Proofing your Book

Vanity Killed has been uploaded and I’m waiting for the “proof” book to arrive shortly.

First, let’s do the Last Clichés:

Have the Upper Hand—To be in a controlling position or dominating. This has been around since the 15th Century. It’s derived from an ancient gambling game where each player in turn puts one hand on a stick, beginning at the bottom, and the last one able to put his hand at the top wins. See Miles Coverdale’s translation of Psalm 9:19.

Throw a Monkey Wrench in the Works—To sabotage a plan or operation. In Britain, the monkey wrench, called an “adjustable spanner” reminded someone of a monkey’s jaws, which loosely resemble the sliding jaws of this very useful tool. This name was acquired about the middle of the 19th Century. Not until the early 20th Century that it became associated with sabotage. This idea first appeared in print in 1920 in Philander Johnson’s story, Shooting Stars. This phrase caught on in America and was adopted in Britain as well, but it was in the form of throw a spanner in the works.

Second Nature—A deeply ingrained habit that makes one behave as if by instinct. This is very old – used by Plutarch, Montaigne, and other early writers.  Modern version dates from early 1900s. See The Confidential Clerk, T. S. Eliot (1954).

Don’t Lose your Cool (Cool It)—To calm down. This is a slangy Americanism and emerged about 1950. It caught on rapidly. Came from the usage of “cool” to mean calm and unflustered. See E. Gilbert, Hot and Cool, 1953. Related expressions: keep one’s cool=remain calm, antonym= to lose/blow one’s cool= losing one’s composure.

How many did you find?

I went to a J.A. Jance reading and she said that the Indians always said you should have at least one mistake in what you do, because only the Creator is perfect.  I thought that was very interesting.

So, did you catch the mistake in my last post?   “Because wants you upload it…” try: once.

And those are the kinds of mistakes the will make or break you in publishing.  When you finally get your cover and manuscript uploaded into CreateSpace, you order a proof of your finished book. You can get a pdf, digital and print on demand copy. I did all three. The POD costs less than $10.00 (depending on the size of your book) to have one shipped to you. Then you read the book from cover to cover and look for mistakes. All kinds of mistakes, because you don’t want to be in the same boat as those who don’t look for mistakes, because they think they are perfect.

Hopefully you’ve gotten wind of my blog that tells you how to and where to go to learn to create your manuscript and book for self-publishing. I had to read my blog from 2013 to remind me what to do to publish. CreateSpace has detailed, step by step instructions for you. They will give you the inside track on how to succeed.

Follow their instructions and no matter how many times you have to, re-edit, re-edit and re-read and re-read your book to avoid mistakes that will make your book amateurish, do it.

Keep Writing and Reading,


Preparing Your Manuscript for CreateSpace

I’ve been working on Vanity Killed and getting it ready for publication.

Last Clichés:

Blissfully ignorant (or ignorance is bliss)—Sometimes it’s better not to know your outcome, or fate. The idea was stated by Greek playwright Sophocles (c409B.C.) It was also quoted by Erasmus in early 16th century. However, the precise wording comes from the closing lines of Thomas Gray’s poem, “Ode on a Distant Prospect of Eton College” (1742)

From Stem to Stern—Entirely; from beginning to end. Nautically, stem is an upright at the front (bow) of a vessel and stern is the back end. This counterpart of “from head to toe” and “from soup to nuts” was quoted by the Roman writer Cicero as a Greek proverb. In English, term was used literally from about 1600 on; figuratively soon after.

Take a Leap out of my (someone’s) Book—To follow someone’s example; to imitate some person. Literally, this phrase alludes to either vandalism (tearing a page from a book) or plagiarism (copying someone’s work). Figuratively, this dates from about 1800. B. H. Malkin used it in his translation of Gil Blas (1809).

So, how many did you find? Send me an email or leave a comment to let me know.

Since I supposedly have the upper hand here, let’s me tell you how to prepare your manuscript to use in the CreateSpacetemplate of the book size you decided on. I use 6 x 9 and have downloaded that template into my computer.

In my doc. file I have used “justify” text to type in. I’ve also picked my font style for my book as Garamond and converted my doc file to another one from the New Times Roman I usually use. Also, you need to know that the paragraph indentations normally are .5. However, for the book, you need to have them at .2. Sometimes you can use .3, depending on the size of your book and the font. So you will need to change all the paragraphs. Also for the book at this time, each first paragraph of every chapter should have no indentation. Also there is a double space and no indentation of the first paragraph of a scene change. Before you paste your manuscript into the template, you need to make sure that the above is corrected and ALSO you need to have your manuscript single spaced and with no spaces between paragraphs. You can go into the paragraph section in word and make sure you mark single space, the indent for first line to .2 and there is a box that says: don’t add space between the paragraphs of the same style. You must check this box.

Since you don’t want to throw a monkey wrench in the works, you cannot “select all” and copy and paste your manuscript into the template. You have to put it in chapter by chapter and paste by hand. For some reason the “select all” changes something in your manuscript. Even when I did this, I had problems. My font changed from Garamond to Calibri and the size also changed.

Don’t forget to have your quotes and apostrophes in smart quotes. If they are not, you can select “all” and change them to smart quotes. However, you will have to check these as for some reason, some of them went in backwards.

In your template, you need to check that your book is in uniform. This uniformity should become second nature. What do I mean? This pertains to a fiction novel: All your headings should be in the same font and same size. All your manuscript should be in same font and same size. If you use: Chapter 1, then all should read same, but if you use CHAPTER 1, ALL SHOULD BE IN CAPS. Remember, there is only one space after a period to begin the next sentence. Also, all your spacing’s down from the Chapter heading to the first paragraph should be the same. All in uniform.

Make sure all double hyphens are changed into an em dash and between numbers is an en dash. Ellipses have no space after the word and the ellipsis, but after the ellipsis, there is a space, i.e. but… really.

After you get the manuscript into the template and like you want it and save it, then you publish it as a pdf. Then you upload the pdf copy intoCreateSpace interior of your new book.

Now don’t lose your cool because it has taken me days to complete my manuscript, publish it in pdf format and upload it. I’ve uploaded it several times! Because wants you upload it, then you can use CreateSpace’s neat tool for review. Then you find mistakes and start all over.

This is tedious, but well worth it, because you get the manuscript exactly how you want it and it will look professional. Or of course, you could just have someone do the interior for you. My book designer Debora Lewis at does that for a small fee.

Keep Writing,



Interior reviewer for CreateSpace

Proofing your Book


Using CreateSpace to self-publish

I’m in the process of publishing my next novel Vanity Killed.

But first, last week’s clichés:

Get back into the swing of things—To take a very lively part in, To become active. This is a 19th century change for the phrase in full swing (which means already very active in something). In full swing dates from 16th century.

Eat my Hat—To declare readiness to consume headgear if a statement should prove false, an event should not occur, etc. Of course it’s presumably remote that you would not eat your hat, and the analogy that the event would not occur, etc. would prove false. This appeared in Dickens’ Pickwick Papers (1836).

Champing at the bit—To be eager to get going, to express impatience at delay. To champ= bite, chew, or grind upon since 16th century,–precise origin is uncertain. Comparing the cliché to a racehorse chewing on the bit at the start of a race—anxious to be off. This term still used literally in 19th century. Washington Iriving, 1820, Sketch Book. Used figuratively in 1900s.

See You Later—Goodbye. Loose phrase (might not intend to see a person in future) dates from the latter part of the 19th century and has been widely adopted as farewell. Children popularized it in rhymes – See you later alligator, and went into a song by R. C. Guidry in 1956 in film in Rock around the Clock.

How many clichés did you find?

CreateSpace has templates you can download to copy your manuscript into for your book. They have one for every size book you can think of. And if you are blissfully ignorant they give you detailed step-by-step instructions. CreateSpace will guide you from stem to stern in the process of creating your book from cover to cover.

You need to decide what font you want to use, what size font you want, what size book you want, and make sure your manuscript is complete. Not just your story, but the typing, unless you want to hire someone to convert the interior for you, which my book designer, Debora Lewis at does, too.

However, if you want to create the interior yourself, take a leaf out of my book, and follow my blog and I’ll let you know exactly what I did to do my interior for CreateSpace. Go to CreateSpace and they have detailed guides to creating your book you can read up on

Next week, I’ll give you the details on what I did to create my interior.

Until next time,

Keep Writing,


proof editing your book


Cover Design and Edit

I’m back. After a grueling working summer—not on my novels—I’m back to writing.

First—Last Clichès:

Full of Piss and Vinegar –Quite aggressive, very energetic. This is not a very nice cliché (piss refers to urine, used to be acceptable language, but no longer is) dates from mid-1900s. Mickey Spillane used it in Death Dealers (1966).

Finishing touches—The final stroke(s) that ensure perfection or completion. This is taken from painting (the last stroke of the artist’s brush) and was transferred to any creative effort, ranging from baking to sewing a costume. Dates from mid-18th century. Eric Partridge concluded it became a cliché within 100 years.

Get Cracking—Get busy, hurry up, begin. Originated in Great Britain in the 1930s, crossed the Atlantic during WWII. Crack=”more fast”-dating from the late 19th century. Often is put as an imperative.

So, how many did you find?

Well, I’m trying to get back into the swing of things. I contacted my new book designer Debora Lewis, She’s created my new web banner, a facebook banner, my e-book cover, my POD front and back cover, and is working on my bookmarks. She also prepares the inside of your manuscript, getting ready to self-publish if you’d like her to. I highly recommend her, and if you don’t think she’s great, I’d eat my hat.

My editor, Ana Manwaring of JAM Manuscript Consulting is champing at the bit for me to get Vanity Killed published. She’s written me a glowing review and can’t wait to publish it on several media outlets.

Therefore, I’m busy proofing my manuscript and will go to CreateSpace and set up my new novel.

Until then, see you later, and

Keep Writing,