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I got the proof!

I’m SO excited! Today I got the proof!

The proof print, physical book, that is…for my newest book on marriage, Stained Glass & Marriage: Reflections of Light & Hope by an Imperfect Wife.¬†

This is the 12th book I’ve written and this time I’m testing Create Space as the POD (print on demand)¬†printer¬†to self-publish my book. I wanted to make sure their books don’t have inferior quality to the company I’ve been using.

Stained Glass & Marriage book

So what’s the verdict?

The book’s glossy cover of the stained glass window is beautiful, just like I thought it would be. If you’re choosing between a matte finish and glossy, I’d encourage you to get the glossy. It looks and feels so much prettier and smoother. I love the cover!

However, some authors (or their readers) prefer the matte finish. There’s actually quite a bit of controversy over matte vs. glossy. Some people think glossy screams “self-published.”

buy my book

I disagree and I LOVE the glossy cover. It’s in your court; you decide what you and your readers like best. I’ve always lived by this maxim: IT’S YOUR BOOK. Why write and publish a book that you don’t even LIKE?¬†

man with caption

As far as the interior quality of the book (the pages, margins, text, pictures, etc.), I think the ink seems a little faded on the words in the text. It’s not as dark black as I’d like it to be. But it’s acceptable and it’s not going to stop me from using Create Space from now on.

The formatting inside the book is fine, which was one of my concerns. You want to make sure the formatting looks professional in both your print books and your eBooks.

If this is not your area of expertise (and it’s not mine), then I highly recommend you OUTSOURCE the formatting.

Keep in mind formatting for a print book is very different than for eBooks. Also, formatting for the Kindle is different than for the Nook at Barnes and Noble. You can find out more here.

When I was first starting as a writer, I didn’t have one of my books professionally formatted inside, and you can really tell a difference! (It didn’t look professional. I won’t tell you which book, though!)

Live and learn! Now I’m sure to hire professionals with each book I write and publish. I focus on my areas of strength and anointing from God: speaking and writing, and I outsource the rest!

woman on laptop

PUBLISHING TIP: Hire a professional formatter, editor, and graphic designer if you self-publish! You want your book to look as professional as possible.

A poorly written, formatted, designed eBook or book can get bad reviews and/or much less sales. 

Also as Christian believers, we want all we do to be done with excellence, because we are representatives of Christ.

I hired a formatter at Fiverr to format it specifically for print at Create Space, and a graphic designer at Fiverr to design the front cover, spine, and back cover specifically for Create Space. 

Some book snobs would sneer at me using Create Space and Fiverr. They compare Create Space to be the “Walmart” or “Dollar Store” of POD companies. But since this is saving my husband Ray hundreds of dollars, he’s not sneering at all.

Do I prefer to use my previous graphic designer, formatter, editor, and POD? YES! I love them and I want to use their wonderful, excellent services! But this time I’m going¬†a different route…and this way will make a dream I’ve had for three years now come true.

dream big

If this printed book had looked absolutely horrible and unprofessional, I wouldn’t do it. You just have to make sure you have the right people helping you at Fiverr! Hire people with high ratings and reviews!

Research all you can about Create Space. Talk to your author friends who have used them before. Ask questions. Create Space also has great customer service. They were very helpful and fast when I emailed them.

I’m VERY excited about this, as now it will be more financially feasible for me to get all 12 of the books I’ve written in PRINT–physical copies of my books that I can HOLD in my hands (like a baby!) and sell on the back table when I speak!

Jesus at wedding picture

After I wrote this book on marriage, at Amazon I saw a stained glass picture of Jesus doing the miracle at the wedding in Cana, turning water into wine, and ordered it. It arrived today, when my marriage book arrived. I didn’t think that was a coincidence, but very significant–like a confirming sign, a little nod, from God about this book and His purposes for it.¬†

The picture¬†is beautiful, although it’s much smaller than I thought it was. I believe it is a prophetic picture for my own marriage, that God is going to do a miracle of healing and restoration for us.

Stained Glass & Marriage cover

You can read the story about Ray’s and my¬†very painful, almost 23-year marriage in the eBook for your Kindle at Amazon, Stained Glass & Marriage: Reflections of Light & Hope by an Imperfect Wife, by clicking here.¬†

I’m going to hang the picture in our dining room. Today I’ve been doing the happy dance because now I can pursue a dream I’ve had for three years: getting all 12 of my books in print, physical books. Yay!

I’m working on proofing the print book, finishing the process at Create Space this week, and then I will let you know when it’s available for sale.¬†