A temporary caution about my new book

Friends, I know many of you are waiting for the release of my prison chaplaincy memoir, which is in progress right now.  However, I’d like to ask you to please be patient for a few days longer, while I get all the bugs ironed out.

I’ve just spent four hours (!!!) trying to upload a ‘clean’ copy to Amazon’s Kindle store.  It’s been a very frustrating exercise, even using their recommended word processing software.  Using their preview mode reveals that tabs end up zooming across more than half the page;  carefully aligned text isn’t;  italics disappear where they’re wanted and appear where they’re not;  and my carefully crafted and hot-linked end-notes appear to have minds of their own!  This book’s formatting requirements are far more complex than my first two novels, and as a result it’s much more difficult to get it uploaded correctly.  (Also, let’s be honest:  the Kindle format works very well for novels and simple formatting, but it’s not yet at a point where it can handle greater complexity very well.  AFAIK, no e-book format has yet reached that level of sophistication.)

I think I’ve got things roughly sorted out, after no less than ten cycles (so far, this morning) of correction and uploads, but I’m not yet sure.  I’ve also got to get the print edition loaded on CreateSpace, and working correctly on that platform.  Therefore, even if you see the new book appear on Amazon.com, please be aware that there may be formatting problems and other issues right now.  I’m in the process of dealing with them, but I have to actually have Amazon’s converted Kindle file in my hot little hands to see what mistakes it generates, before I can fix them.  That’s very frustrating, but there’s no other way to do it right now.

Please hold off on buying the book for a few days.  I’ll officially launch it over the weekend, once I’ve got all my ducks in a nicely formatted row.  Look for an announcement on this blog at that time.  (Amazon will also inform any early purchasers that there’s a newer version of the book available for download, so they won’t lose out – but I’d as soon you avoided that frustration!)

Thanks muchly.



  1. Jumped over from MCA Hogarth's blog, and was caught by something you said here:

    "AFAIK no e-book format has yet reached that level of sophistication."

    Epub does, but not all ereaders support all the features of epub. (AFAIK, no ereader supports all the features of epub; they each lack support for different features.) I'm aware that may not be helpful.

    The Mobileread forums– http://mobileread.com/forums –are terrific for practical ebook help; some of the regulars may have advice on how to arrange your book to do most of what you want it to, even if you have to use alternate methods.

  2. I have three works up on Amazon-Kindle. I had so much difficulty trying to get them to format correctly that I gave up and included an author's note to that effect.

    That's a lot easier to do, as you've said, when it is fiction and nobody expects tables of contents or indexes,

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