Formatting Your E-Book Requires Wine

Indie publishing involves formatting. Ugh.

I was planning to write an erudite assessment of Anne Tyler’s Vinegar Girl, because I have always disliked The Taming of the Shrew. Tyler came up with a charming “doesn’t make you want to throw up” version. But I am not feeling intellectual today. Because I spent the day formatting.

No. Today is a day for glorying in having uploaded three short stories and a revision onto Amazon. While not exactly a philosophical challenge, the process has certainly tested my ability to not hit the laptop with the printer. Until now, I always considered patience one of my strong suits. That was before I met e-book formatting.

If e-book formatting were a man, he would never have a second date with the same woman.

Even the first date would be horrible since he would insist on restarting every five minutes.

“No, no,” he would scold. “Go back to the door and try entering again. This time, swirl your skirt clockwise and try to smile in twelve point font. And for heaven’s sake, make sure you don’t bleed into the gutter.”

Imagine open mike night in front of a sparse crowd of dejected ebook formatters. The bar is dingy, the floor sticky with spilled drinks. Fly paper hangs from the eaves and the glasses of beer are cloudy because the dishwasher is too depressed to rinse thoroughly. And in front, a comedian in stained khaki trousers which reach halfway up his fraying plaid shirt spits out one joke after another.

“Knock, knock. Who’s there? Times. Times who? Times New. Roman.”

“Where’s the best place to find widows and orphans? At the ends of paragraphs.”

“I’ve got a million of them. A million of them, I tell you.”

Rose Grey has written three romance novels and is hard at work on a fourth. If you liked this post, come visit the rest of the blog at Hot Pursuit and Not As Advertised are available as ebooks and as paperbacks online.