Sunday, December 2, 2012

Dec. 2 - Dec. 8, 2012 Discussions

The bulk of my comment for Sunday, December 2, 2012, was about my efforts to produce the Kindle version of my book.  It's going to be a LOT of work.  But, I think I can be done a lot earlier than the planned release date of January 7, 2013.  (Many of the scientists I contacted about the book told me they were waiting for the Kindle version.)  

Kindle provides a means to review your book on a simulated Kindle Fire screen before you actually put it on sale.  The conversion process produces a lot of errors.  It changed quote marks that I'd copied and pasted from some PDF file into A's and @'s.  So, "covered with blood" shows up on the Kindle screen as

                      Acovered with blood@

I'll try doing "search and replace," but it's going to take a lot of work to find every place where that happens and fix it.  Apostrophes are also sometimes changed to equal signs:  husband=s 

I'm also trying to figure out the right image size.  Every book reading device uses a different screen size.  I'm being told that 5x7 is the evidently the best ratio.  So, I'm going to try using images that are a maximum of 5 inches x 7 inches at 100 dpi.

Kindle says the "maximum" image size is "127 KB," and 5x100x7x100 = 390 KB or 390,000 bytes.  But, if pictures are "too large," Kindle's software converts the image to the "right size" and produces excellent results.  Here's a sample page from the previewer:

That image of Ivins in his lab wasn't in the printed version of the book where all the illustrations were in also in black and white.  But, Kindle Fire allows color images and so do a lot of other reading devices, so I'm adding the above image and several others to the Kindle version, and I'm using color versions of the B&W images that I used in the printed book. It doesn't cost anything to add images or use color, and the extra color images add a lot of "value" to the Kindle version of the book.

Meanwhile, a reporter from my local paper will be stopping by tomorrow to do an interview for a "feature" they plan to write about me and my book.  It will be the first real publicity I've gotten for the book.  Without publicity, only the people who read this blog and my web site will know the book exists. And, of those, supposedly only about 2 out of every 100 actually buy books.

All I can do is produce the best book I possibly can and hope that some "word of mouth" will get the sales rolling.


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