only. I used Lulu, as they were the only game in town at the time for inexpensive, short run projects like that. And I will tell you, the quality was excellent.  The books feel good in the hand, the cover graphics came out perfectly, and my family was pleased to have a personalized, thoughtful, and creative gift from me.  The following Christmas, they got the rough draft of book 2, The Door to Justice, in the exact same form, and everyone was elated.

Naturally, when I began this publishing process, my first thought was Lulu, and their pricing was what influenced my "projected retail price". But then I did some more research, and I found that Createspace not only had many more options available, and much more market penetration, but with their services, I could set my retail price much lower, approaching the average book cost from the major publishers! I was very thorough, and kept trying to find a reason to keep my loyalty to Lulu, but the more I researched, the more it seemed Createspace would give me more options, more distribution outlets, and more potential sales than I could get from Lulu.

I'm still not 100% convinced, we will have to see how everything goes. And I'm certainly not disparaging Lulu! They offer a great service, and I know from experience a great finished product in the books they print. And I'm using them to print my limited edition hardcovers, as there is no hardcover option at Createspace. But now that I've got my first galley proof in hand, I do feel even more strongly that Createspace will be the best distribution outlet for The Door to Canellin.


  1. CreateSpace certainly has some nice options, doesn't it?

    I've looked through them before. When I originally wrote The Sword of Kirakath, I had planned on publishing through Amazon and CreateSpace. I'll probably do that when the rewrite is done.

    I hope to hear more feedback regarding it(CreateSpace) once the paperback version of The Door to Canellin comes out.

    Oh, and I wanted to thank you. After I visited your blog and checked it out a bit, I decided to start my own. It's a new experience for me.

    On one final note, I don't show up as anonymous anymore, so that's a plus.

  2. Way to go on taking the plunge and starting a blog! I find that every once in a while, I like to rant and/or rave about some topic or another, and the blog is a great way to do it. I also hope that I'm keeping it informative and interesting for my readers, what with the essays about publishing and the updates on my book's status and progress. Keep watching here, the paperback release of The Door to Canellin should happen in about a week, and then I hope to have more updates on my adventure with Createspace.

  3. I know what you mean.

    And I'm watching your blog and have it in my favorites on my browser, so I'll be keeping up to date on your stuff.

    I wanted to tell you I just started The Door to Canellin, by the way. I'm 20% into it, and I have to say that your writing style is incredible. Even if this isn't my favorite indie book that I've ever read, I'm sure you'll be my favorite indie author. It's too early to tell for sure on both counts right now though.