Forgive my exuberance, but this morning I finally broke through an ongoing problem I’ve been having with formatting one of my books. It’s been months, y’all. MONNNNNTHS.
First, very few of my books are published on Apple. Mainly because they’re jerks who don’t allow outside links other than a website. (Also, if you have written a book about, or one that takes place on, a certain Big River (ahem), then they will apparently send drones to your house via iPhone from their nearest Starbucks and annihilate your computer. Be ye warned.)
(But I digress.)
My plan for awhile now has been to widely distribute the books I have exclusive with Amazon once I’ve reaped all I can from Kindle Select, etc, but Apple has been a significant problem in this endeavor.
I found that once I stripped any non-websitey links from my books and re-compiled, they have, without fail, been rejected almost immediately by Apple. This has been an ongoing problem, but only fairly recently.
See, there’s now this thing called “Epub Check” where your book goes through a Third Party Validation site required by Apple to enter their Hallowed Halls. And LADY TENNANT, the first book I tried this with, kept getting bounced like an underage clubber with a bad fake ID.
The site will helpfully tell you why your book failed…but not really. It will give you the error reason, and even a page number and error location–and then a bunch of Spaghetti Monster language that doesn’t make any sense whatsoever. Even Google didn’t help. I’ve had folks who are veritable ninjas with the Java Script go “Heh?” and “Does Not Compute”.
This morning, armed with iced coffee and my Irish fully up, I was determined to nuke the formatting and start from scratch. And then, bleary-eyed and teeth-gritted, I started going through the file frame by bloody frame. Not a quest for the faint of heart, surely.
Then it happened. As I was ticking through the Compilation options in Scrivener, I clicked on something I don’t use and so never even looked at: Meta Deta.
And there, lo and behold, was a field populated with some random date formatting that looked AWFULLY familiar from my research into this Epub error.
I depopulated the field. I re-compiled. I uploaded the fresh file to Draft2Digital.
TAKE THAT, SPAGHETTI MONSTER! I mean, APPLE!!
In other news, you may have noticed I updated this here website. It was about time, as my book list was getting so long I needed to separate them into their respective imprints, Speculative Ink and Heart-Linked. Also, I wasn’t getting a lot from page navigation on the old site, so this site (I think) is cleaner and easier to use as well as read.
In Other other news, once I finish updating my old book files at various distributors and continue to tweak my site, I can begin revisions on Reliance #1, a book I’m REALLY, REALLY excited to release! This also means getting a sneak peak out to my Spec Ink newsletter.
Also, I’m going to be experimenting with Kindle Free Day ad stacking this week, using Keepers 4 as the guinea pig as it is nearing the end of its Select period. Then I’ll re-up for one more round and use what I learn to (hopefully) drive sales to the next book. By then I’m hoping to find out what’s going on with my publisher, Samhain. There are rumors of a buy-out, so best case scenario is they’ll give me the option of getting my rights back at some point.
Did I mention HUZZAH? 😀
- Complete and Release Reliance 1: Nearly done!
- Complete and Release Keepers 5: The plan is to begin drafting on May 1.
- Complete and Release Sweet Home 2: I’ll begin planning this one next month, for drafting in June.