I had a computer crash and lost my link to a CreateSpace formatter who had come highly recommended.

 

Can anyone here suggest some services that do an excellent job, both with the formatting and the cover?  I have covers, but don't know about spines and backs.

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Try luckybatbooks.com Cindie Geddes is the contact person.

Thanks, David.  Very nice of you!

I checked the web site.  They look like publishers, not formatters.  I want to publish my books myself.  At this point I don't feel like sharing with any more middlemen.

Believe me, I would never send you to an online publisher. (Though it looks like they offer that, too)

Lucky Bat Books is a full-service company offering covers, editing, formatting, whatever service you want (Judith Harlen does my editing for works under my David Miller pen name). You pick and choose what service you want, all at a flat-rate fee, (not a percentage of work or royalty bases or with giving up any rights).

Under author services, check out "Publish under your own imprint" for what they offer for writers like you and I who are are own publishers, and "Lucky Bat Books fees" under e-book Design & Publishing.

Hope that helps, and I get nothing for recommending them, I do my own covers and formatting (so far) but Judith has done great work for me as an editor and I know people happy with their other services.

Good luck

David DeLee

Oh, sorry, David. I should have known better. Will go now and investigate. Again, many thanks. It's always best to go with the tried and true.

Hi I. J.

I too have used Lucky Bat.  Everything David said is right on.  In addition I used them on formatting & covers and I was very happy.

Best,

Jed Power

Thanks, Jed. That's very good to know. I just dropped them an e-mail. Can't really get an idea from an hourly fee. In any case, I may try them with a short story for Kindle first. My formatters have gotten too busy to get to it before the end of December.

Getting back after some e-mail exchanges with Lucky Bat.  They sound professional and were very upfront with costs. Formatting for print will run 650.00 to 900.00 dollars!  This doesn't cover anything else.  Now I have to confess that is more money than I intend to invest in keeping my fans happy.  POD books don't sell well and I doubt I could recoup the investment.

 

On the other hand, checking the Internet, the going price for formatting for print seems to run below formatting for e-books, and 100.00 - 200.00 dollars seems average.  That I can envision.

Glad to hear they were professional and up front about cost. (Though I'm not surprised--it's one reason I hired them to do my David Miller editing). I will not question their pricing, or pricing for formatting in general, but I will say that it's one area I will not pay to have someone else do for me. (at least not until I'm making way more money).

All writers are different but I would urge you to try formatting on your own. It is not that difficult to learn and once you do, that's a zero expense item to your production line. (though it is time consuming especially for novel length works). I find doing e-formatting a breeze using Word, and all three majors (Amazon, BN & Smashword upload Word documants). The Smashwords formatting guide was quite helpful and the trial and error learning was pretty painless. Createspace interiors are a bit more daunting, and took me several tries to get it right, but they have great templates and after a few hours I understood what I needed to do. POD covers are a little bit more challenging and you need to learn Photoshop, InDesign or a similar program to get something that looks decent, but I've learned to do those too.

As I said, all writers are different and you need to do what works best for you, but for me, for right now, my only expense is the purchasing of cover art and a full, complete, deep, independent editor.

Best of luck,
David DeLee

Yes, David, I think you're right.  It's just that I detest reading instructions.  My brain boggles at them. I have been using both PhotoStudio and PhotoShop for my covers, and I'm still not good at it -- which means that I have to do steps over and over again until I get them right.

I have Word mss. and they tend to be very clean.  Over the years I've learned what not to do.  Formatters have a fairly easy time with my books,but I just can't bear the idea of having to learn something else.  Also, since there are months between books/stories, I'll never quite reach the practice level of professional formatters. I don't mind paying a reasonable amount for a reliable job not to have to worry about something else.

For CreateSpace it looks like I'll have to take a chance on someone unknown unless I come across some more recommendations.

Thanks so much for your input.

If you can find excellent POD formatting for $100-$200, it might be worth it just for the aggravation factor.  Sometimes though, you get what you pay for.

I definitely agree with learning as many of these publishing steps as possible though.  But because some of us old-timers are not that tech-savvy, I think it's better to learn as we go along.  Otherwise, it's easy to get bogged down in various parts of the process.  And that can be discouraging; something I try to avoid at almost all costs.

Hi, I'm only new to this site, but for what it's worth I agree with David's advice.  Spending some time doing your own e-formatting will save you a small fortune.  I've recently finished formatting my book for Smashwords and Createspace, it took a little bit of time, but following the online guides made it fairly simple.


Cheers

Liam Saville

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