Friday, March 05, 2010



I really genuinely thought this would be a blog about getting back on the bus. A short interlude in the gloomy netherworld between publishers until I was picked up and was on my way again.

How long was it?

Confession 1, February 2005.

I couldn't have imagined all the hard work and heartache that was to follow.

And I still don't have a print publisher. But do I want one? I'm completely unsure about sending my fiction agent a copy of the ebook. She knows I've done it but has a conflict of interest. If she wants to know more she'll ask me. On the other hand is it crazy not to send a copy when the London Book Fair is around the corner? But wouldn't it be more fun to keep on with the epublishing and see where it goes?

I've got the old Amazon tic back again. I'm loving this kindle thing. I don't understand it at all but, look!, today the book is number 96 in Green Housekeeping chart, number 57 in the Cleaning, Caretaking and Relocating chart and number 18 in the homeopathy chart. Meantime, Made in China, the short story I put up as a tester under a different name has been bought by somebody as well, for one dollar (the UK price includes costs & VAT), earning me 35 cents. The book is also up on Lulu ebooks and Scribd. Very useful place, Scribd. You can't sell from the UK but you can put sample chapters up, or any document at all, of any description, you want to share, publicly or privately.

Publishing on Kindle is very simple but different to writing for PDF. There's limited colour and photographs don't work. I had to transfer back from Open Office to a word document and close up all the gaps and tabs. Then you put page spacers between chapters and save it as word HTML. Then you upload it onto the browser and have a look. It's fairly primitive and getting indents and spacings perfect is nearly impossible. I checked out the competition's layouts via the free Kindle iphone App and then spent time downloading, checking again, downloading again getting mine up to at least as good as professional standard. You can get an HTML version back to correct it that way but I haven't worked out unzipping on my computer.

Hopefully now comes the fun bit. The press release has been written and goes out next week. Meantime, Smashwords is another ebook distributor am about to join. Ha ha:

Why did you create Smashwords?
Smashwords was inspired by my own unsuccessful multi-year attempt to get my novel published.....

spool down the FAQs to Smashwords' founder Mark Coker's own not getting published story.

Bye bye, thanks for visiting, come again soon.


liz fenwick said...

Fascinating especially as I just read JA Konrath's blog about his huge success with ebooks via Kindle....


Amanda Mann said...

J A Konrath's blog? Thanks for the tip off, going there now...

Anne Brooke said...

Great stuff, Amanda - good that the power of choice is now definitely back in your court!


Andrys Basten said...

I wrote an entry a few weeks ago about Konrath and others who are doing well on the Kindle books system and a bit about how that was helped along.

Here's to the new offspring!

genevieve said...

Wow, what a journey! it's fantastic that you have made it here, Amanda. What incredible tenacity you have, as recorded here in so many posts. You are the epitome of 'pick yourself up, dust yourself down', Ma'am.
An Australian editor has put his journal on the Kindle too, in e-book format only, for a range of reasons.
Apparently it will save him megabucks in publishing, and he hopes it will increase his international audience too.
Brava to you, dear.

Amanda Mann said...

Thanks Anne, after years of writing with hands tied behind back it's been a very empowering experience so far. Andrys, thanks for the link, I'm loving your kindle blog and finding it very useful. And Genevieve! My very first blog commenter! So glad to see you're still here.

genevieve said...

Often waiting with bated breath, Amanda, but yes, still subscribed. I really wanted a happy ending for you!!