Frank T Hogg

FREE eBook!

On November 11th I uploaded the updated and corrected version 1.1 of my book, "Yikes, you can see my underpants!" to Amazon. If you look at the Look Inside feature or download the Free Sample you will get version 1.1. But if you buy the book you will get version 1.0. Amazon is aware of this but has not fixed it yet and there doesn't seem to be anything I can do about it until they do. I am embarrassed that version 1.0 of the book with all those errors is still being sold by Amazon.

Therefore, I have decided to give everyone a free full copy of version 1.1. It has over 200 corrections and several pages of additions that I thought everyone had gotten.

If you haven't bought the book then please enjoy this free copy as my present to you. If you have bought it then please judge it and me by this version and not the one with all the errors

To read this eBook you need the information available here: Yikes, You can see my underpants!: Here is How to Buy and Read the Book

Please note that print copies of the book were always version 1.1.

To get your FREE copy just email me with the words, "Free Book Kindle" or "Free Book ePub" in the subject line. ePub is the format Apple, B&N and just about everyone else uses.

Thank you and have a wonderful Christmas,

Frank Hogg

Ah, the first day of spring is upon us…

Many years ago while suffering through yet another cold, dreary, snowy, miserable Syracuse New York winter I looked for a way to make it through. I decided that winter was a state of mind created by the devil or maybe politicians. (Please excuse the redundancy.) I decided that I could change my state of mind by redefining winter to something I didn't mind. 

I started with summer. As a kid summer was defined by school. It was July and August and then back to school. Two months is too short for a good summer. I thought about it and concluded that summer really started with Daylight Saving Time. That's when the days suddenly get longer and everyone feels good. Therefore my Summer starts with Daylight Savings Time.

What about Spring? The days start getting longer on December 21st, the Winter Solstice. From the 21st on each day gets longer so what better time to start Spring.

What about Fall? It follows that Fall starts when we go back to Standard Time.

So far we have Spring, Summer and Fall and if you've been paying attention you'll notice there is no winter. I'm fine with that but others said we should have a 'winter'. I don't have one in my calendar but to appease those who want a winter I would suggest Winter starting on Christmas morning or eve and ending on New Year's Day. For me today is the first day of spring, the rest will have to wait 10 more days, it's up to you.

My calendar for now through 2012

12/21/2011 First Day of spring
3/11/2012 First Day of Summer and Daylight Saving Time
11/4/2012 First Day of Fall and Standard Time
12/21/2012 First Day of Spring

Happy First Day of SPRING!

Thanks Apple, You're a class act!

A few months ago I got an email from Apple saying that the battery in my 6 year old iPod Nano could go bad and that I should send it in for a free replacement battery. I haven't had any problems with it but after hunting around a bit I found it and sent it in. There was speculation on the net that Apple might give new iPod Nano's rather than fixing the old ones but I kept my hopes low. Today Apple sent me a brand new iPod Nano for free. (They cost $129) Makes a nice wrist watch too.

Yee Haw!

Merry Christmas to me...

I never thought I'd be doing this!

I've enjoyed the warmer weather here in southwestern Virginia since I moved her from Central New York almost 4 years ago. There have been a few surprises I wasn't expecting. Several new species of bugs I hadn't seen before and the threat of snakes although I've never seen one.

The most noticeable thing for me was the grass, or what substitutes for grass in my lawn. During the summer I usually have to cut it every 3-5 days rather than the two weeks back in CNY. Of course the season is longer here so I have to start earlier and cut longer but I never thought I'd have to cut the grass on December 19th! I put the mower away weeks ago thinking I was done for the year but for the last week I've watched the grass get longer and longer and it became obvious another cutting was in the works. Oh well, I could always use the exercise and it wasn't all that bad. I'm pretty sure I'm done for this year but I don't know how soon I'll have to start again next year. Still, cutting grass beats shoveling snow any and every day.

Merry Christmas!

I Gave Up on the Kindle Fire

Let me first say that if you've never used an iOS device, an iPhone, iPod Touch or iPad then the Kindle Fire should work fine for you. But what the pundits refer to as its 'rough edges' just got so annoying that I stopped using it and sent it back. At first I thought that Amazon would, in time, get those rough edges ironed out but I don't know how long that will take, if ever. The problem for iOS users is that we know how this stuff is supposed to work and when we use something like the Kindle Fire that doesn't work that way it gets annoying. I don't mean differences in the OS. I mean things like having to exit the video that's playing to adjust the volume. And not knowing what the volume will be until you let go of the slider. Then if you go back into settings to change the volume that you just changed, it's not selected and you have to click it again. It's just too stupid to put up with. I also know that these things are small and can easily be fixed but there are so many of them that I don't know how long that will take. Also the Kindle Fire is running Android 2.3 while Android 4.0 is the current version. I don't know how long it will take them to get up to speed there either. Android users say the Kindle Fire is the most advanced Android device out there. If that's the case then Apple has nothing to fear as iOS 5 is heads and shoulders about what I've experienced with the Kindle Fire.

BTW The reason I told Amazon I was sending it back was because the screen was too bright and hurt my eyes. The brightness slider only works on the top 2/3 of it's range. The bottom 1/3 does nothing. I'm not the only one who noticed this. There is a application that Android users can get to correct this but it doesn't work well with the version of Android the Kindle Fire uses. That's another area that is annoying. I found that app but I couldn't download it from any Android store because they blocked it. It's annoying to know a fix is available but you can't get it because of restrictions Amazon puts on the Fire's Android store. It just got to be not worth screwing around with anymore. iOS devices just work and eventually the Fire will too. Maybe then I'll give it another shot.

Update: Rumor has it that Amazon will release a software update,"in the next two weeks" that will address, "some of the issues". The Fire, in my opinion should not have been released so early. I assume Amazon did it to take advantage of the Christmas sales season and they probably thought it was good enough for most people who didn't know better. But it tarnishes their image in my mind and I'll never buy any of their products before I know it's finished and really ready to use. I don't want to be a pioneer anymore. The old saying fits well here, "You can always tell a pioneer by the arrows in their backs."

Update 2: Read an article about the Amazon Fire's problems here.

Frank Hogg Book Reading Rotary Luncheon 11/30/2011

I did the first cut of the video and while it looks okay it also looks like it could use some more work.

Book Reading Video Coming...

I did my first book reading at the Radford Rotary luncheon last week and a video was made. I'm in the process or editing out the embarrassing stuff before I post it. :)

This would go much faster if I knew what I was doing but editing video is not my strong point. I hope to have it done soon for you to view.

The Kindle Fire, I think I'll keep it.

The Fire has been receiving a lot of press and for good reason. It's the first and likely only tablet that might rival Apple's iPad in the tablet market. But to be clear, it is not an iPad killer, not even close to that. But that's not what it was supposed to be. In my mind, it was designed to consume Amazon content, eBooks, music and video. It does that very well. It's a nice e-reader, it plays video nicely and I assume music too. But it wasn't designed to do all the iPad does. The iPad does much more and costs much more. Is it worth it? That depends on what you want it for and how much money you have to spend. If you can afford it, the iPad is the clear winner. But if all you want to do is the three main things listed above then the Fire works just fine. It does some other stuff, like games, email and web surfing, but not as good as the iPad. It is good for looking up something you just saw on TV while sitting on the couch. But web surfing is not it's strong suit.

If you are an iPhone or iPad user, you will find the Fire comes up short in many frustrating ways too numerous to mention. I assume that in time Amazon will fix these shortcomings or try too, but right now you won't think it's ready for prime time. 

If you are not a iPhone or iPad user then it will be fine, you won't know what you are missing and it will seem great. If you are an Android phone user then you are used to the shortcomings and rough edges of Android and it will be great for you too.

Plus it only costs $199 or $149 as I showed in a post below. I almost sent it back because I am an iPhone user and have used iPads a lot. I decided that because it does what I originally wanted it for, reading and proofing my eBooks, that I would keep it. I have managed to sideload (loading apps and data via USB) the B&N Nook app and a lot of other stuff and I think I might one day be able to sideload epub format eBooks for proofing too. I haven't pursued that yet.

The old adage is true, you do indeed get what you pay for.

My Book is Now Available from Apple

I've been a Mac user since 1984 and having my book available from Apple on the iBookstore is really cool.

Buy An Amazon Kindle Fire for $150!

I did this by accident. You may have heard that Amazon came out with three new Kindles. The first is only $79 and has ads. I felt it would be helpful for me to use the Kindle for proofreading because sitting at the computer screen for hours is bad for my back and a strain on my eyes.

I thought the Kindle Touch would be a better deal at $99 but 6 weeks ago the only one you could buy was the $79 Kindle. I ordered it and used it for a few weeks. I didn't like the fact that it was not a touch screen and I was planning to send it back to get the Kindle Touch. Then one of the ads that appears on the Kindle  had an offer to Kindle owners for a $50 credit for a Amazon credit card. I decided to get it.

That left me with a dilemma.

I had planned to buy the $99 Touch but now for only $50 more I could get the Fire. Never mind that I could also use that credit to get the Touch. It only took me a few hours to talk myself into getting the Fire for $150.

I've had it a few days now and for what it costs it is a good value. It's no iPad but it is good enough for what I wanted to do, actually better because of the larger screen. There is one other benefit for me. I loaded an ePub reader on the Fire and that means I can proofread in both Kindle format and ePub format. ePub is used by every other ebook seller including Apple and Barnes and Noble. That makes the Fire a better deal than the Touch.

However the Fire is a backlit LCD which is not as easy on the eyes as the eInk display of the other Kindles. But none of them could run the ePub reader. I've found that if I change the screen to white on black it is much easier on my eyes.

It's a lot of trouble to get the Fire for $150 but it would give you a chance to try the eInk reader first. You may like it better anyway. I can't say that that $50 credit will be there for you. You'll just have to take your chances.

Here's the details from the email from Amazon: (I actually got it for $149, but who's counting.)

Your Shipment Details items (Sold by Amazon Digital Services, Inc.):

  Kindle Fire, Full Color 7" Multi-touch Display, Wi-Fi 

  Item Subtotal: $199.00
  Shipping and Handling: $0.00

  Shipment Total: $199.00 
  Paid by Visa: $149.00 
  Paid by Gift Certificate: $50.00

Both Print and Kindle Books are on Amazon

Still no news from Apple but you can now order both types of book, print and Kindle from

Apple's iBookstore Coming Soon

Apple accepted my application for the iBookstore and I have uploaded the book. I've heard that it can take up to two weeks for them to make it available for purchase. I'll post more info when I get it.

Next I'm working on getting set up with the other eBook sellers. Turns out there's quite a few of them. This is tedious work that takes time from what I'd really like to do, writing. Once it's done it'll be easier for my next books.

I am making some headway on my second book. It's a travel book with a different slant then you would normally find. I don't have enough done yet to show but I'll put up a teaser as soon as I do.

Print Version Now Available for Purchase!

It's finally here! You can now order the printed version of, Yikes, you can see my underpants! here!

222 Pages of pure fun!

Product Description:

There was nothing special about Frank. He thought he was an ordinary guy, living an ordinary life until one day he discovered that wasn't true. This book relates some of his early adventures that show just how unordinary Frank is. A very pleasant, humorous, insightful and throughly enjoyable read.

Proof Came in Today

It looks great so I'll be working on making it available to everyone very soon. I'm very proud of the book and the way it turned out. Sometimes it's hard to believe I really did it.  I've been wanting to do it for so many years that it's almost anti-climatic now that it's done.

2nd Proof on the Way

After about 200 changes/corrections and additions the second proof of the printed book has been ordered and is on it's way to me. I should get it Monday and if everything is okay it will be available for purchase. (Yippee) One thing I've learned is that it takes roughly 3 times longer to proof and edit than it did to write it. While I'm waiting for that I'll upload the new copy, Version 1.1, to Amazon and B&N and then look into other book stores such as Apple. I can see why many authors let someone else do this work. I'm determined to follow through and decide if I want to do it this way for the next book.

Book in hand

I was surprised how neat it felt to hold my own book in my hand. Probably not as neat as a baby or anything like that but neat none the less. I'm going through it now for corrections and typos and I expect to send those off Monday. I'm hoping it will be available for purchase by weeks end.

A Large Milestone

I sent the book off to the publisher today. Well, actually I uploaded it. Anyway, they'll need a couple days to verify I formatted it properly and then I'll get a proof copy to check. Once that's done the book will be available in print form to order from Amazon and others.

During the process of reformenting it for print I also made some corrections and additions that I'll upload over the coming week. If you already bought it then the updated version (1.1) will be available for free.

I'll also be putting it on bookseller's sites such as Apple's iBookstore and others. I'll be very happy when all this is done so I can get back to writing which is why I got into this from the beginning.

UPDATE: I just received confirmation that proof copies are in process and should be here next week. That means I got the formatting right. That may not sound like much to you but the specs were a bit confusing and I wouldn't have been surprised if I got something wrong. I'm really looking forward to seeing my book in print, even if it is only a proof copy, it's still cool.

That would mean that the finished book could be ordered in about two weeks!

UPDATE 2: Less that four hours from the order confirmation I received a shipping confirmation. That's impressive as these are PoD or Print on Demand. They had to process the order, print the 5 proof copies I ordered and ship them, all in under four hours!

Almost There

At first I had this hope that I could use the same file for both the eBook and the printed book. Alas, such was not the case. I had to create a new file for the book because of the difference of fixed format or static format vs the dynamic format of an eBook. I'm going to go over it over the weekend and send it off to the printer Monday for some proof copies. I expect to have it available for purchase as quickly as I can turn that around. I won't guess but I think it is a quick process. Keep checking here for updates.

Moving Along

After much aggravation I have the book updated and reformatted. Now it's on to having a test print done to see how it looks. I'll be uploading the revised ebook later in the week. Everyone who bought it will get an automatic update. The very last page has a overview of what's changed or been added too.

More later.

So Much for That!

The week just flew by didn't it. My good news is I'm looking into a way to get my book printed by a company that is either owned by or works with Amazon. They do, 'print on demand'. The delay is I have to reformat my book as a pdf which on the surface doesn't sound difficult. I decided that as long as I was going to do that then why not add a few things to the book and make some corrections etc. Things escalate don't they.

I'm going to enjoy the fall foliage along the Blue Ridge Parkway this weekend and get back to it Sunday night.

Have a great weekend.

Good News Coming

I hope to have some good news later in the day.

Stay tuned...

Update: Hmm, too optimistic, make that later in the week.

Now Available At Barnes & Noble!

For all you NOOK fans my book, Yikes, you can see my underpants is now available at B&N.

Remember, you don't need an actual NOOK or a Kindle to read my book. Both B&N and Amazon have free stand alone apps that let you read eBooks like mine, right on your computer screen.

Help is on the way

A number of people have been having trouble with the instructions for getting the Kindle app or using the Kindle Cloud reader. I'll put together a step by step guide in the next day or so that should ease that problem.

On the Nook front, Barnes & Noble still hasn't gotten the book up on the site and I don't know why. I sent an email Thursday asking what's wrong and hopefully I'll get that cleared up soon.

Kindle or Nook? Which one is best?

I went to Staples today and looked at what they said were the new Kindle and Nook. Not the case as it turned out. Then I went to Barnes and Noble and looked at the Nook there. It seems that the Nook Touch and the Kindle Touch are almost the same thing. It depends on where you want to buy your books as to which one to get. B&N also had an older model on closeout for $89 but it's heaver, has a white bezel and less battery life so I passed on it. I suspect B&N may do a price adjustment to match Amazon's new Kindles so I'd wait a bit if you can. Either way I'm sure you'll love whichever one you decide on.

Emails Flooding In...

I sent out the official notice about the book and emails have been flooding in. I hope that's a good sign. :)

I'm still waiting on Barnes & Noble to make it available. I uploaded it last Friday and they said it would be 72 hours at most. Amazon was just 24 hours. Go figure...

Now Available on Amazon

You can get your very own copy of Yikes, you can see my underpants! on Amazon!

I'll have detailed information about how to read it if you don't have a Kindle but the simple answer is to down load a Kindle app for whatever device you have, be it Mac, PC, iPad, iPhone or Android or other compatible device. Then you just register the app with Amazon. Then just click on the buy button on and it will be sent to your device immediately.

This is the Cover for my new Book

It's UP on Amazon!

Not that you can buy it yet... I just got the confirmation that they have it for review and I should know something in 24-48 hours.

I discovered something really nice. When I first uploaded it I noticed it had to convert the file. That made me wonder if it would convert an ePub file and it did! That saved me multiple steps as now all I have to do is export it from Pages as an ePub file, same as for everyone else, and then upload it to Amazon. Very nice.

Now what?

While I'm waiting for news that it's available for purchase I've put up an 'Extras' page here for some things that I had to leave out of the book. Pictures and so forth. It is on the right side of this page. I would have liked to include them in the book but I couldn't verify the copyright and had to leave them out.

Amazon and B&N cover about 85% of the eBook market with Apple a distant 3rd at about 8%. Still, that's a sizable market that I can't ignore. I hope it's a lot easier putting it up there than it appears to be. Hell, only one way to find out. :)

It's UP on Barnes & Noble!

It's been 20 years in the making or 66 if you consider that's how long it took to get to this point in my life. Next up is Amazon which I'll tackle over the weekend. Every eBook seller in the world uses the ePub format... Except for Amazon. They use the 'mobi' format. It didn't sound like a big deal because there are converters that convert ePub to mobi, but guess what? Sometimes things don't look quite the same coming out as they did going in. So I have to take the ePub I uploaded to B&N and run it through the converter and see what didn't come through right. Go back to Pages and make some changes. Export that to an ePub file. Run that through the converter. Load that in the Kindle app for the Mac and see if it made it. If not then go back and start over. That should sound frustrating and tedious and it is. After I upload this to all the bookstores on the net I'm going to look into what others have done and see if there is an easier way to do this.

And it all sounded so simple and easy when I started... :)

I'll keep checking and will announce it here when it is available.

Self Imposed Deadlines... Suck!

My eyes are crossing from staring at the screen far too long.

I signed up with Barnes & Noble and have the groundwork done to upload the book there as well as Amazon. I've fixed all the formatting issues so I'm ready... I think. I just know there's some glaring error somewhere in the 55,000 words that will embarrass me no end. I've noticed that the mind, especially a tired one, looks at an error and sees what was supposed to be there. I guess you just have to say enough is enough and let it take wing and hope it all turns out okay.

I will keep to my schedule to have it uploaded at either Amazon and/or Barnes&Noble by midnight Friday.

Or I'll come up with a really believable excuse.

Darn Near Done

Finally! I've got the book done except for a few small formatting issues that shouldn't take long. Of course that's what I said a couple weeks ago. This time is different and I really am almost done. I'll spend Thursday fine tuning it and I will upload it on Friday to Amazon. Then I'll do the same at Barnes&Noble. Together they cover 85% of the market with Apple bringing up a distant third.

Much to my surprise and displeasure Apple is the most difficult to deal with. They are third and not trying very hard at all. Apple is usually on top of these sorts of things but Amazon and B&N have them beat hands down. Both of them have apps that run on my Mac to read their books. Apple doesn't and that's amazing. I have to use the B&N Nook reader for the Mac to read Apple ePub books.

Apple requires that I go through what they call an aggregator, a middle man who takes a piece of the royalty just for uploading the book. That rubs me the wrong way too. The short answer is putting my books on Apple's iBookstore is low priority. Just get the free Kindle or Nook app for your Mac or iPad/iPhone and get the book there for now.

I'll put all that info in a page on the right side after I get the book uploaded.

Amazon says it will take up to 48 hours before it is on their site for sale. You can bet I'll be having a party when my book goes live.

Great News for eBook Users

One of the reasons to go the eBook route is cost. With print books costing $20 or more, it doesn't take long to pay for the cost of Amazon's Kindle eBook reader. Today the cost of the readers have come down to just $79! The new Kindle is light weight and compact. The links below have all the tech info you might want.

This is my next has a good rundown on the new Kindles. TWiT does a number of tech video shows.

It's All Wal-Mart's Fault

I was really cooking today, getting a lot done, when Wal-Mart slowed me down.

2 1/2 years ago I bought a TV from them and I went for the extended service policy. That is the first time I've ever done that. I don't think they are worth the money...

Until last May.

My VIZIO TV developed a vertical line on the right hand side and I called for service. Five months, two replacement screens and the problem wasn't fixed. They decided to replace the TV. A fellow from Wal-Mart called and said they had a nice new Toshiba that was better than mine and would I like it. He gave me the model number and I went to Wal-Mart and BestBuy to check it out. Nobody seemed thrilled with the Toshiba. The sales people at Wal-Mart gave me two model numbers for a VIZIO simular to mine and a more expensive LG.

I thought Wal-Mart would likely give me the VIZIO but I gave the guy both model numbers to check out. He said he would send me the VIZIO and I said sure, I was happy. I would have liked the LG better but I couldn't ask them to give me a much more expensive TV than the one I bought the service policy on. The guy said they would ship it out and I'd have it in a week or so.

Three hours later he called back and said the VIZIO was out of stock and could he please send me the LG instead. I said okay and he thanked me. I was really happy now and went out and bought a lottery ticket just in case.

Told you that to tell you this... (Ron Thomason of the Dry Branch Fire Squad said that.)

The TV came today and it is head and shoulders better than the old one and it was free! Well, I had to buy the original service policy for $80. But I got an brand new $800 TV for that. I'm going over to Wal-Mart and buy a service policy on the new one.

And that's why I didn't get much done on the book today.

Monday Blues

I thought I was done with the innards of the book but alas, I'm not. Some formatting problems that I was sure were fixed, weren't. So a little delay here, a little delay there, adds up. When I'm not doing that I'm trying to decide the best way to upload it to the various ebook sellers. I'm going to concentrate on the big dog for now, Amazon. I'm still hopeful for a Friday upload.

Cover Blues

Yesterday I took a day off and went with friends to see two plays at the Barter Theatre in Abingdon. They were very good. The first was Cabaret and if I had known what I was in for I would have taken my binoculars. We were in the balcony and my eyesight isn't as good as I would have liked it to be. So, I went with what I could see and used my imagination and it was nice. The second was The Road to Appomattox, a Civil War story. Both were excellent and a nice break from toiling over a hot keyboard all day.

Today I'm struggling with the cover for the book and I'm just about ready to do one with crayon and call it done! I've got something that looks decent and I think I'll go with it for the next few days. I'll revisit it before I publish the book later in the week. I know that all the experts say a good cover is really important and all. But at some point you have to declare it done and move on. I'd much rather write than do this anyway.

Onward and upward...

Tough Day

I was working on the book cover when my phone rang. It was Jacky, my neighbor up the street. Ronda, my neighbor across the street's dog had been run over by a car and was laying in the road in front of her house. I went to the living room window and could see the little dog laying there, unmoving. My neighbor up the street was at work and couldn't do anything so I said I would take care of it. I went across the street, stopping to check on the dog and it looked like it was sleeping. No evidence that it had been run over but it wasn't breathing and I knew she was gone.

I knocked on Ronda's door and she was very upset and I really didn't know what to do. I'm a guy and guys really aren't well suited to deal with this kind of thing. She told me that the Radford Animal Clinic would take the dog but she couldn't do it. She was pretty broken up and that is something I can understand. I've had many cats that lived long lives and it was traumatic when the day came to put them down.

Ronda got a towel and I grabbed an empty box and went out to get the dog. I kneeled down on the street and wrapped her in the towel and carefully put her in the box. I noticed her neck was broken but I couldn't see anything that would tell me how it happened. Because the dog was laying in the road the assumption is she was hit by a car. But if that was the case the driver didn't stop. That makes me think the dog might have run into the side of the car, maybe chasing at the tire or something and somehow that's what did her in. Because there was no blood and no evidence a car ran over her it's likely the driver never felt anything and didn't know it happened.

I drove the dog over to the Animal Clinic and they were very compassionate and caring and said they would take care of it and if Ronda wanted to do anything she could call.

I went back to Ronda's in a feeble attempt to console her by telling her what I found out and what I thought might have happened. The broken neck meant the dog died instantly and didn't suffer. I'm not sure I consoled her much because as a clueless guy I stood an equal chance of making it worse than making it better.

It's never a good day when death is involved but, sad as it is, death is part of life. It makes me realize that every day is precious. I'll miss seeing that little dog wagging her tail at me from her front yard. Everyone in the neighborhood will miss her too.

Moving forward

I made good progress on the formatting front. It's tedious because after I think I have it formatted properly I have to export it as a ePub and then load that into iTunes and sync that with my iOS device and check it. Back and forth I go. I'm down to just a few tweaks and then the fun really starts as I have to check it on a Kindle device. I don't have the actual Kindle so I'll use the Kindle app on my Mac and hope it turns out okay.

The other issue I'm pondering is the cover. Most advisors make a point of doing a good cover. But the darn icons are so small on Amazon and on the reader that a lot is lost. For my testing I just increased the font size to 96 and it is readable in the small icons available. So, is it better to have a fancy colorful cover that nobody can read of not. I'll play around with that after I get the formatting issue resolved.


It was a whole lot more fun writing this book than doing the grunt work of getting it formatted and ready to be published as an ebook. What I'm finding is that there are several standards for ebooks which I kinda knew but didn't pay much attention too. The other problem is that the technology is a moving target and information as little as six months ago no longer applies. But you have to slog through all of that before you're up to date.

I used Apple's Pages program to write it because it has an ePub output option. I figured no sweat and just went blindly ahead. It turns out you have to do certain things before you start writing, setting up the proper styles etc. I didn't check into that until after I did all the writing. Grunt work, just grunt work. However, I'm still on target to upload it by next Friday and I'll make that deadline.

My next fun project is using a graphics program to create a cover page. Interesting conditions. It has to be readable as a small icon. Look at Amazon's website for ebooks and you'll see what I mean. They display two sizes, one in list view and a larger one for the page view. Some of the book covers are unreadable in those small sizes. I bet they look good on a paper book but not on Amazon. And they don't look good in your ebook reader either. In hindsight it might have been a better idea to come up with a shorter title for my book. Live and learn.

The next one will be much easier.

Down to the wire

I'm in the final stages of getting Part One ready to upload to Amazon and others. I'm shooting for the end of this month. If it was a print book it would be about 200 pages, but ebooks don't have pages in the conventional way. It depends on the device you're reading it on. Part One covers the years 1948 to the 1960's. There will be an overlap with Part Two which I'll start in October with the hope of getting that done by the end of the year. I'll know how much that covers when I write it. I've learned with Part One that it gets unwieldily after 175-200 pages. 

The limited time promotional price for Part One will be just $0.99.