Where You'll Find Me

I'm currently running my blog over at WritersAfterDark.net. I'd love it if you stopped by and hang for a bit! I'll return the favor, promise!

Running two blogs gets a bit difficult, so bear with me while I figure things out. In the meantime, if I could interest you in industry news, writing tips, and poking some fun at writerly problems, you'll find me here:

Monday, November 9, 2015

Guest Post: Formatting Your Book by Jessica Therrien

I'm so excited to have Jessica Therrien over my blog today! We're celebrating her new release: REDEMPTION and she's sharing her knowledge on formatting our own books . . . I don't know about you, but personally I get my brain twisted in knots at the thought of this daunting task. Luckily she has great tips in this department! Read on!

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Hello all! Thanks for stopping by, and thanks to S.K. Anthony for hosting me today!
For those who don’t know, I have a bit of a unique publishing experience. After being traditionally published, doing most of the work, and reaping little of the benefits, I decided to get my rights back. My author friends and I had the brilliant idea of publishing under the same name (or imprint) Acorn Publishing. This means, we share a logo, and are a part of a select group of authors that support one another, but we each maintain our own rights, make our own money, and control our own projects! (If you’re interested in joining Acorn Publishing check out our website: www.acornauthorservicesandpublishing.com)

That being said, this time around I didn’t have a publisher taking care of all the technical stuff for me. I had to learn to navigate the world of self-publishing.

One of the scariest monsters I faced was formatting my books for print and e-book. I felt like it was this big complicated secret, one I had no idea how to unravel. I imagined pages of code and expensive software. In reality it’s so easy I could do it while making dinner, juggling two kids and a hungry hubby…oh wait, that’s what I did.

Let’s start with print. You can format for print in Microsoft Word. Mostly it’s a matter of changing the page size, margins, line spacing, etc. The most important factor is adding section breaks instead of page breaks after each chapter. This allows you to have a different first page, which eliminates the header from your chapter title page. I won’t go into too much detail, but the point is, this should not cost you money or be out of your realm. I learned everything I know from DIYBookFormats: http://www.diybookformats.com/mswordtemplates/ (the videos are invaluable).

As for e-book formatting, I have to admit I totally cheat. If you haven’t heard of Draft2Digital (www.draft2digital.com) than you’re in for a headache free cup of awesome. They basically take the file you make for print and convert it to epub (NOOK e-book) & MOBI (Kindle e-book) for you. Then they distribute those files to all the book retailers (Barnes & Noble, Apple ibooks, KOBO, etc.) and pay you through direct deposit to your checking account!

For those of you who already know all of this, good for you! For those who don’t, I hope I’ve helped to ease your mind in terms of moving forward with your precious Manuscript. You’ve worked hard, and it deserves to be a book J

Don’t be discouraged by the unknown, and don’t pay someone hundreds of dollars to do something this simple.

You can do it!!

 Lead Council member, Christoph, is dead by Elyse’s hand, and Descendants have begun to emerge, exposing their secret to the world. Some see this as the prophecy come to fruition, but the prophecy caries a heavy consequence. It was never meant to be as peaceful as most had hoped.

Humans and Descendants struggle to live together in a world that isn’t ready for such a change. America is divided. Those who glorify the supernatural race believe Descendants truly are the gods they claim relation to. Others see them as a threat.

When Elyse gives birth to the next generation oracle, she sees one final vision—war. The destruction of the country’s major cities, and the end of America as we know it.

After her daughter is born, Elyse finds herself without the ability she needs to predict the future. Desperate to save the world from such conflict, she puts her faith in the hope that Descendants are the key to survival. After all, they have the power to supply a broken society with the means to survive.

Only from the ashes can a new world be born.

GOODREADS | AMAZON | BARNES & NOBLE (Links available soon)


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And if you have a few minutes, run over to her blog and read the first few pages of Static! Thanks Jessica for the sneak peek to my book! :)


  1. There are some good conversion services, both paid and free, for ebooks. However, traditional publishers use Adobe InDesign for formatting print books and it's leaps ahead of using anything else, especially Word. I've heard bookstore managers say they can tell when a book is formatted in Word because the program just isn't designed to do book layout and messes up things like justification.

    1. I've heard of InDesign. Personally I can't tell the difference. It's great there are multiple options for people out there.

    2. The program used to be about $800. You can now "rent" it from the Adobe Cloud for $20 a month with automatic upgrades. (A huge savings.) It looks so much more professional and once you learn it, you will be amazed at what you can do in InDesign!

  2. I'm sure I'd figure it out but glad I don't have to!
    Congratulations to Jessica.

    1. Yeah, it takes a little figuring out, but it's nice to have the control...for me at least.

  3. I wondered how people got their books formatted. It sounds like this could be a big help to a lot of self-published authors.

  4. I've done some basic ebook converting from Word to MOBI. It takes me a while, but I can work it out. However, when I have a manuscript that's going out into the world, I beg a professional to do it for me. Safer that way!

    1. I thought it would be safer that way, too! I just ended up having to email that "professional" a thousand times for changes and eventually got fed up with needing someone's help. It's nice to be able to change things on my own.

  5. That information is reassuring and something I worry about. Thanks for sharing. I had to grab a copy of your book too, That premise sounds awesome.
    Juneta Writer's Gambit

  6. Awesome tips indeed! I also recommend you check out the Reedsy Book Editor, as it's a free tool that automatically exports both EPUB and POD files. Here's a good post on how it works: https://blog.reedsy.com/how-to-format-a-book