Monday, 3 December 2012

Paperback covers for print on demand with FeedARead

The Only Genuine Jones book cover
Full jacket book cover
Over the last couple of days, I've been putting some work into finishing the proofs for the print on demand version of The Only Genuine Jones. For readers who may have missed the announcement, the paperback edition will be launched on February the 27th, 2013, at the Clachaig Inn, Glencoe, and will be available to order from Amazon from that date. I am hoping to also get the title into selected bookstores and other locations in Lochaber, but that's very much a work in progress!

I am using FeedARead to produce the book. They allow authors a huge amount of control over their work; I have been able to personally design every single page, include my own illustrations and typography, and design my own cover. However, this DIY approach does involve a lot of work, and over the last few days I have been putting in the hours to get the interior of the book up to scratch.

FeedARead allow uploads of either Word or PDF documents. PDF provides a more precise finish with embedded fonts, but my proof was 70MB in size so I was unable to upload it directly to the web form. After some emailing to and fro, I found that I could use a large file handler to directly email it to the company. I'd tried uploading my Word document (which is much smaller) but when converted it was a mess.

So now the interior of the book is being checked and awaiting approval, a process that can apparently take several weeks (which is why I'm doing this nearly three months before launch!)

I already have an excellent front cover for the book, designed for me by the talented John Amy, but had nothing for the spine and back cover, so decided to make them myself. My first version looked striking but I soon learned that POD manufacturing tolerances meant that the spine might not be exactly on-centre in the printed book, which would look sloppy:

If the cover was printed a millimetre out, it would leave a black and white stripe down the left hand side of the front cover. The back cover also looked rather heavy. I decided to go back to the drawing board.

My final design is at the top of this post, and I'm much happier with it. It loses the striking spine graphic, sadly, but will provide a more consistent final product and the entire look is very in-keeping with my author 'brand' (something I have gone to a lot of effort to cultivate).

Oh, and the reviews keep rolling in for the book. The 9th 5* review was posted on Amazon today, and I'm back in the Top Ten bestseller list for Mountaineering Kindle books!
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