I am actually in the process of correcting the formatting on one of my eBooks, and have recently uploaded a corrected copy of Red Mojo Mama – my first book.
Here’s what happened to me. I published Red Mojo Mama, bought it and checked the first 10 pages or so and everything looked fine. So, I let loose a sigh of relief and closed the book for a couple of months until I had to re-open it to research something. This time the search took me into the second chapter – and there I found it. My paragraphs were all messed up.
I turned off my Kindle and thought, “Oh, no!” – figuring I would return on the weekend and figure out what had gone wrong and how to fix it. Part of me, suspected that it was just my Kindle, because I’d seen this same problem on a few books I had bought from authors who have obviously sold several hundred copies of their books.
See, I’d sold nearly 100 copies without a comment from anyone. Oddly enough, it was a few days later when a very kind man mentioned it to me after reading, and liking, Red Mojo Mama. He told me what was wrong and from the goodness of his heart, offered to fix it for me. I took him up on it, offering to be a beta reader for his next effort. During the process, he was giving me tips. Unfortunately, unlike publishing a paperback on Amazon, Kindle publishing does not offer an opportunity to review before clicking on the "publish" link.
Now, I find I have a few corrections to make to one of my other books (only discovered after reading 53% of the book) and have yet to double check book 3.
I suspect this is the by-product of that profound relief we authors feel when our baby has finally gone to press and being a newbie at the process. Let’s face it; there aren’t any definitive guides out there for how to e-publish. There are more than a few that point this or that out, but nothing that covers the whole spectrum. I’m also instructions-challenged. My head spins uncontrollably when I read instructions, unless I’m currently in the process. I have to have my hands on the thing I’m trying to put together, from tri-cycle to IKEA furniture to eBook, in order to understand instructions.
I struggled with myself whether to tell the two authors I can think of that they need to fix their eBooks. With encouragement from my helpful friend, I’ve decided to do so. More importantly, I realized I needed to write down this experience and share it.
In the meantime, a very thoughtful tweeter, Mimi Barbour, wrote up the instructions and I’m passing along her blog post link below for those who need them. I’ve already made use of her kindness and highly recommend you stop by her blog.
Mimi Barbour's Twelve Steps
I figure if Indie authors stick together and help each other, we will improve the overall perception of our collective product and thereby, help all of us sell more books.