Getting it wrong, first time, every time…

Today I was forcibly reminded of why people used to like my user manuals [back when I was a tech. writer]. Because I always managed to get things wrong when learning a new software program, I always assumed that anyone prepared to read a user manual would be the same, only a little less sanguine about making mistakes [after all they had paid for that piece of software, I hadn’t].

Sadly, my enormous capacity to make mistakes is not quite so welcome now that I’m trying to publish my first ebook. The only silver lining I can see is that, if I ever get all this sorted, I’ll have a lot of material for a post on how to use StoryBox to produce a Kindle-ready ebook.

Not that any of this is StoryBox’s fault. Nope. The fault lies with Word’s Track Changes, and my own ignorance of how this useful feature actually works. 😦 For example, I worked out how to delete my editor’s comments, but I had no idea I was supposed to click accept, or reject, for each small change she made to the manuscript. The kind of changes I’m talking about are little things, like adding commas. I grew up in an era when we didn’t put commas before ‘and’ and ‘but’ so there were a lot of commas required. Another thing I did not know was that turning Track Changes off does not in fact, turn the feature off, it only hides it.

So, after doing all the final edits, I thought my MS was ready to be imported back into StoryBox as an .rft [rich text format] file. Imagine my horror when I fire up StoryBox, import my MS and find a million commas underlined!

Before I go any further I should explain why I need to import the MS back to StoryBox in the first place. Okay, so I wrote the story in StoryBox because it’s a great tool for the actual writing part of things. Then, when it was time to edit the MS, I had to export the file to Word so my editor and I could use the Track Changes feature.

So far so good. The problem, however, is that I want to publish my MS on the Kindle, and it just so happens StoryBox has a wonderful feature that allows me to export my MS as a .mobi file with ease [.mobi is needed for the Kindle]. However to do that, I have to first re-import the edited file back into StoryBox. The only other alternative would be to duplicate all those edits in the original StoryBox file. Hah. Not bloody likely.

To cut a long, sad story short, I’ve wasted most of today learning from my mistakes. Tomorrow I will cross all my fingers and toes while I import the ‘clean’ MS back into StoryBox. If all goes well, I will then be ready to work out the next step, which is the ISBN. -sigh- And some time after that I will have to face the pitfalls of creating a cover image for the book… [Insert sounds of disgust and frustration.]

As many of you know I’m normally a glass-half full type of person. I’m hardwired to see the good in any situation, but I have to be honest and say that, just at the moment, my silver lining is looking a little tarnished. I really, really think it’s time for some mindless fun, so mmo, here I come!

Meeka signing out.

 

 

 

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About acflory

I am the kind of person who always has to know why things are the way they are so my interests range from genetics and biology to politics and what makes people tick. For fun I play online mmorpgs, read, listen to a music, dance when I get the chance and landscape my rather large block. Work is writing. When a story I am working on is going well I'm on cloud nine. On bad days I go out and dig big holes... View all posts by acflory

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