A Little Progress After a Very Emotional Week

It’s taken a good week to clear my head after the tragic shooting. How close to home it was – I nearly lost my daughter and son-in-law, my grandchildren could have been parent-less – in ways that would have changed my life dramatically. I keep the deceased in mind, but I also keep reminding myself that two-hundred seventy people there that night lived. It has changed my life. I went to the vigil downtown at Lake Eola. I felt surrounded by compassionate people, yet feared the very crowd there to offer support.


I already have some social anxieties. I despise small talk with superficial people. Small groups of twenty or thirty don’t bother me, but crowds of hundreds of thousands make my knees weak. There were over 50,000 at the vigil. We were on the far side of the lake, but could still hear the speakers and the music. The music touched me deeply and made me cry. But I wasn’t the only one. I’ve never seen so many people in one place crying so many tears. To hear the talk, it wasn’t simply the forty-nine lost, it’s the direction of the nation that makes people sad. And then, there were the many tears of joy in seeing so much support.

Today, I am back at my computer and working on getting my files resubmitted to CreateSpace. I’ve chosen a template, though it wasn’t ideal, I think it will work. The fonts for the suggested “Mystery/Thriller/Suspense” genre called “Edgy, Bold and Unexpected” were way over-the-top and looked more like sci-fi. I went with one under “Modern, Clean and Contemporary”. I’m not impressed with the scene break fleuron, three small blocks. I won’t have chapter titles, just large numerals placed off to the right side of the chapter pages. Under this package, you’re not allowed to change anything, substitute fonts, fleurons or lay-outs in any way.


I liked the lay-out and fleuron best under one of the “Edgy, Bold, and Unexpected”…but the fonts were all wrong. The “Steelfish” font of the option I liked best was just too futuristic.


I guess it’s trade-offs to get it done as simply, affordably, and painlessly as possible.

I’m only allowed one interior image, so I’m using my Book Imprint image on the title page. I won’t have an author photo. I use my initials to publish in order to prevent people from instantly being turned off by a female author. No need to have the author image there. Anybody wants to know, they can go to my author page or see my image on Amazon. My bio is a bit generic, but I do mention my husband.

My husband is also mentioned in my dedication this time. He’s been super supportive.

I have a special acknowledgement, then there are more acknowledgements in the back.

I’m waiting now for a couple of endorsements from other authors who have read the book. Those will go on the back cover, or front cover depending on what the cover designer has to say. He’s eagerly waiting in the wings. Of course, I have to acquire the page count and specs from finishing the interior before he can make the spine to the necessary specs.

I submitted interior files to CreateSpace, but had a blank page with the words “blank page” written on it. They rejected it and told me to correct it. Hmmm…I was like, “You can just delete that and move on?”, but apparently the file owner has to make all the changes with this package. I had some page breaks to add also. Hoping this one goes through.

It’s progress.

The nice thing is that I am finally to a point with this where I feel comfortable starting the next project. I’m torn between two stories as to which to produce next. One involves an ecological issue concerning Reedy Creek (a man-made creek Disney started when draining swamp land) and murder and the other missing persons. Either book will carry over some on-going material from the first book. Though the missing persons story seems like it will be more fun to write, the ecological issue/murder really takes precedence in the story arch.

As things are falling into place with Naked Alliances, I’m feeling a strong sense of relief. It’s been a long haul. I hope you enjoy it half as much as I enjoyed writing it.

33 thoughts on “A Little Progress After a Very Emotional Week

  1. I know it’s been a very unsettling time for you, Susan. I thought of you several times during the week. Good that you’re back at the computer and moving ahead on that front.

    1. Starting to normalize around here. Mama and daddy took the older kids to Lego Land Saturday. It’s way out past Haines City far from Orlando. I kept the little one. It was a nice distraction and wonderful time spent with her. She’s such a sweetie-pie.

    1. I used their custom design program for my last book. It had a much more complex lay-out. I was not impressed, took eight months of back and forth with them, but I thought as simple as this lay-out is, surely they can’t screw it up.

        1. Using their simple service instead of their custom design is a lot easier. They offer ten templates and you chose one. With custom, they have no examples to show you of what they can do. They take your words on what you want and try to accommodate. Their interpretations and misunderstandings, and pardon me…flat out ignorance was appalling.

  2. I have thought of you often since Orlando. Before too, of course, but more often since. It’s unsettling to think of you there, but then it’s everywhere. Sending hugs. You have taught me a new word: fleuron. I’ve never heard of it before. What a sweet word for something I was always making up names for!

    1. Thank you for thinking of us. Me, too. I kept referring to it as scene break mark. When I had so much trouble with CreateSpace before, I looked it up and found fleuron. When I used that word they still didn’t know what I mean. I asked for a linear line with a slight wave to it and they gave me a baroque, round flower…what about “Linear” could they not understand? It was an uphill battle. I said, “Never again.”

      1. That doesn’t surprise me. I am always happy to learn new words and feel that there are more words in my word bucket. But the reality is the bucket is shrinking because fewer people know more than a bare minimum any more. Not to be pessimistic, but realistic? I’m sure your book will look great when you are done with it!

  3. When I told Derek about your daughter and son-in-law, he was as shocked as I was, and thankful they’re okay. As I watched the coverage on the news about the vigil, I had a feeling you’d be there. What a moving experience that must have been.
    I’m happy you’re back at work. xo

  4. I’m sure the vigil was extremely emotional, Susan. I would have been in tears too. I frequently have to channel back my empathy or it can completely overwhelm me. I’m glad you’re refocusing and forging ahead with the book. I’ve only ever done one indie print copy but it went very smoothly. I’ll be looking forward to you release. It sounds highly original!

    1. It was more heart warming than breaking, but yes, very sad. Even with my social anxieties I felt as if I was with like-minded people. Everyone was nice. Thanks for the hugs. Much needed.

  5. I’m so glad you went to the vigil. Crowds always freak me out and I avoid them even at the best of times. So I really appreciate how you parked and then walked and considered your space. It sounds like it was a healing experience, although for so many, the wounds might never completely heal. Good luck with CreateSpace. I’ve yet to try anything like that so it’s good reading about your experience.

  6. I’ve been thinking of you. The whole thing shook me, but I’m sure it was much worse for you. I’m glad it helped to be at the vigil. Good luck with the book. That is so crazy with the fonts and templates.

  7. I was shocked by the tragic shooting, even though it was so far from where I live. I can imagine the vigil was very emotional.
    I’ve just finished formatting my book for createspace and now have a proof copy in my hands, which I’m reading carefully before I publish.
    I did all the formatting myself with a template I made and I didn’t find it too difficult, just time – consuming.
    Good luck!

    1. I would have loved to been able to do that, but don’t think I have the patience for it. I’d likely end up with a product I preferred if I did it myself, but I cringe with all of the new technology and the learning curves I’ve had to master.

      Yes, it was a lovely vigil and so very sad. I noticed it trended on Twitter for a couple of days and now there are a few articles here and there as everyone expresses their opinions on the matter. Shamefully, I don’t see anything being accomplished to prevent this sort of thing from happening again and again.

  8. Despite being on another continent, I could feel those bullets ricochet about that room, I could hear the cries and I thought of all who were there, I thought of my own precious daughter, the pain cause there will last the lifetime of the survivors and the loved ones.
    My older son, the big jock, would take his dates (his friends did this too) to the gay clubs in San Francisco and Sacramento (where we were living at the time) as the women felt safer there and they all enjoyed dancing…

    1. Us too. We go to the Parliament House because the people are so very friendly and entertaining. I never have to worry about guys pestering me or trying to start trouble. Their comedy shows are a real hoot.

      The first responders are talking about how hard it was to hear all of the familiar ring tones of family trying to contact their loved ones in the aftermath. The pain of this incident will last a long time and affect many. So sad. Thank you for coming by and the follow.

  9. Susan, I’m glad you stepped out of your comfort zone to attend the event, especially since it seemed to be a healing experience for you.

    Best of luck with your new book. I haven’t tried anything like CreateSpace, but it’s great to get a taste of how it might work by following you.

    1. I did not have a good experience with it the first go around, but that book was complex and using the custom design process was tedious and time consuming with miles and miles of room for error and misunderstanding. I wasn’t willing to go there again and used their simple design process for this book which has no parts, no intro, no conclusion, no handwritten letters to print…just a basic lay-out of the chapters. I’ve already received word to upload my manuscript two more times. Once, for having the words blank page written on a blank page (they couldn’t simply delete it) and again, because I didn’t have page breaks after chapters (which is something I thought they would do since they are formatting the book).

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