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Tuesday, April 12, 2011

Learn From My Fail

I have the rights back to my first four books and novella. Because this publisher had me do a lot of work on hard copy, my electronic files don't match the finished version. I thought about adding in my revisions--I have them in separate files--but there were still changes made at the galley stage and hunting those up would be time consuming and difficult.

On Friday, I priced out scanning the work and balked a little at the cost. I thought about heading to a pirate site and downloading my work from there, and I did search one title, but I literally became physically sick to my stomach just looking at my book being stolen. I knew I couldn't do this just because of the emotional price.

Saturday I came up with a scathingly brilliant idea, though. I have Dragon speech recognition software, and while it's not perfect, it can't be worse than OCR scanning. I'll just read my books aloud and get the final version that way.

At least I was smart enough to start with the novella.

I started out at first correcting Dragon paragraph by paragraph, but that was slow, so I did it every few paragraphs. Still slow. After expanding a few more times, I finally decided to just go through it at the end.

Some issues I expected. Like the hero's name is Nic so I expected to see Nick from Dragon. I wasn't disappointed. What did surprise me was when I said Nic's, I got Knicks. Um, some basketball fan programmed this? I also had Dragon continually putting my sentences in present tense. I would say was and Dragon would type is. I'd say had, Dragon would change it to have. And on and on. Sigh.

Other things were unexpected and I'll be going through the hard copy, book in hand, a few times to find all the errors.

I was still reading aloud on Sunday, late into the afternoon. As I wrapped up the novella, I realized there was no way I was doing this for a full-length book. I bought the scanning package for my four books.

Now, I need to get covers made, write some back cover copy, and when I get my scans back, proofread and format for Kindle, Nook, and other ereaders. Watch this space for release information.