In publishing my latest short story collection, I encountered what I imagine are very common problems with formatting. Kindle demands a sort of “one-size-fits-all” format from the text so that it is highly malleable. It is exasperating to format in word only to put it in the Amazon Previewer and have it completely distort the text. And then even when you think it looks great in the Previewer, once it is actually up on Kindle, it changes again. I’m sure this has exposed me as a rank amateur.
From a creative writer’s perspective, a big advantage to self-publishing is that it potentially offers all kinds of alternative forms for storytelling.
One of the stories in my collection, entitled The Big Event, is about a grandiose wedding experienced entirely through the lens of social media. I experimented with Facebook, Twitter and email style formatting.
What I found in trying to include this story with the rest, was that Amazon simply was not having it. Knowing very little about #self-publishing, I looked around at other possible self-pub options, but most forums said the same thing: that if you wanted any success at all, you were eventually going to have to put it on Amazon.
So I got around it by setting up a Google doc that could be publicly shared and included a link. As far as I know, when you get to this section of the text, you can click on the link and it will take you to the doc. I am so curious if this worked for people and what their experience was trying to read a narrative in this medium. We are so used to absorbing information in this way, but we never think of it as a “story”. If you did, I would really like to hear from you. If you are similarly experimenting with different forms and styles and have found a platform that works better, please hit me up.
And if you really don’t have the patience to buy my shorts for a whopping 3 bucks, I am going to give you #theBigEvent for free. You can read it right here:
Please note that this material is copyrighted and may not be reprinted without my consent. Enjoy.
To check out my collection of short stories, The Brunt, visit: http://www.amazon.com/dp/B00MN2QRTG