It’s official, I am a one-person publishing company.
Welcome to ROSALIE ASH, Inc. Mad global publisher. I’ve had a major breakthrough this week. MELTING ICE is not only on sale as an Amazon Kindle e-book, and will soon (internet publishers willing) be on sale as an EPUB and a MOBI and whatever else it takes to get it to wider e-audiences, it is now a proper, printed book. It is sitting on my bookshelf looking all shiny, new, and enticingly pink and blue.
I feel elated, excited, proud and just ever so slightly insane. It’s the daily uphill struggle to achieve my goals that is driving me round the bend.
So this morning, huddled in my study in front of the halogen heater (I do have central heating but there’s a Siberian wind rattling the French doors), I’m holding a group discussion on work in progress. Yes, basically, the stress of it all has brought on some kind of multiple personality disorder. I am talking to myself and chairing an imaginary board meeting. (Shrugs).
My Financial Director sits tight-lipped, arms folded. ‘Forget the Profit and Loss Account. Let’s just call it the Loss Account. You spent HOW much getting that proof speed-delivered by UPS from America?’
My IT Executive clearly hasn’t slept recently and has developed a twitch. She starts to babble at me, ‘I’m still hopeful of getting MELTING ICE onto Itunes, but without a MAC it’s really complicated, and I’ve hit another obstacle with Allromanceebooks, they want the cover formatted to exactly 200 x 300 pixels and I can’t do it, not even in Picasa, and on Lulu the EPUB version I tried to upload had formatting issues and they’re getting back to me in 2 – 4 working days, but meanwhile they’re saying that your ISBN cannot be re-used, even though you bought it yourself and paid good money for it (Financial Director sniffs loudly), but the good news is at least the print version is finalised with Createspace, even though it’s taken over a month and I forgot to justify the margins and put in page numbering in the first proof, and their template for the 5.5 x 8.5 trim size didn’t work and after at least ten hours of cutting and pasting all 70,000 words it threw the text all over the place in the online proofer, and I finally managed to google page numbering in Word 7 on how to start Page 1 on Page 6 of the manuscript, and…’ She breaks off and starts to sob. ‘Get a grip, do the bloody job, or you’re fired!’ I snarl, Alan Sugar style. Well, self-publishing is a cut throat world.
On a lighter note, My PR executive has turned up as Bubble from Ab Fab, dressed today as that manic little sparkler waving princess from P. 262 of the novel (yes my print version book now has page numbers and everything!) She gushes, ‘I thought we’d run a publicity campaign in the local Press, with a competition, I just need a photo of you in Barbour and green wellies, balanced on a five-bar gate clutching a pile of your books…’ OK, we’ll get right on to that when it stops snowing.
My Sales & Marketing Director, meanwhile, has morphed into Mrs Doyle, standing behind the door of Father Ted’s sitting room with a tray of books. ‘Will you have one of these lovely books, anybody? Only £7.40 on Amazon Prime. Oh go on, go on, go on, you will, you will, you will…’
But I suddenly realise that there’s an empty chair where the Creative Writing Director should be sitting. Uh oh, I can guess what’s happened there. She’s knocked off early again and gone to the pub for a long liquid Patsy-style lunch. Damn it, who is revising the original classic THE GYPSY’S BRIDE for e-book publication in the near future? Who is inventing the next gripping scene of BREAKING VOWS, book two of the Roundwell Farm Trilogy?
I panic-text my psychotherapist/editor. ‘Get a grip, write the bloody books, or you’re fired!’ she texts back.
I can see she has a valid point.