The outing of words into a real book.

photo Gerard

Can one imagine? We all know that much of our world is not really tangible anymore. Even tactility is fast disappearing. It is all  available on the Internet. People can view and feel everything now on a screen. You can chose to adjust the size and distance from the screen to suit your vision. Whole lives are lived in front of a screen. People now ( I have been told) are living entire relationships now within the internet. They never actually meet. It seems that for some that is enough. With fast changing technology, even mutual sex is experienced through the internet with a variety of adjustable vibrating plug-ins and erotic apps. Love is doomed forever to remain elusive but how could Cupid have known its mystery would come to this?

So it is with words. In the past words were either spoken or held on a firm material, often on paper and in books. Remember books? I bought a kindle a few years back and downloaded the entire Tolstoy’s ‘war and peace’ in a split second and it was free. I started to read the story again but gave up after the first hundred pages or so. I haven’t touched the device since. I forgot the password.

Some people are organised with passwords. They keep a little book with their passwords somewhere. They are especially wary of the passwords of their bank-accounts. The password on my kindle is now floating around with so many of my other passwords. I just don’t connect to anything anymore that asks for a forgotten password. It is getting so peaceful.

Lately I am driven to get some of my words on a more tangible material such as a real book. I came across a web-site for self publishing and filled in a form for an estimate of costs. It is of course ever so gratefully acknowledged that so many of you have persisted in reading some of my word order. It is now over eight years since I started writing. I even wrote a book called ‘Frank’s story’ which I sent off to those publishers recommended by Australian Society of Authors. All of whom were supportive but no offer of publication. It is no wonder. It is a very competitive business.

As I said, I am chuffed each time bits of my writing gets read and responded too. It keeps me going and off the streets. I am now contemplating to get a book published that one can actually lift up and feel its weight, turn it around, even fondle it. My daughter and three grandsons will perhaps even carry it around within their lives after I am no longer here. I know they will get our spoons and forks but those will end up most likely donated at Father Riley or the Salvo’s. A future receiver of my spoons is hardly likely to reflect in whose mouths those spoons might have rested or ladled food into.

It just gives me a  glowing feeling that my words might survive in a more substantial form that just swirling around on the Internet. Heaven only knows in whose vibrating App those words of mine could end up in?

In any case, I have asked for a price on just 50 books. I need to re-write and print out the manuscript feverishly. I am so excited about the idea. Any advice will be welcomed. If you know a good editor let me know.

 

My words are eagerly waiting.

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56 Responses to “The outing of words into a real book.”

  1. kaytisweetlandrasmussen83 Says:

    Good for you Gerard—I’m so excited for you. I have considered this also, not knowing if anything would ever come of it. I did publish several years ago, of my art, while I still was a bit more eager. Don’t know if I have the energy now. I will wait and see what you find out with the self-publishing thing. You of course know M-R and Carrie Rubin are published.

    Liked by 2 people

    • gerard oosterman Says:

      Yes Kayti, I had a quote for 100 books already with a full coloured cover. I am besides myself with excitement. Yes, I know that M-R and Carrie Rubin, also Lund and others are published authors. I should be so pleased to join the ranks. Can you imagine?

      Liked by 1 person

  2. Patti Kuche Says:

    So excited for you Gerard and do hope you go ahead with your plans. My local bookstore has a book printing machine http://www.shakeandco.com/shake_trade/images/brochure%2011.19.15.pdf
    how exciting is this? We also have loads of local libraries and I always have a book on the go, never go to bed without one and have never given e-readers a thought. We still get the daily newspaper!

    Liked by 1 person

    • gerard oosterman Says:

      Yes, I looked up the link you gave. Amazing! Have a latte and get your book printed. I saw a video of the procedure in book-printing. They came out like sausages from the machinery and I saw just two men doing it all. (The printing of books I mean). Of course, one can eat the sausages!

      Liked by 1 person

  3. nonsmokingladybug Says:

    Good luck to you and your book.

    Liked by 1 person

  4. Master of Something Yet Says:

    That’s exciting, Gerard! Good for you.🙂 I look forward to hearing how you get on with the whole publishing malarkey.

    Liked by 1 person

  5. auntyuta Says:

    I am eagerly waiting on continued up-dates from you, Gerard.
    I am very interested in finding out how any writing can be made to survive as a book to hand on to future generations.
    I totally understand your dilemma with pass-words.
    Patti Kuche mentions a book printing machine. Now, this may be a good way to do some self publishing! 🙂

    Liked by 1 person

    • gerard oosterman Says:

      Thank you Aunty. For a print of 100 books I have been quoted $15.86 plus GST per book of 200 pages. For another $460.- it can be made available through Amazon.
      I am going to be busy ferreting out all the bits that will fit in a book of 200 pages. It will be a book of my somewhat fictional memoires, if there exists such a thing.

      Liked by 1 person

      • auntyuta Says:

        I am sure, Gerard, each person’s memories are at times a little bit fictional. But I can’t see anything wrong with this. You just write it the way you remember it.

        Like

      • gerard oosterman Says:

        At least I remember still. In another 10 years I might not remember where I put my glasses or what I am doing looking inside the fridge. Oh, hang on. I already don’t remember those things now.

        Like

  6. petspeopleandlife Says:

    Gerard I really hope that you can get that book published. It should be a doozzie. I love how you write and waaay back when, I thought that you might be pressing toward getting you words in a press.

    Liked by 1 person

    • gerard oosterman Says:

      Thank you Ivonne. The big job will be to get a manuscript together. I just printed off some of those bits and pieces and realised they now read from the end towards the beginning. Normally a book starts at the beginning.
      I am being punished now for often reading a book backwards. Helvi has always warned me of my reading habits.
      Anyway, I’ll have to sort it out and start at scratch. (and from the beginning)

      Liked by 2 people

  7. Dorothy brett Says:

    I also hope you can get it together so it can be published, BTW I to often go to the last few pages of a book and read. I wonder if it would be interesting for you to start from the present and go back thru your life to the start.

    Like

    • gerard oosterman Says:

      It all has to make sense, Dorothy. Although even nonsense sells better than most sensible books, especially by self-publishers. However, selling books is getting a bit ahead of the issue.
      I suppose you would buy one and so would uncle Herman, sister Dora, maybe Adrian?

      Like

  8. hilarycustancegreen Says:

    Your grandchildren and great-grandchildren will thank you. I’m a tad worried about who you get to publish it. Please don’t go with any publisher unless you know someone who has used them. Best of luck… but don’t underestimate the computer hours involved in just getting the thing to publication-ready level. Of course, for your international readers, you will need to make it into an eBook, otherwise we can get a copy (except at the most absurd expense, and impossible shenanigans with payment options).

    Liked by 1 person

    • gerard oosterman Says:

      Thank you, Hilary.I have a friend who self published his first book using this publisher. The title of his book is ‘The Justice Machine’

      http://www.fontaine.com.au/

      They were quick with their response and gave me a quote for a hundred books at over $ 17.- per book for about 200 pages and 100 000 words including GST.
      I am grateful for any advise and have no delusions about even selling a handful. ( one reason most publishers won’t easily touch newcomers) I’ll do it for selfish reasons, and for my daughter and our grandchildren. No denying it would feel lovely to actually feel and see a real book published by GO.

      Like

  9. Julia Lund Says:

    What a lovely legacy. My husband has a book that features interviews with his grandparents. One of his great aunts also wrote a short pamphlet about the family. So precious to have those; I wish I had something similar from my predecessors.

    As for self publishing, definitely find a good editor as that means you can be confident that any glitches are ironed out before printing. And when it comes to printing, one optiion to consider is print on demand where a book is only printed when it’s ordered. It can mean far less money up front. Many printing firms do it these days and of course Amazon provide the service through Createspaceand they distribute and ship too. You can buy in their services or do it all yourself. There will be plenty of other independent printers who offer the same option too. There is a lot of information on the internet and plenty of video tutorial support on youtube. If you google something like self publishing/print on demand in Australia, that could start you off.

    I will definitely buy your book when it’s available. You are a true storyteller.

    Liked by 1 person

    • Mary Cathleen Clark Says:

      I know an excellent editor (also an author) who is very affordable. Depending on the length of your book and how detailed an edit you want, editors can run over a thousand dollars or more. David Burton doesn’t charge anywhere near that. He edited my current work in progress and I am so happy with the results. He is also knowledgeable on self-publishing with Amazon’s Createspace and could give you assistance in that area. Here’s a ink to his WordPress site: https://economyedits.wordpress.com/ If you decide to go with Dave, I would tell him upfront what your intended purpose of self-publishing is–re a legacy for your children and grandchildren.

      Liked by 2 people

    • gerard oosterman Says:

      Thank you, Julia.
      I am overwhelmed by your suggestion and shall follow up on all the different options that are now available.
      At the moment I am going through hundreds of my WP piecs and printing out those that might be suitable for a possible book in print for my fictional memoires. Apparently, all this has then to be put together in a PDF format. It would be nice to include some of the photos as well.
      In years to come, future progeny might well reflect on the old codger as being totally off the rails. 😉
      I am thrilled you are already buying my book. What an incentive. I am so happy.

      Liked by 2 people

      • Julia Lund Says:

        The first step is to write and get your manuscript edited. Then comes formatting etc … it’s all so exciting and Cathy’s recommendation will be trustworthy. I’m so looking forward to reading about your progress during 2016. Have a joyful time with those you love this Christmas.

        Liked by 1 person

      • gerard oosterman Says:

        Yes, I know Julia. 2016 is going to be busy but the book will be there, I am sure. We are off to our daughter and her two sons today and we are also going on a short holiday up North that will include our other grandson who we haven’t seen for some time.
        My first job is to collate all the pieces on the one file, a big job. I have contacted Cathy’s friend and am waiting to hear back.
        You too have a lovely Christmas.
        This morning it was 11c outside here in our part of Australia, and in Holland it was 9c. It seems the weather is getting together irrespective of which hemisphere one resides in.

        We have the heaters on!

        Liked by 1 person

      • Julia Lund Says:

        I have no doubt you will rise to the challenge and it will be worth the effort.

        Have a lovely time with your grandchildren and daughter. And you’re right about the weather – it’s been in double figures here it’s mild. We’re preparing for another storm hitting Cumbria …

        Like

      • gerard oosterman Says:

        ‘A storm in Cumbria’ sounds lovely.😉

        Like

  10. Yvonne Says:

    It is so wonderful to hear the excitement you’re feeling Gerard! You’ve got lots of work ahead of you, but what a good thing to leave for your descendants.❤

    Liked by 2 people

  11. snowsomewhere Says:

    Good luck! Go for it

    Like

  12. Forestwoodfolkart Says:

    This is a wonderful project for you to sink your teeth into. I have toyrd with the idea of an art book and a family history type book for some time. So I will watch your progress with interest. One of my blog followers just had her third book on amazon (e book) – it was listed free for a few days to get it up higher on the amazon rankings. I guess so it will be more visible to potential buyers. Will your only be a hard copy, Gerard?

    Like

  13. Forestwoodfolkart Says:

    This is a wonderful project for you to sink your teeth into. I have toyed with the idea of an art book and a family history type book for some time. So I will watch your progress with interest. One of my blog followers just had her third book on amazon (e book) – it was listed free for a few days to get it up higher on the amazon rankings. I guess so it will be more visible to potential buyers. Will your only be a hard copy, Gerard?

    Like

  14. shoreacres Says:

    This is wonderful, Gerard. I’ve been toying with the idea myself for the past year or so, and it all has just seemed entirely beyond me. It’s not the writing that makes me hesitate, as much as the intricacies of the publishing process. I do have a friend who used Amazon’s CreateSpace, and she was very happy with it.

    I’ll be most interested to see how your process develops, and what you think about it all. I’ve tried to get excited about e-publishing too, but I bought myself a Kindle, just to explore that world as a reader, and I was mightily underwhelmed. It’s a fine tool for certain things, but a book is a book is a book.🙂

    Merry Christmas to you and yours — it’s clearly going to be a good New Year.

    Like

  15. gerard oosterman Says:

    Hello shoreacres,
    You have a wonderful blog.

    I also felt daunted by the task at hand but am now prepared to go ahead. ‘Nothing dared nothing gained.’
    I have already got an order in for two books and that is two books more than none!
    I will keep all of you informed about the process and already had a reply from David in the UK about doing the editing.
    Thank you all for your advise and a Merry Christmas.

    Here in Australia and in the Highlands we got the heaters going! It was 11c this morning.

    Like

  16. rodhart (@roderick_hart) Says:

    You’re doing the right thing here. Other people will have said this, but there are two ways to go. 1) Pay for a print run and start selling the books 2) print on demand (POD), where you don’t pay for a print run but can buy a few to sell directly if you want, and others in various countries can order your book online, either as a physical copy or as a file.

    HIlary went down the first route and has interesting things to say about it in her blog, the Green Writing Room. I went down the second, which works for me, but I am absolutely useless at marketing, so it could work better.

    Good luck.

    Like

    • gerard oosterman Says:

      Thank you, Rod.
      It is really great to get advise and help. Helvi understands language and studied both German, Swedish and psychology at a Finnish university. The perfect combination to help me sort out my nouns, verbs and possible breakdowns.
      I would not be good at marketing and have noticed that most people are drawn to Helvi and Milo instead. There is something forbidden about the countenance of a small chin or shifty look that make people engage with Helvi and Milo most times. On top of that bad hearing and a predilection for dread and silk-lined coffin talk doesn’t make for a good sale pitch. I will see.
      I just finished getting 57 pieces in the right order but noticed piece nr 57 at the beginning instead of it having to be at the end.
      There is a lot of work to be done but I love it, and has given me a new lease.

      Like

  17. Intricate Knot Says:

    Go for it, Gerard! You certainly have a book already with all your wonderful blog writings. It might be a bit of work editing it all into a single document, but well worth the effort. All the best to you!

    I’ve done quite a bit of research on self-publishing, although for the time being, I’ve decided against doing it on my own. I really believe the Print on Demand Publishers (POD) are a great option. I’ve heard good things about Lulu https://www.lulu.com/

    I read a brilliant book, “The Indie Author Guide” by April L. Hamilton. She really covers all your options. She also has a website http://indieauthorguide.com/

    Like yourself, electronic publishing doesn’t interest me in the least. I love my laptop, but I have no desire to read book on it or on a Kindle, either.

    Like

    • gerard oosterman Says:

      Thank you I K,
      So much help already. I will investigate all the links so many have given me. Right now, I am putting many of my pieces in some order that makes sense to a reader. I have been put on M/s Offfice Word in which to save and store them. This allows me also to insert some pictures.
      I am going to then have editing done. Bit by bit it will get together. It is something I am excited about but also hope the words will eventually make sense.

      Liked by 1 person

  18. gerard oosterman Says:

    Thank you. What a great start to the year.

    Like

  19. chris hunter Says:

    Sixteen years ago I decided to make my own book – an illustrated poetry book. I made about 20 copies and gave them away, other than a few that I sold, by way of feeling like a real author. It was quite a buzz. Of course the great William Blake made his own books (illustrated) to overcome the reticence of publishers, so anyone with a bit of flair/desire/self belief should give it a go – not necessarily make their own, but self publish.

    Yours is an unusual story Gerard and well worth the telling. Frank’s Story was an inspiration. Gerard’s Story will be likewise. HNY to both you and Helvi.

    Like

    • gerard oosterman Says:

      Thank you Chris. Thank you for the encouragement. I’ll see what happens but am getting excited about the self-publish. Frank’s story might be a book on its own. HNY to you from both of us. Gee, they keep coming at TTalk, don’t they? Trolls, I mean.

      Like

  20. Lilith Says:

    Terrific! I would love to read your book. If it’s anything like your blogs, funny and interesting and historical, it should be good. Good luck.
    I have done a workshop with Joanna Penn, who built her readership immensely and has many books published. She writes a blog, The Creative Penn, how to publish, build readership, using social media etc…She is VERY knowledgeable.
    Carrie Ruben has also just published again “Eating Bull’ , might be worth having a look at her Blog too if you are so inclined.

    Like

  21. chris hunter Says:

    Gerard, I’ve lost the original link. But your question about the book I made? It was 16 years ago. I colour photo copied and b/w copied the wording (on art paper) and had the pages bound together in a cover at Office Works, they had a variety of colours you could choose from. In fact I did it all at Office Works. Probably a tad expensive, however I made about 20 or so copies. It worked, although I might do it differently these days with more publishing options available. Cheers.

    Like

    • gerard oosterman Says:

      Thanks Chris. Yes, the publishing options available now are mind bogling. In New York City there is a cafe where you can get your book printed out while sipping a latte.
      I am at present trying to go through the whole 70,000 words again and hope to ferret out most of the flaws, especially too many hyphen, commas, spelling and syntax mistakes. It will then get edited and formatted. We shall see.
      Cheers.

      Like

      • chris hunter Says:

        Gerard, perhaps I should have mentioned my father’s book. Technically it was like any other hard cover book to look at (no dust cover) but the details behind its genesis is quite interesting.

        In NZ, where my parents lived, there is a publishing service offered to older people who feel they have a tail to tell – a government backed venture.

        A secretary/typist lady would visit the house for half a day on a regular basis and record the info, then return back to her office and type it all up then bring it back for appraisal. And so it went until a 200 odd page book was written. It took about six months.

        The deal being that ‘they’ hold the copyright and give the author so many copies free. No cost to the author at all. Zilch.

        I’m not sure if other countries do this but the program has been up and running in NZ for many years now. No doubt many a tale that would never have been told now has been, it is also considered therapeutic, my father was undergoing chemo at the time and I think this was how the program originally got up and running – via the health department.

        I know he enjoyed the visits, looked forward to them, added extra meaning to his life at a rather difficult time.

        Your column, the outing of words, has drawn many interesting replies, a gem for those with a penchant for becoming an author. (smile)

        Like

  22. gerard oosterman Says:

    I am not aware of Australia having something like that. NZ seems to have forged ahead in more ways than one. I am now getting it all together and have it edited . It will probably go through several editing and formatting procedures.
    I am excited and am prepared to take it to its end. Thank you so much for your information. Is your father’s book mentioned at all or available on-line?

    Like

  23. tedgiffin Says:

    I felt compelled to write anything here. Living life out on a screen, emotions. Yes, there is wonder in being able to read any book, listen to any record via the internet. I live in an apartment, but I can send a wireless signal to my television, and watch a log burn on a fireplace, or see oceans that are blue with the waves crashing, that were probably long ago polluted. Yeah, strangely synthetic experience, something out of a Vonnegut novel, which used to be cradled in my hands at night in bed. I do a lot of music, record it digitally, throw it out on the web. It is not substantial without some sort of hard copy, a compact disc. My drawings are on paper, tangible. I guess the longevity of my Art depends on the quality of the paper. I have rambled on long enough. Keep writing!

    Like

    • gerard oosterman Says:

      Thank you ,Ted. We all just paddle along with oars that we were given. The doing is the thing that gives satisfaction and most times it works. At other times, melancholia takes over and I just let it rest.

      Liked by 1 person

      • tedgiffin Says:

        Melancholia, I have know that well. Artists born under Saturn. I agree that doing is satisfaction, whether anyone sees or hears or reads what I am doing. And for posterity? I hope my family remembers.

        Like

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