The Third Time’s The Charm!

I want to thank everyone who has purchased my first book, Views From My Chariot: A Wheelchair Oddity, and send a special SHOUT OUT to those of you who have contacted me with your kind comments. It’s been a fun reunion, of sorts, catching up with old friends and classmates, as well as making new friends!

Writing Views… was a cathartic experience and the impetus for writing this second book, HOW TO BE THE BEST YOU-from A to Z.

My original goal was to finish the novel I began several years back. But, I began writing a short 10-15 page eBook. When the idea of writing it in color came to me, having never seen one before, it was like receiving a blood doping transfusion. Talk about a performance-enhancing drug!

Then came the downer: somehow, I deleted it at seven thousand words! (In the “Prologue,” I relate how I declared writing war one (WWI) and became “Wheelchair Warrior” the next day.) Amazingly, one month and seventy-five pages later, I stopped to reassess: It would have to be a book.

I learned from my first book that the printing process can add fifteen or more pages. I also knew that color books price higher due to their exorbitant publishing expenses. Therefore, I wanted to stay under one hundred pages for a retail price of $24.

For anyone considering a writing career, pay close attention.

I shot it off to the editor, down under. Three weeks-worth of ping-pong emails—rethinking and rewriting—is arduous work. Then, I sent my edited manuscript back to the publisher for book formatting.

DING! Round two of my writing war (WWII): I’m told I owe an additional $225.

What! For what?

It was now an estimated 110 pages.


After a half dozen email volleys, inquiring and arguing that I kept it under 100 pages, I found out that my editor had enlarged the font, to ease her read, and forgot to return it to its original size. A larger font increases the number of pages. Duh!

I PAID for her mistake, because I didn’t discriminate the size difference. Now, it was off to the graphic artist for fancy formatting and fun fonts.

This is another couple of weeks of intense eagle-eyed comparisons, assuring that all my bullet lists, graphics, and colored text have been entered and colored correctly.

Once this task is completed, and I approve it, it goes to the printer. Within the week, a sample ‘galley print’ (book) is mailed directly to me for the final approval before it’s listed for sale.

Aside from writing it, I’ve also read it umpteen times by now. I’m a speed-reader! I can spot an undotted “i” and uncrossed “t” lickety-split; even faster.

I spy a misspelled name. SHOOT! Why didn’t the editor catch that? I choose to let it go.

I see a one-letter color bleed that had previously been corrected after I called attention to it. DARN! Will anyone else see it; hopefully not.

Then, the deal breaker: I had noticed a color change the graphic artist had made to some subtitles. I reasoned that it didn’t matter and dismissed it. BUT upon reading the physical book, the color change caused even me, the author, confusion.

Pay $100 to pass GO!

WWIII: Back it went to the graphic artist for a handful of correction; then boomeranged on to the printer and back to me. FINALLY!

Within the three days to list it with all the book stores, two friends read it. It was when directing my second friend to a specific section that I realized it wasn’t there.

I scrolled through a gazillion email attachments to discover that the designer had accidently deleted it midway through our collaborations. Neither of us caught it. Sale freeze!

WWIV: It went back to the graphic artist (pro bono), the publisher (who extended grace and charged me half the ‘new file’ fee, $98), the printer, and on to me—for the third time, and the third sample book.

The third time’s charm; the paperback is READY to read! Glory, glory hallelujah!


P.S. I’m weighing the conversions. The only way to replicate the colored fun fonts and fancy formating is to make graphics of each, then manually insert those graphics! That’s conversion cost plus the added labor expense. And, only the iPad, Kindle Fire, and Color Nook read in color. Most people have the basic Kindle. What to do!


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