Thinking about writing as a business has made a big difference in my approach over the past few months. Ever since I started writing seriously, I’ve read articles and books to do with just about every aspect of writing. As you’ve probably gathered, I’m big on information. I also like new challenges. Lately, I’ve turned my mind to other things and have been studying how to:
1. Make book covers
2. Diversify my promo/marketing approach
3. Navigate social media effectively (still at sea)
4. Formatting books
I think it can only benefit writers to learn as much about the areas above as possible. I know writing is what we do best, but since I went indie, it’s become increasingly important for me to learn to do stuff like make covers and format books.
I’ve messed about with a cover or two and find that I like making banners and such—my semi-frequent header changes can attest to that.
My next challenge is learn how to format books. To date, I’ve read a half dozen different sources of information, including the free Kindle and Smashwords formatting guides, as well as a series of articles written by Susan Kaye Quinn.
When I first looked at the Smashwords Formatting Guide, I wanted to pull my hair out, but over time and after reading other articles, it now actually makes sense. Hurrah for me.
While time is always in short supply, I like having the option of knowing that I can do certain things for myself, if I’m so inclined. I’ve found that time I take away from writing to make headers and badges relaxes me while I’m enhancing my skills in another area.
Haven’t tested out the book formatting end of things yet, but I will. I have more confidence that I can do it successfully, barring a hitch or three, of course.
So, have you added to your skill set lately? If not, do you ever plan to learn how to do any of this stuff?