Have you been using Canva? I absolutely love it! Not only did I use it to create my book cover, graphics and related marketing materials, but just created my own QR Code to link you to the book page on Amazon! Check it out and let me know if it works, and tell me what you’ve been doing on canva.com too!
Tag Archives: inner healing
Publishing (A First-Timer’s View) in 19 Easy-ish Steps (LOL)
As my faithful readers know, my forthcoming novel, A Bent Tree Path, is taking a long time (understatement of the century) to prepare! It’s with beta readers now, and I recently finished the cover (stay tuned). So, just to delay things a bit more, I decided to take a side trip. I created a guided journal for inner healing, partly because it will be a great accompaniment to the novel–which is sure to stir up all your deep-seated emotions and make you want to not only cry but also get healing for yourself–and partly to gain experience publishing on Amazon KDP with a smaller piece. Here’s a brief view of how things went the last few weeks:
- I opened an account at Canva.com
- I created the document pages, playing with Canva’s cool text boxes, graphics and such. Fun!
- I downloaded the document as a pdf with bleed and flattening
- I opened a free account with Amazon KDP, navigated to Bookshelf and clicked Create.
- Once I read through options and uploaded the book pdf file, I received their template for dimensions and layout of the cover.
- I went back to canva.com and created the book cover design by uploading the KDP template, placing pictures (used the free resize option found in my existing software to increase pixels!) and text in the right places, and then deleting the template from the design.
- I downloaded the cover, saving it in as a pdf with bleed and flattening.
- Once uploading this to KDP, they generate a preview. I waited, filed my nails, got a drink of water. . .
- Voila! It showed up. I previewed it, making sure everything lined up within the margins. Yup.
- I ordered a proof copy and waited some more. This was excrutiating; like 5 days.
- I excitedly opened the box (see video of this momentous occasion in my last post)
- Then I went back to step one and made corrections, repeating the process until I was happy enough to “SUBMIT”
- Then I waited again.
- Oops, KDP said 36 hours later, your journal is a low-content book, not a mid-content book, because it has lines for the reader to fill in.
- “No!” I said in an email reply. “I put a lot of effort into the content! I didn’t just post lined paper. This is good stuff! Life-changing stuff! Did you read it or just let a computer decide?” (Okay, I didn’t exactly say it like that)
- Then, realizing it was a NO REPLY sort of email, I swallowed my pride and went back to step 6, choosing “low-content book” instead, which meant adding my own ISBN and barcode (which is available at bowkers.com) to the right spot on the back cover, downloaded the new cover, and resubmitted it on KDP.
- Again, waiting. It is in draft form, waiting for approval by Amazon machines/people–who knows?
- I checked it three, maybe four times a day, and decided to blog this little ditty while I wait (yes, I am still waiting as I write)
- And of course I’m researching more on marketing, author page, and other fun options Amazon offers and checking out beta readers at Scribophile.com
I’ll post again as soon as that book, My Road to Recovery, A 12-Week Guided Journal for Inner Healing, is approved! And I assure you, even though there are lines to fill in, because what good journal doesn’t have lines to fill in, it is not low-content. It is content that I’ve lived. It is content I’ve practiced with others. It is content that is therapist-approved. It is easy to read, and, unlike many other how-to books, it doesn’t repeat itself every other page. Those books, you know, the ones that tell you the same thing over and over again, and by the time you’re half-way through, you realize there’s no point in finishing it because you got the point on the first page? Yeah, those should be low-content books. This one is concise, reader-friendly, and oh-so helpful for anyone who is hurting inside and doesn’t quite know why. Or for anyone who knows why, like the #metoo experience, but doesn’t quite know how to work through all the pain. Because recovery isn’t just about knee surgery and addiction. Recovery is about getting back what someone else took or damaged. And that, my friends, is entirely possible. Especially if you have the Power of Love in your life, and especially if you get, and read and journal through, this book. (Sorry, had to get the plug in).
By the way, if you’d like to be a beta reader for parts of The Bent Tree Path, either comment on this post or email me. I’ll do swap beta reading for you too. I’m at jtwHeart2Heart@yahoo.com. Please don’t spam me. It will only annoy me and detract from my precious time creating books for the world. I won’t send money for your dear Aunt Sally or help you transfer your billions of dollars from India. I won’t even click to see why you sent me that video you think has me in it. Sorry not sorry.
With all my heart!
Joan T. Warren
P.S. My publishing company is getting a website, too. It’s not finished as of today, but will soon be another way we’ll share health with the world. It’s called A Book to Grow On, LLC. Let me know if you find it in WordPress!
Faulty Fault Lines–When Bad Things Happen to Little People
Janie smiled through her tears and put her arms around Stella.
“How do you do it, Stella? You always seem to find a way to help me put things in perspective when I get like this. I wish I had your confidence! I wish I could stay on top of things the way you do; you never seem to let people push you around, yet you’re not a bully either.”
Composing herself after at least thirty minutes of crying and talking, Janie now felt better. She sat back in her seat and picked up her coffee mug, her favorite mug, which she loved for its heft, its shape and its ability to channel those amazing aromas right where she needed them most. She felt now that she had some good ideas about how to tackle the problem. “Really, Stella, how DO you do it? Were you just born this way?”
Stella sipped her coffee, too. She loved it when someone took the time to ask her deeper questions. Though she’d never broadcast her life or push her opinions, she felt deeply rewarded when she was able to help another. It was as though all her troubles were worth it.
Well, Stella divulged, “I wasn’t always as I am today. One of my old trademarks was that I used to think everything was my fault–and nothing was my fault!”
I was quick to apologize for anything someone else was unhappy about, as if I were responsible for the world, but slow to see things that actually were my responsibility.
Rain on your wedding day? I’m sorry. Mad at your boss? I’m sorry. Lightning struck your Uncle Milford? I’m so sorry. You’re home from work early and hungry because you didn’t stop for lunch and I didn’t have a premonition about this and fix your dinner early? I’m sorry. Here, let me drop my work, mid-sentence, and get right on that.
Then, on the other hand, nothing that I really did was ever MY fault!
Oh, I’m late for work? Well, boss, it’s not really MY fault. I had to make breakfast for my family, get the laundry started, stop what I was doing every time someone couldn’t find their socks, walk the dog when everyone left without doing it, stop at the store so there would be coffee in the break room, and then drive my aunt to the dry cleaner–yes, she had an emergency apparel deficiency.
Geez, why can’t my boss understand that, doesn’t she have a family? I would think.
Stella smiled as she animated these stories. They were true for her, she had lived in that realm for so many years. She looked at Janie, who smiled back, waiting for more of her story.
Well, after about two or three THOUSAND people said I shouldn’t apologize so much, I slowly started to think maybe there might be something wrong with me (Oh, and I’ve been sorry about that too, two or three thousand times).
But what could it be? I thought. What’s wrong with being nice? I’m empathetic, dedicated, loyal, helpful, sensitive, compassionate, considerate. . . What’s so bad about that?
Plenty! Well, actually, nothing, as long as that’s REALLY what you are. Peel away the nice facade, though, and what did I find? The real reason I had such a hard time recognizing what I was truly responsible for. . . the real reason I defended myself when I truly was responsible for doing something wrong. . . the real reason I tried so hard to be so nice, empathetic, dedicated, loyal, helpful, sensitive, compassionate and considerate. . . was my inner wretch!
Underneath it all, I felt completely ashamed of who I was. I was a wretch.
Wretch, according to Miriam-Webster:
a miserable person;
one who is profoundly
unhappy or in great misfortune
II was miserable on the inside. I felt as though I were less than everyone around me.
Why would a young woman (yes, I was young once), with such admirable qualities feel so miserable inside? I was living out of a self-concept that was seriously flawed.
If you said I was pretty, I’d say, “Yeah, pretty ugly.”
They both chuckled.
“I know what you mean,” Janie offered. “I never in a million years would have guessed you felt that way about yourself. You’re beautiful, and you seem so confident.”
Thanks; it’s true, though. I felt ugly on the inside because I bought into some seriously wretched lies about myself when I was a girl.
Where did those lies come from?
What it boiled down to, after digging deep into the soil of my innermost thoughts and feelings, is that the lies came from trying to figure out why bad things happened to me.
READER WARNING: From here we will talk a little about those bad things. If you’re feeling brave today, click for more–