Another reason not to procrastinate

You know what happens once you announce your intentions to get right to work? Something comes out of left field and EATS YOUR TIME AND ENERGY.

Today somebody reviewed Trang on Amazon and mentioned that there were formatting problems. Ugh. Some things I don't get, like why this person wants a table of contents. There's no table of contents in the hard copy, because hello, it's a novel--novels written for adults usually don't have tables of contents. I'm wondering if it's a Kindle thing. If it is, I may have to figure out how to format one, but I hear it's a huge pain in the ass. (ETA: OK, I just talked to a friend of mine who owns a Kindle, and she was as baffled by the request for a table of contents as I was.) (EATA: I talked to a couple of more e-reader owners, and apparently not everyone has the hang of the bookmark feature, and they do find it easier to have a TOC because flipping lots of pages can be a hassle. So I'll look into doing that.)

The person also wanted to be able to download the front jacket. Seriously? Obviously s/he hasn't taken too close a look at it, which is fine by me. Maybe once the cover is fixed I'll figure that one out. (ETA: My friend the Kindle Oracle doesn't get this one, either--still, if there's a way, once I get a decent cover, I'll try to do it.)

But the complaint I was willing and able to fix was the lack of paragraph indents, because (I've heard this elsewhere) double-hard-returns in Word turn into triple- or quadruple-hard-returns on an e-book reader. It became obvious when I tried to fix this that having Amazon convert a Word file into a Kindle file just causes all sorts of weird and VERY unpredictable formatting errors, so what I did was have Amazon convert the file into HTML, download the HTML, edit it in Word (which you can do, apparently--I had no idea), and then upload the edited HTML. That seemed to work OK.

After that I tried loading the same file to Barnes & Noble, only to discover once again that the Nook has its own quirks. I quirkified the HTML file for Nook and uploaded it, but then when I tried to do the same for Smashwords, it turns out that they want a Word file. So I'm hoping the conversion from HTML to Word went smoothly--I especially wanted to update the Smashwords file because I know the version there has some typos.