Hard to believe, but almost a full month ago I finished writing my book. I naively assumed that the hard part was over. I won’t bore the reader with the gory details of formatting, self publishing, finding error after error after error. Rather, I will share a very sobering experience that happened to moi.
A self publishing company made available to me, at no extra cost, a cover template. I must point out that they did offer, starting at $399.00, a professional cover option. After experimenting for many, many hours, I believed that I had formatted the perfect cover. There was one major flaw: the picture I used was “stolen”, in my outside editor’s words, from facebook. Permission, copywrite infringement, plagiarism were all terms thrown at me. But, really, where would I find such a cool picture as a faceless woman in a black veil, staring at the camera? (Her black fingernails were a bonus; the picture was in black in white with a black background.)
My friend Katey suggested we do something original, and offered her services. Actually, i do believe that i begged her to model for me, but that’s not relevant! After several weeks, the black hat, black dress, and corresponding make up appeared. Using my cell phone camera, several shots of Katey were taken. I had a glorious mis mash of her stored on my computer. Now what?
My dilemma was solved with a car ride. My next statement may be unbelievable to anyone over thirty, but Katey simply had me send her my pics from my cell phone to hers, while she was driving. In less than thirty seconds for each picture, she formatted the photo to a black and white image, complete with “softer” lighting and other finishing techniques. Another minute, and I had all these pictures sent back to me.
Here is my observation: Normally, it would have taken me over a day to do this task. Furthermore, if we were to back track about ten years ago, I would have imagined that this feat would have taken over a week, through some expensive advertising agency. I can not begin to estimate the cost. After all, imaging, formatting, and designing a book cover?
My point is that Katey did this under five minutes. To those who cringe at the mere mention of her driving, there was no real risk involved, in my opinion. Katey drives my car to and from our work; I tend to other things while sitting shotgun. It is a straight, non challenging ten mile highway drive. I am confident in her skills for this.
I did not offer to pay Katey anything for her service; I offered to publish her real name on the inside cover. She declined. I was puzzled and called her out on her lack of publicity motive. She more or less yawned, as this action was no more challenging that brushing her hair or getting dressed: an everyday action. After all, you do not get paid for performing the above listed tasks, do you not?
Somewhere, somehow, I belive Katey is getting screwed over, don’t you think?