First of all, I have two thoughts about this whole digital publishing process:
I hate Microsoft Word
I love Scrivener!!!
So, to start off this whole venture--much different from physical publication, I must add--I forced my way through the Smashwords Style Guide and fought Microsoft Word tooth and nail to get the darned thing to format properly for an e-book.
It wasn't a pretty sight. The document was a mess, and with my mind still very stuck in the 'it must look good on the pages' mindset (only applicable for a print book), I got nowhere very fast.
So, I started again. And eventually scrapped the terribly botched copy of what used to be my beautiful print manuscript.
This went on for a solid week and was even more frustrating than formatting for a print book. In frustration, I took a 'break', wondering if I'd ever even go back to do it or pay money to have someone do it for me.
Seriously, I was that upset with it.
Normally, I find it much more satisfactory to set the book up myself (editing is a different story because of the nature of it), writing, formatting, the whole nine yards. Of course, I did extensive research to make sure it would look professional, but it saved me a lot of money that would've been spent paying many people to do the work for me, and it gives me a much greater sense of accomplishment.
I didn't just write a book; I formatted, (helped)proofread, (helped)edited, wrestled with Word to make the e-book work...I did everything I was possibly able to! And to me, that's an even greater accomplishment than just writing a book, though don't get me wrong, writing a book is hard. It also takes a lot, and I mean A WHOLE INSANE LOT of work.
But I digress. The point I'm really trying to make here is I. HATE. WORD.
At least, I hate its formatting. I don't think I could've ever gotten this e-book done with all the junk it threw at me.
But then I found this absolutely wonderful program that has been laying under my nose the whole time: Scrivener. I'd heard of it from other authors, but never actually what it did.
It does everything, people. It's like a writer's personal workshop and it's the single most important writing tool I have ever used.
Anyway, when we saw it converts to Kindle, I decided hey, let's give it a try. Gotta be better than the mess Word made of my document, right? Besides, there's a free 30 day trial...
2 days later [one simply to figure out all the incredible stuff the program does], the Kindle version is complete and looking as beautiful as the print version!! I am so relieved and excited that it's finally done! :)
It's now on Smashwords and is in review for Amazon...should be live tomorrow at the latest. :) Yay, so exciting!!! And then I'm getting the physical copies in a couple days!!!!!! :D