Category Archives: Inside Information

Adventures In Formatting A Poetry Book

Guys, I was in FORMATTING HELL last week!!

Poetry is a beast messily slain for I had dull spears to fight with. 😛

One dull spear being the editing one, because I have legit never really edited poetry in my life. Sure, I sometimes change a line or two, but I’ve never rewritten that crap before. It was a good experience though, and I learned some things, mostly about myself. Lol!

Creatively speaking, things have been at a standstill the last few weeks because I’ve been stressed about formatting the poetry book. I finally talked myself into sitting down one afternoon and figuring it out. It took me several hours over three days, but I’m finished!!

I still have a couple of read throughs and formatting checks to do, and I still need to finalize the title page, which I’ll do when I have my cover done, and I also need to finalize the retailer blurb, but everything else is done, decor included. 😀

The problem is that I couldn’t use my formatting software for the print book because I’d end up with weird page numbers and a bunch of other weird things, given how poetry isn’t usually formatted the same way novels are, and I want things to be fancy! The other problem is that I couldn’t figure out, at first, how to use the software for the ebook, again because it’s set up for novels, so there’s a bit of extra formatting involved in getting the alignment of everything right, which I did figure out, but not until after I spent about four hours messing around with no less than five other options that either presented issues I had no control over or options that were honestly just going to be a huge pain.

The print version wasn’t that bad. Yeah, I got frustrated a couple of times, but overall, it just took some time. A lot more time than a novel because there are so many more separate pieces. Part of the frustration is my own damn fault, because I was like, “ooh, how about I have a different font for each section?” NO, KRYSTAL, WHY?! I spent more time trying to make a decision and then changing my mind fifty times than I did applying the styles to the document.

So, I formatted the print version in Word with a poetry template from, because one, I already had it – I picked it up as part of a sale when I got the template for NO REST FOR THE WICKED two years ago – and two, like I said, the software I have (Vellum) isn’t great for poetry. Though it is perfectly fine for a poetry ebook, since things need to be more flowable and less fixed anyway, unless you want to annoy the crap out of anyone reading the book.

So, while it was tedious to adjust all those poems and titles separately, it was also mildly meditative, and hugely satisfying when I was done. And hey, things look really good! ^_^

Yeah, thought I’d share my pain. Lol! But I can get back to my novels now and hopefully do some more reading. This is definitely a lot more time consuming than a novel. Faster to read. Easier to edit. I guess my time has to spiral out of control somewhere.

Sooo, writing update coming next week! I know you’re all excited about what I’m juggling over here. 😀

Writing Anniversaries & Official Blurb Unveiling

July is anniversary month at The Narcissistic Rose Café for two reasons: One: It’s the month designated for celebrating my first completed novel – not because it’s the actual month I finished – I actually have no idea when that was – but I remember working on it the summer of 1996, and I know… Continue Reading