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Wednesday, April 27, 2011

Getting better

This Beatles song perfectly demonstrates for me what was so freaking brilliant about the partnership of Lennon and McCartney: they balanced each other. There's Paul, all cheery and upbeat with his "I've got to admit it's getting better, just a little better, all the time," and then John the grumpy realist chimes in with "It can't get no worse!" Love it.

Thanks to everyone who was concerned about my funk. It happens. My brain wiring is screwy and sometimes the serotonin and all that other gobbledygook goes awry. Sometimes, something in particular will set it off, other times not. But it passes. One morning, I'll wake up and no longer feel like an elephant is sitting on my chest.

Today, I feel tired, but I'm not bursting into tears every time I read a post or comment about the party this weekend. This is a very good sign. The negative nattering in my head has ceased, and good riddance.

Anyway... yesterday, I threw myself headlong into CreateSpace, which is the Amazon platform for self-publishing. I still haven't decided on cover art -- I'm not completely convinced that I have THE book cover from last week's shoot and I have another shoot scheduled for Friday -- but I figured I could start the formatting process.

Fortunately, I enjoy these computer challenges, figuring them out. Because things are always more complicated than you think they will be. For example, CS indicated that once I chose my book size, all I had to do for formatting the interior was to paste my document into one of their handy-dandy templates, and poof! Done! Right. I downloaded their 6 x 9 formatting template, and then copied and pasted my book file into it. What a mess. The fonts got all screwed up, and there was a horizontal line running across the bottom of each page that I could not figure out how to remove.

So I scrapped the template and searched the site for reminders on how to format in Word. Ah yes -- File + Page Setup + margins. Then change the type from flush left to justified (squared off on the left and right), add in hyphenation so I don't have those ugly gappy lines, then read through the entire document to make sure I didn't have any hyphenated widows (when a paragraph ends with just a piece of a word. I hate that.). I ended up with 301 pages; that's a fairly reasonable amount, no? For several minutes, I was freaked out because the document was over 600 pages! Then I realized that instead of a .5" margin at the bottom, I had a 5" margin. Oops.

Next, I looked up the various free online programs that will convert a Word doc into a PDF. The first one I tried didn't work. But the second one was a complete success. So now I know how to do the conversion when the file is finalized. Like I said, I love it when I figure these details out.

In the midst of this experimenting, I got an email out of the blue from someone I don't know; one of my readers, offering to proofread my book for me. He wishes to remain anonymous, but we exchanged several messages and I liked him immediately; plus, I could see that he was quite the excellent writer himself. I asked him why he would offer to do this for a perfect stranger, and he replied that he felt like I was already providing him a free service with the entertainment from my blog, and he wanted to return the favor. Besides, he was curious. :-)

So now, I have a proofreader, my second pair of eyes. I have read this damn thing over and over and OVER and yet I know there are things I've missed. So thank you, kind anonymous person. I appreciate this greatly.

It's Wednesday and my favorite TV shows are on tonight.

Oh... and did I mention that The Villain is coming over tomorrow? He is.

Stay tuned...


  1. 3 Cheers for Erica! You DO get to have warm buns this week after all! :)

    As for computer savvy-God Bless you woman. I HATE figuring out anything that doesn't work precisely the way instructions SAY they should.Then again I'm not writing a book anytime soon. LOL!

    As for mood cycles, I am a demon during PMS week. There is ALWAYS a valid reason for my irritation/anger, during this time which would annoy me during the other weeks, but that particular week seems to magnify any put upons or obstructions to my well being. Guess that's why spankings can work as stress relief too.

    Does The Villain have any beloved implements to use upon you or do you want to be surprised?

  2. It is NOT 1.50am in the morning, and I am NOT leaving this comment - I am fast ASLEEP...but I am SO happy to hear that you are feeling better.



  3. Score! All of this is wonderful news and I can't wait to read your book!

    Also, so happy to hear that you are getting de-funkified. I need to catch up (I've been working stupid hours lately).

    Hugs to you,


  4. YAY FOR YOU ERICA :-) I am so happy your feeling better thats GREAT news,I am glad to hear that the Villain is coming over tomorrow, thats so COOL. I can't wait to read your book as well. I know i could use a stress relief spanking i am so stressed out about everything, but then again i been VERY naughty and need a discipline otk spanking as well :-) Love you and sending big hugs your way my dear friend xoxo from your naughty girl Jade

  5. Kelly -- I can't use PMS as an excuse anymore; I'm done with that crap! lol Hmmmm... no clue about V's implements. His hand is quite formidable.

    Did someone hear Raven saying something? (looking around) Don't see her; must be imagining things. :-)

    Pink -- de-funkified, I like it! :-D Hugs back.

    Jade -- thanks, sweetie!

  6. ** I have another shoot scheduled for Friday.. **

    ** did I mention that The Villain is coming over tomorrow? **

    OH BOY... maybe you'll have residuals left over from "The Villain (swoons) for that Friday shoot?? So you have a nice little pink glow on that bottom for the new pics! If that fails.. time to find a photographer that TOPS! LOL

    I so wish I was closer to you - for those times you need a 'girls night' of wine and good conversation.. (smiles)

    I have an older version of Pagemaker that might still work on this new laptop.. and if that fails.. I've got PhotoShop Master Suite and InDesign and could drop that book right in to an already formatted template.. complete with pics interspersed throughout! (grinz) - I'm so glad you got it all figured out though.. and trust me, I know the headache and frustration that comes out of working with a new program!


  7. Zelle -- LOL! I doubt it, what with the way I fade immediately! (sigh) Seeing the photographer around 6:00 on Friday -- pink will be loooong gone.

    I wish you were closer too, dammit. Have a spectacular BBW weekend, OK? Don't forget to save up all the good details! :-D

  8. Damn.. that's right.. you fade faster than fountain pen ink! LOL

    Oh you can bet you'll get the nitty-gritty play-by-play of what I see happening at BBW.. just consider me your "first responder" .. the one that's going in to test the fire to see if it's safe for you to come experience next year. (smiles)