Christine said she was willing to talk about anything, so today I’m tossing her some questions about why she’s decided to put Searching for a Starry Night in the Kindle format and how in the world she did it. (This sounds incredibly intimidating to me! Does it to you?)
After her answers, I’m throwing open the Comments section for questions or Howdies to her.
Welcome Christine Verstraete.
Hi Helen, thanks for letting me visit your blog today.
1. The idea of formatting an e-book and getting it ready for the Kindle seems overwhelmingly intimidating to me. Was it a big learning curve for you?
Intimidating is putting it nicely. Haa! Well... I learn by doing — and doing – and... I did it over several times as I couldn't get rid of a multiple-blank page problem. It finally corrected though I ended up with one extra blank page and decided to leave it at that.2. What made you decide to go with Kindle, instead of some other e-reader like the iPad or Nook?
I began by trying out a short story, "Motherly Love," on Smashwords to see how it would work. The directions there are pretty good and straight-forward though I have to thank fellow author Marian Allen for putting up with my numerous questions.
Smashwords says, "simple is better." How true. I did the same formatting for Kindle (pasting story first in notepad to "erase" extra "invisible" formatting, using single space, and a roughly 0.33" or 27 px indent on first line.)
I wanted to start on Kindle first, hearing such rave reviews from other authors like J.A. Konrath and Robert Walker, who've had great success with it. I haven't found that pot of money at the end of the rainbow yet, but I'm still looking! (lol) I will be putting the book up on Smashwords next since it handles conversion for all the different sites (Sony, Nook, iPad, etc.) I don't think I want to do the formatting for each site individually. I know my limits. Ha!3. Searching for a Starry Night, A Miniature Art Mystery, has a beautiful cover. Were you able to use that for the e-version and how difficult was the cover to put up?
By the way, readers should note that you do NOT have to buy a Kindle to read the book or other stories. Amazon has a free Kindle for PC version. (which I have on my computer.)
As I don't own the cover for the original print version, I decided to make a new cover for the electronic version and an upcoming new print version using another view of the Dachshund photo which resembles the dog "Petey" in the book. He's always been an attention-getter so I decided to use him much bigger on the cover. He makes me laugh!4. How will you be promoting Searching for a Starry Night as an e-book?
Besides doing this blog tour, I'm active on several writing lists and hope to attend some local conferences. There has been such a big growth and interest in eBooks and Kindle online, so it'll be interesting to see what readers have to say in person.5. Do you think e-books are becoming more popular with kids?
I hope so. Having grown up with computers, kids are used to reading stories and lessons on the computer in school. I plan to talk with teachers to get their views and talk with them on their interest in using eBooks in their classroom lessons. I do have a lesson plan with possible questions for teachers to use as well.
Helen, thanks for hosting me! I'm looking forward to answering any of your readers' questions.
Thank you, Christine!
Here are some great links for Christine:
* eBooks page
* Searching For A Starry Night on Kindle
Plus, Christine is having a contest during her tour:
**CONTEST: Anyone commenting on any of the blog stops on the tour can win:
* One person who comments on any of the blog tour stops will win a free Kindle copy of Searching for a Starry Night. (You can download Kindle for PC free here.)
* One person will also win a miniaturized dollhouse collector's edition of the first chapter from the first print edition, made by miniaturist LeeAnn Borgia. See my blog for links and photo.
** To celebrate the revised Searching for a Starry Night, one person will win a copy of the new print version when it is available.
Clearly, the more comments you leave, the better your chances of winning, so here are links to her other stops:
Blog Tour Schedule:
Thurs, 7/22: Acme Authors Link - Real vs. Fictional Friends
Mon, 7/26: Morgan Mandel's Double M blog = Dogs and Such
Tues, 7/27: Killer Hobbies with Camille Minichino - Crafts and Writing, what comes first?
Weds, 7/28: Marian Allen's - Talking about Writing
Thurs, 7/29: Helen Ginger, Straight from Hel - Getting Kindleized
Fri, 7/30: J.E. Taylor's blog – Writer's Quiz and Other Stuff
Mon, 8/2: Killer Crafts & Crafty Killers - craft how to with Anastasia Pollack – Writing and Crafts: Make Easy Miniature Cloth Decorations
Tues, 8/3: L. Diane Wolfe, "Spunk on a Stick" – Making the Switch from Nonfiction to Fiction
But before you zip away, leave a comment or question. Christine will be stopping by during the day.